The Basics of DAM for Project Managers

When a project manager needs to deliver a project on time and on budget, project management and productivity tools that include calendar, scheduling and workflow capabilities are a priority. And when it's a creative project, these tools need to connect to a library of all assets, visuals, content and media that are used in the project.

Using a digital asset management system that connects with your workflow and project management tools creates a single source of truth for media that helps streamline team collaboration. This saves valuable time spent searching for assets and, ultimately, gives project managers peace of mind that the team is enabled with the right assets at the right time.

The benefits of a DAM for project managers

A digital asset management system can dramatically improve project workflow and assist with common project challenges. By giving self-serve access to assets with a DAM, anyone on the team will be able to find assets more quickly and efficiently, while moving projects along.

Here are some of the benefits of a DAM for project managers:

Increased efficiency for internal processes

With project managers typically managing multiple client projects at any given time, it’s extremely important to be able to access and find your content quickly. With a DAM, project managers and designers can easily organize and access client content by keywords, colors, categories and more.

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Enhanced team collaboration

As multiple parties are involved in each creative project, effective collaboration is key. With integrations into existing project management systems, users can easily access approved content from the DAM library, as it's directly embedded into the project management platform. This allows users to find and view assets within project management software, maintain version control, distribute proofs, speed up the approval processes and more. With a DAM, content is easily accessible and adaptable, which encourages collaboration across various teams.

Improved time-to-market

With DAM-integrated creative tools, like MediaValet’s CreativeSPACES, you can synchronize work-in-progress assets between your desktop, local servers and cloud library. Assets will be automatically updated and distributed easily to various parties, saving time from searching for the most up-to-date version.

Easily protected and managed creative content

With folder categories, you can ensure all campaigns are organized with custom access, permissions and user rights. This will safeguard marketing materials and protect form improper access, while allowing everything to be kept in a single location using a multiple-library structure.

If your organization is ready to start its DAM journey, the first step is to fully assess your current workflow. This will help determine your core business needs, and which vendors can help you achieve them.

Signs you need a DAM

Between competing priorities and budget, timing is everything. While most organizations plan to migrate to a DAM eventually, here are some sure signs that you need to prioritize a DAM solution:

Your projects involve creative teams

Your projects include collaboration between digital, marketing teams and creative teams at the same time. This could be weekly multi-channel campaigns across different regions, where your digital teams depend on creative production teams to deliver images and media just in time to launch new campaigns across web, email, social and direct mail. A DAM allows everyone to have self-serve access to the assets they need to get the job done.

Your teams are geographically spread

One team is located on the East Coast, while the other is on the West Coast and your photo editing team is in APAC region with 24/7 production timeline. Everyone needs the latest version of the assets to complete their part of the project and provide final approvals and edits. With a DAM, despite distance and time-zones everyone can efficiently collaborate and produce high-quality content.

You work with multiple clients, partners or vendors

You need to share assets, especially large files, with other parties, such as clients, partners and vendors, and need to do so efficiently and quickly. DAM enables your vendors and partners to easily access a single asset, or thousands, allowing work to be completed with less with less back-and-forth, no matter how large the file is.

Factors to consider when determining the right DAM solution

Once you have determined that your workflows would benefit from access to a centralized DAM and a corporate asset library, it’s important to review DAM solutions to determine which will be the best fit. Here are some important factors to consider:

How many users will need access to the DAM?
DAM pricing structures can depend on the number of users or administrator users, that have access to the platform. If you expect the number of DAM users to increase over time, or to expand DAM to other internal teams or external users, that pricing consideration needs to be included into your vendor comparison.

What other platforms does your team use?
dam-2018-wrike-publishDo you currently use project management software like Wrike or Workfront? Are there other platforms that need a centralized DAM library?  If so, it’s important to select a vendor which can integrate with these programs. Ensuring your DAM system works in harmony with your existing tech stack is crucial to a successful implementation.

What other departments or clients could benefit from the DAM?
Will the solution be expanded to other departments or divisions, or will future clients need system access? Choosing a vendor that offers unlimited training and support will be crucial in expanding the use of your DAM system.

What are your organization’s security requirements?
It’s important to determine if a DAM vendor will meet the level of asset security and IT standards for your organization. In particular, companies who need to store assets in specific geographies, should select a vendor that can back-up and replicate copies of data within specific geographic data centers. 

While it seems, there’s a lot to consider during a DAM project, it’s proven that adopting a crawl, walk, run approach can ensure success for your implementation in the short and long term. Check out this blog post for a step-by-step outline and expert advice for your journey.