Our theme at Henry Stewart New York last month was “A New Twist on DAM” featuring the twist ice cream cone… what does ice cream have to do with software, you ask? As a pure play Software as a Service (SaaS) provider of digital asset management, Widen has blended hosted and installed solutions by putting hardware/software on the client site – the Widen Appliance. How is that different than installed software? Widen manages the installation, replication, monitoring, maintenance and upgrades in tandem with the Widen Collective hosted platform … staying true to the model of providing software as a service.
I presented our concept of “DAM as SaaS 2.0” – managed services on the client site – in one of the technology tracks and featured case studies from Sub-Zero/Wolf and The Sports Licensed Division of the Adidas Group. At the beginning of the presentation, I polled the audience to get an idea of what roles of people I was actually talking to – creative, marketing, or I.T. – because the meat of my presentation talked about how each of those roles benefit from the Widen Appliance.
- High-speed workflow
- No application switching
- Eliminate redundant work
- Eliminate distribution of outdated materials
- Feeds the global demand
- Consistent use of materials
- Self-service access for sales channels
- Immediate use / no training necessary
- Disaster recovery policies
- Share data with other applications
- Higher security standards
- Widen handles the customer support
- External access uses Widen security and bandwidth
In the case of Sub-Zero/Wolf, their master assets reside in Widen’s data center to feed the external demand from their distributors and dealers, while replicated assets are available on the Appliance for local search and consumption by Sub-Zero corporate marketing teams.
In the case of the Adidas Sports Licensed Division, they have six different locations of fully replicated data at each site. Their creative groups work with files at LAN speeds and have employee mobility to access the same data from site-to-site.
One of the questions/concerns at the end of the presentation asked about the speed of the replication between appliance sites and Widen’s master data center (a.k.a. “the mothership”). Widen Director of R&D, Ed Chwae, was available to answer and there were multiple responses… Speed of the replication is dependent on the bandwidth available at the client site. We can use private networks or public networks, VPN tunnel over public networks (dependent on bandwidth) determined by amount of files to be replicated daily. We can throttle the bandwidth… post-pone it for after-hours activity – all of which is dependent on user needs.
Basically, the ability to the give our clients exactly what they need is simple because we are the experts - we develop the software, manage the hardware and have the service and support teams to make it happen…