If your DAM is indeed open for business, are you sure it is being utilized? Whose responsibility is it to ensure it is being used? While trying to answer these philosophical questions, an organization could be losing time and money. One of the secrets to ensuring that your DAM is a success is to be sure it is being utilized by end-users who do not view their DAM as a “technology root canal” but rather as an effective and efficient tool for everyday work in managing media.
While trying to unlock this secret, think of what the end-user wants in a tool. Most likely, their needs and desires are very simple. They need to share files anywhere – and to manage their files with the utmost user-friendliness. These factors will ensure that your DAM is not only open for business, but also that business is thriving.
If you are going down the path of implementing a DAM, it is critical to have user input during the selection process and the interface. All too often, the technology comes before the end-user. As with technology tools in our everyday life, if we don’t get it right the first time, it will be neglected or not be used. We just don’t have time to deal with yet another system that takes more effort to learn how to use than it would be to go back to reliable older methods.
Getting an enterprise DAM system up and running can be a slow and cumbersome process. It can take more than 18 months to implement. In large organizations, it can even take longer. You have heard of this all before – getting executive buy-in, budgeting and ROI, reviewing workflow processes, testing, training end-users and then planning for the big launch. These are smart methodologies and the IT department might love this solution, especially knowing that it will work with the technology that they have in place. Again, what is often overlooked is the critical fact that the creatives and marketing folks need to embrace this new system quickly and easily or the business of your DAM will fail.
Nelson Vigneault of CleanPix shares some of his thoughts on this. “Although many large organizations use enterprise solutions, certain kinds of assets like videos or marketing material need a more closely tailored system. This is where the Workgroup DAM solutions really shine. They address specific needs and methods tailored to the culture and professional setting of a group and may provide needed specialized tools to meets the tasks.
For example, with the CleanPix Brand Asset Management Service, designed for PR and Marketing professionals, there is an online portal system called WebLinks that allows users to create rights-managed image or asset libraries at will. In addition, there is a tool to create e-news campaigns based on the same libraries to publish to specific intended audiences such as partners, sale distributors or journalists, while tracking the results. The best part is that this can all be done with virtually zero internal IT support.
These Workgroup solutions can work as stand alone or in tandem with more elaborate systems.”
Most end-users recognize the problems they have in their everyday workflow. In fact, they’re looking for a solution. They really do want to work smarter. They want to cut media production costs and save days of wasted effort trying to locate files, but they are asking for a searching tool that allows them to find the exact files they’re looking for – and fast.
They want to reduce costs and enhance productivity by cutting out numerous manual production tasks like transferring files or converting formats. They want to protect their brand, but they need to know the latest and greatest licensing, usage guidelines, copyright or other conditions of use are available to reduce the risk of costly copyright blunders or the embarrassing misuse of brand.
They will help ensure your DAM is being used, but they must be top of the list of considerations when implementing a system, and their needs are relatively simple. Most important is a user-friendly tool with which they can move their video, images, documents, et al in order to share their media. They need to be assured they have the latest and greatest branded material. They need to find their stuff quickly and deliver it anywhere even quicker. They may even need to use this tool to communicate to their external users.
Make more of your media, from managing brands to distributing marketing collateral or other media assets by making sure your users are using the right tools. A DAM system should be designed to encourage businesses and individuals to share media (and knowledge). In return, they will become actively involved in ensuring your DAM solution is open for business.