Most companies have come to realize they need a better way to manage their rich media assets. As the corporate image library steadily grows beyond just images, issues related to storage arise and are followed by complications associated with the retrieval of assets and their general management. Companies require digital asset management software programs for these and other reasons.
There are dozens of DAM products available, but how can a company be sure that any particular DAM software will provide solutions to their growing digital media needs? Even if a company already has some form of DAM in place, it might be dated and irrelevant.
The following are a few of the considerations that should be taken into account when assessing the relevance of a DAM system:
Content creation: This refers to support for the capture, production and manipulation of digital assets. Many DAM systems allow users to do some cropping, resizing, and other basic transformations. However, companies that do a great deal of storyboarding, print layouts, and high end production of assets will require DAM systems with more creative tools to work with.
Content management: Most DAM systems have some basic way to search a digital asset library and allow administrators to assign metadata that aids in searches. Other basic aspects to expect from the content management capability of a DAM system are workflows, versioning, and various permissions functions. In addition to aiding with the management of assets, they can also provide centralized control over assets. This centralized control is imperative for companies with representatives who work in different geographical areas. While basic DAM systems may function for companies only concerned with being able to quickly find assets, higher-end DAM solutions are necessary for companies that require more advanced library capabilities such as support for long-form HD videos, presentation slides, and searches for rich media.
Content distribution: Companies should assess the extent to which they need to transform the formats of assets, rendition management, localization of digital assets, and digital rights management. High-end and marketing-focused DAM software is more likely to offer solutions along these lines. Other types of DAM tend to have fewer of these capabilities because of their focus on internal content management.
The varying needs of companies requiring DAM and the wide variety of DAM solutions emphasizes why any organization should assess the relevance of digital asset management tools before buying any DAM product. Be sure to check out DigitalAssetManagement.com or the Widen Resource Center for more assistance.