Every company that deals with digital asset management (DAM) systems appreciates their advantages, but certainly also knows the challenges in planning and implementation. In this three part series our partner comspace explains the three biggest obstacles of an efficient use of DAM and shows suitable solutions.
Obstacle #1: A DAM as an isolated solution? The value of integration
The rapid digitalization in recent years and the flood of new digital systems on the market have led to a veritable proliferation of IT systems in companies. Old systems continue to run and new ones are introduced often without a consistent communication between them.
However, the basic prerequisite for the digitalization of business processes is a powerful and, above all, integrated IT landscape in which data can be centrally combined and communication along the customer journey is possible from a single source.
It will cost a lot of time and nerves, if the DAM only exists as an isolated solution among other systems, causing breaks in the workflow of users. Assets would have to be painstakingly collected at many different locations and still might need to be edited and converted into the appropriate format. In addition, no one in the company would have a complete overview of which assets are actually available, what the latest file version is, and if the license for the image is still valid.
The DAM as a Single Point of Truth
Media such as images, videos, certifications and documents are delivered by different producers inside and outside the company and are needed in many other places to enrich content.
For an online editor it is an invaluable advantage to be able to access all available media files from within the CMS, find the right image in seconds and use it on the website.
Storage and management of assets in one central location, to which all departments have access, helps to avoid frictional losses and saves a lot of time. Resources are freed up, which users can invest in other, more important tasks.
A common data basis, which represents the “only truth” and is valid and binding for all departments, provides a relief in content chaos. As a central content platform for all media files in the company, a digital asset management system is ideally suited to form the center of the IT ecosystem and to communicate directly with all content-producing systems.
The DAM should therefore have a well-designed API that enables connections to third-party systems such as CMS, ERP, PIM, E-Shop and CRM.
Simple system integration with connectors
CELUM ContentHub offers various APIs by default. Users can choose from a selection of connectors and extensions built by CELUM itself or by partner agencies, offering fast and efficient integration.
For the major enterprise content management systems like Sitecore, FirstSpirit and CoreMedia, we have developed connectors that create a seamless connection between the CMS and the DAM. This allows for a more efficient website maintenance. Connectors are also available for less powerful CMS solutions such as Typo3 and WordPress.
What they all have in common is that editors can access all assets stored in the ContentHub directly from the CMS user interface via an integrated dialog and make use of all metadata, versions and permissions already set up. The assets are marked in the DAM and every DAM user can see immediately which asset is used where. This prevents active files from being accidentally deleted or appearing twice in the same application.
In addition, there are many other integration solutions and extensions that enable seamless communication between the systems. These include connectors for PIM applications like Akeneo, e-commerce software like SAP Commerce and marketing applications like Hootsuite, the video platform Movingimage and Microsoft SharePoint.
Whichever application is involved, each system’s integration into the DAM makes the entire content structure in the company more professional, enables faster and more efficient processes, and makes the user experience more consistent – leading to increased productivity and return on investment of the DAM.
- save a lot of time when using assets in different systems by minimizing the effort necessary for coordination. The days are gone when a file had to be downloaded from one system and uploaded into another one.
- minimize mistakes: A DAM ensures that always the latest version of a file and only files with valid licenses are used.
- create a seamless user experience: Managing all content in one place – from creation to publication – is a guarantee for having always the newest and aligned content used throughout your customer journey.
DAM as a secure filing system
With all the advantages of an integrated IT landscape, one thing should not be overlooked: In some cases, a DAM can make sense even without using integrations. This is the case when it comes to using the DAM system as a secure storage system for sensitive – e.g. person-related – data.
Whether contracts, personnel files or customer data – in a GDPR-compliant DAM system such files are stored more securely than on file servers, local hard drives or in Google Drive. Of course, this is the case, provided that the DAM system is operated in-house or by a selected host provider who works according to data protection guidelines. No matter who invests into a DAM out of this reason should still think about how to make use of the benefits of other systems or ultimately opt for an integration into their system landscape.
Anyone who has thought through how the DAM system can be embedded in the existing IT system landscape, has already overcome the first major obstacle in implementing a DAM project, but there are still other classic hurdles.
Read in our next part, how you can overcome the lack of internal acceptance for the DAM project.
comspace develops and integrates complex web solutions for content management in medium-sized and large companies. As a digital agency with a tech focus, comspace focuses on the highest quality in code and project management. Consulting, development, services: more than 100 colleagues cover the entire spectrum – always with an eye on tech, feasibility and transparency. As a trusted CELUM partner, comspace supports companies in implementing and customizing the CELUM DAM. With its connectors and extensions, the agency ensures optimal integration into existing CMS environments and creates an outstanding experience for CELUM users.