Laurel A Calsoni

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

What Is Digital Asset Management?

The Alphabet Soup of Digital Content Management
January 20, 2012
-from WAVE Blog,

We recently spoke at the University of Wisconsin-Madison E-Business Consortium.
What a great group of engaged attendees all wrestling with content management issues.

What was really striking about the discussion of content management is how much the acronyms just add to the confusion about choosing some type of software to manage digital content.  Companies all had different acronyms to reference the different repositories they were using to manage their artwork, files, pricing, marketing collateral, etc.

What one company called Content Management, another called Web Asset Management.  No one could agree what constituted an Enterprise system and before the end of the day it sounded like a jumble of letters, none of which helped people understand the functionality they had or needed.

I had great empathy for the customers who are looking for some way to manage, collaborate, edit and distribute their content and are trying to determine what is the best fit for the problem.  We get calls from customers saying, “We need to look at a DAM system.”  Our first follow up is, “Tell us about what you’re trying to accomplish” because sometimes that functionality bleeds over into PIM (Product Information Management – managing product and pricing information) or Web publishing, or includes functionality that some might consider under DAM, or not.

What we recommended is instead of trying to pick the alphabet solution that describes the need, that companies would be better off trying to identify the pain points they are trying to address as well as thinking through the entire work flow.

  • What are you trying to manage and why?
  • What are you using it for?
  • Who else needs to have that information and how do you want to get it to them?
  • Who decides what the FINAL source is and how is that controlled?

Instead of starting with a search for a product, it’s time to take a step back.  Putting a software solution on top of an inefficient workflow just makes that inefficiency faster.  Software alone won’t solve the issue without understanding how it fits in the larger needs of the users and the company.  Start with evaluating the work processes, from start to finish.  Step outside of the “we’ve just always done it that way.”  Ask why?  Is there a better way to do it?  Are there steps that are redundant? Step outside the legacy systems that may already be in place.  If those were not there, how would you do it? Once you can identify the work that needs to get done, and the resources you will need to do it, then you can look at solutions to help that process along.  Then you can focus on the solutions, regardless of the acronym du jour for those products.


posted by Laurel Calsoni at 6:13 pm  

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