In today’s turbulent times, it is often not easy to work efficiently and maintain productivity at home. For me personally, there are three obstacles to overcome:
First, the rest of the family, including two delightful but attention-seeking children, is also at home.
Second, the transition to remote work is a challenge even for a modern and digital company like CELUM. Communication, goals, agreements and tasks must be redefined and renegotiated.
Third, we definitely are all going through a period that will end up in the history books. The pandemic threw us all out of balance and is, depending on your personal circumstances, more or less stressful.
This makes it all the more important to make your professional life as efficient as possible. If you have to work with outdated and inefficient technologies, it will be even more difficult.
8 good reasons for Digital Asset Management
Remote work has been growing in popularity with organisations for years, and today, in the face of change, it is a critical factor. We at CELUM have always given employees the opportunity to work from home and experienced first-hand that decentralised teams need a whole range of tools to work effectively.
Fortunately, there are already cloud-based SaaS platforms and other tools to improve productivity and efficiency: for communication, there is software such as Slack, Zoom, GoToMeeting, MS Teams and Google Hangouts. When it comes to collaboration, Google Docs and Sheets, Microsoft Sharepoint, Dropbox and many more help. Studies have shown that a functioning infrastructure is one of the greatest success criteria for effective remote working. So what can companies do to streamline their workflows in today’s digital world?
In this article I want to explain in more detail why digital asset management systems are particularly inspiring for marketing and creative teams when they work from home – and provide 8 very good reasons for this.
Access all files from everywhere
Because most DAMs are in the cloud and host all the marketing content such as photos, videos, documents and everything else an organisation needs, employees can access the files they need from anywhere. It sounds trivial, but in our experience, this is the biggest problem for companies around the world.
Hiten Shah, founder of well-known marketing tools like KISSmetrics and many others, recently commented on this:
Online collaboration tools are seeing a huge uptick in adoption right now.
Video, audio and written communication such as documents and messaging are all the keys to remote work.
The one thing to focus on is collaboration.
How you and your team collaborate to get things done. https://t.co/vMwyQA19MG
— Hiten Shah (@hnshah) April 14, 2020
Of course it is true that many companies have processes in place to remotely share files over a VPN. However, these processes often restrict users, as they are assumed to have a solid understanding of the organisational structure of the file system. Speed and accessibility are the big advantages of a Digital Asset Management (DAM) system and most folder systems simply can’t keep up. With a carefully maintained DAM system users can easily find the files they need by using powerful search functions, even if they have never accessed the system before and do not understand how it is organised.
Central source of truth
Digital asset management platforms act as a central source of truth for all brand and marketing assets. They enable all parties involved to organise files in a meaningful and efficient way, regardless of whether they are staff or external parties such as agencies, designers, freelancers, etc. Just think back to the many hours you spent searching for the right files, the right logo, the one photo, name of which you forgot. With the right DAM system, you don’t have to remember naming conventions or wait for the one colleague to save the important presentation on his computer or if the asset you’ve just spent minutes looking for is the right version.
If all these problems sound familiar to you, it’s time for a better solution.
A secure and cloud-based platform
Many of today’s digital asset management platforms are secure and cloud-based. Some offer on-premise or hybrid solutions, but when it comes to working from home or connecting global teams, a cloud-based solution is a must because:
- you don’t have to worry about slow (VPN) networks,
- a cloud-based DAM is easy, intuitive and fast to use for every user,
- professional digital asset management platforms offer multiple layers of security to protect and secure your assets,
- the CELUM ContentHub, for example, is also fully GDPR compliant,
- and backups of the files are not a problem anymore as they are stored on redundant servers.
Unify your brand image
If your company employs external staff, you have probably noticed that it is difficult to maintain consistent branding. However, even for internal colleagues, it’s not always easy to remember all the latest images and versions of the brand communication guidelines and the more brands your company has, the more confusing it becomes. This can very easily lead to the wrong file being released for publication, especially if you create a lot of content.
With a properly managed DAM system, however, this is never a problem. As soon as a logo or image is updated, it can be added to the DAM library and shared with your team. The next time your team logs in to download an asset, the updated file is already waiting for the user.
Invite all your guests and partners
When your external partners work with your digital resources, it’s critical to provide access to the right users at the right time. Most digital asset management platforms offer some form of tiered permission structure with owners, administrators, employees and guest users. Ideally, the system will also use Single Sign On (SSO) to ensure that your users are who they say they are. There are many different solutions out there, with Google and Microsoft currently the most popular.
With tiered access rights, administrators of the Digital Asset Management platform can keep permissions high by granting access levels for your entire DAM ecosystem or you can fine-tune permission levels by creating a subset of assets for specific users.
Collaboration and version control
Regardless of whether you work in the office or virtually from home: collaboration and communication are the key to the success of projects and campaigns.
We are convinced that your creative team should also have access to your DAM system: not only for the above mentioned source of truth, but to track the entire lifecycle of marketing content. With the right DAM you can do this and not just store files passively. From content creation to editing to publishing – the possibility to work collaboratively on assets is a key factor in determining the quality of a DAM.
If you have other tools in use together, such as Wrike or Asana, the problem is often thatt files in the tools are used like email attachments, these files can neither be edited nor commented on. So you end up sending back and forth various files via email and lose track of which version is the right one.
Secure sharing is caring
Internal employees, sales teams, executives, online retailers, distributors, media and creative agencies, publishers – they all need access to your content. And when these parties are spread across many countries and time zones, content distribution must be efficient and fast to make reliable marketing possible.
To share files with as many people as possible, there are a number of measures that a DAM system should fulfill:
1. quick sharing via link or email – this should be a solution that is way safer than most free sharing tools you can find online
2. content portals: The possibility to publish independent galleries, which make all files and assets available for download as a media library
3. access to the DAM: as explained above, a DAM can be a great self-service storage for many users without the need for an employee from your company.
Of course, faster distribution of content to all partners also means better merchandising, faster time to market, easier go-live of marketing campaigns and higher ROI on your e-commerce sales.
No more bottlenecks
We have briefly mentioned it above, but we will elaborate on the idea here. DAM systems reduce bottlenecks because employees with access to the system no longer have to ask other team members for files and wait for them to be sent. They simply log in, download what they need, and then get on with their work.
Bottlenecks can also occur when files need to be sent to stakeholders outside an organization. For example, if a media representative contacts your company and requests images for a press article, distributing images and information should not be an obstacle to good reporting.
As always, you can also send the data by email or WeTransfer, but the greatest possible control of all data is achieved with digital asset management.
Summary: One DAM to rule them all
The bottom line for us is that the factors that make DAM useful for remote workers can make it easier for everyone else. Having everything centralized, easily accessible at any time of the day, and easy to search through is an advantage for anyone who regularly deals with digital files.
Now is a good time to make your infrastructure fit for the coming growth efforts and CELUM would like to accompany you on this journey. We have made our Digital Asset Management solution as accessible and flexible as possible. With this flexibility, the new ContentHub is ready to serve customers of all sizes: From individual teams to SMEs and large companies.
In addition, we are now offering a free 30-day trial version so that interested parties can see for themselves the core functions and advantages of a DAM system.