In my last blog, I took a look at Digital Asset Management (DAM) and how manufacturers can use this technology to take full advantage of the rich media being created within the supply chain. In this blog, I’m going to suggest 4 key capabilities that you should look for when selecting an enterprise-wide DAM platform.
Many manufacturers overlook the value of the digital assets that are being created in their organization. While marketing knows all about content, images, logos, and rich media – such as video – but production facilities are less well understood and managed. Yet, digital assets are growing exponentially with the new generation of smart factories. Ask yourself this question: Do I know or can I easily find out what digital assets exist within my organization, where they’re stored, what’s the correct version to use, who has access to the different assets and can you use assets created in one part of the business to add value to the activities of others? Ok, it’s a long question but I’m pretty confident that the answer is ‘no’.
4 key capabilities your enterprise DAM platform needs
To answer the question positively, you need to implement a DAM solution that can span the organization. Key features that manufacturers should look for in an enterprise-wide DAM platform include:
1. Asset and content management
An enterprise DAM platform must provide a complete view of all the digital assets within an organization. It must deliver robust content and meta-tagging capabilities that can handle all types of content and media. It is essential that the DAM can group assets together in collections to meet the needs of individual customers, dealers or distributors – but that all these assets only have a single instance to allow for quick updating and amendment. The DAM platform needs to have the capability to automatically transform assets to support the widest range of channels and devices. Finally, an enterprise DAM needs to be able to manage content and metadata that exists outside its own repository, elsewhere in the organization, or in the systems of partners or agencies.
2. Accessibility and collaboration
As business becomes more global and the pressure to create more and more digital assets continues to grow – especially the video from drones and wearables – there is an increasing need to share and collaborate on digital assets with many different people – in different languages – where the content and information is available when required. Your digital assets must be, at once, accessible and secure. An enterprise DAM platform allows you to control the lifecycle of all assets while setting the policies and procedures surrounding how an asset is created, amended and approved. Not only does this increase the productivity of your staff, partners and agencies, it reduces the risk of using the wrong assets or the wrong version.
3. Effective workflow management at scale
Your enterprise DAM platform should enable the creation of automated workflows to make business processes manageable and efficient. It provides users with the content and assets they need – when they need them – and facilitates ease of search, retrieval, amendment and approval. This workflow management has to be rapidly scalable to meet the needs of many business areas from new product launches in sales and marketing to asset optimization in operations. Managing content and assets then becomes about quality and speed rather than identification and version control.
4. Effective customer profiling
Building upon the ability to create individual collections of digital assets, the enterprise DAM should be able to relate specific collections to specific customers. In manufacturing, an organization has a unique digital relationship with each customer. The DAM platform must be able to accommodate this by managing: digital assets and variants on the products the customer sells; the specific digital assets that the customer needs to sell, and; the digital asset data that a customer requires. With many manufacturing sectors, there are industry standards for data that should accompany a digital asset and the DAM must be able to make sure your remain compliant. Finally, the DAM platform must be able to automate the format, frequency and method of distribution required for each unique customer profile.
For larger companies or companies that trade globally, Cloud-based DAM platforms – such as OpenText Media Management – are becoming increasingly popular. Not only do they remove cost and complexity of managing a DAM platform internally, they deliver the security and scalability that companies need for effective worldwide operations. In addition, open Cloud-based systems facilitate external collaboration with retailers, distributors and other partners to accelerate productivity and time to market.
As manufacturers become more and more customer-centric, they need to implement solutions that ensure they are providing information in the right format at the right time to meet requirements across the product lifecycle. With so many digital assets to manage, an ad hoc or distributed approach is no longer viable. Manufacturers need an enterprise DAM platform that puts them in control of the entire content creation and distribution process while optimizing value of the digital assets they create.
From February 2018, OpenText will be holding our Innovation iTours conference in many worldwide location where you’ll be able to learn more from other industry sectors about how they are already benefiting from their DAM investments. We’ll be continuing the conversation – with some of the world’s leading manufacturing companies – at OpenText Enterprise World in July. It would be great if you could join us there.