Digital asset management: The benefits to your organisation

We all create more digital content than ever before. Regardless of industry, it is critical to the way we do business. Organisations aware of this are putting new tools in place to help their teams work better and one of the fastest-growing in popularity is digital asset management.

What is DAM?

Digital asset management (DAM) software allows both internal team members and their external partners to store, organise and share their files in a much more efficient way.

Particularly now, at a time when enterprise teams are working in more dispersed locations than ever before, employees can find shared servers have restricted accessibility and functionality. Solutions like Google Drive and Dropbox may seem like the answer, but these are quickly outgrown. Within weeks thousands of files split between multiple folders can become time-consuming to navigate. Unless your entire team is very well disciplined, people will tend to name files in different formats and save them in unintuitive folder locations. Does that sound familiar?

DAM is different. DAM is purpose-built to provide a user experience that enables simpler file storage, easier searching, more collaboration and faster sharing – internally and with third-parties – all in one simple interface.

Thorsten Rothenpieler, Director of Product Support at Canto

Why now?

DAM has been around for many years, but historically it was an on-premise solution. Implementing DAM in an organisation was a significant investment decision particularly because an IT team would need to install and maintain the software on individual machines. Despite the long-term productivity gains, the up-front time and cost of introducing a system like this proved to be a barrier to many organisations.

Recently the situation has changed. DAM is now available as a cloud-based SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) solution, accessible through a web browser. This means team members – however many and wherever they are located – can benefit from software specifically designed to save them time and effort.

What features benefit the enterprise?

From a product standpoint, DAM is a very exciting tool – its functionality is constantly evolving. SaaS is great for users because when new features are added, they can take advantage of them right away.

From my experience of working with enterprise organisations, these are the top five benefits of a DAM platform that supports you to safely store your digital content in the cloud:

  1. Fast setup – a typical barrier to introducing new software is the internal education process needed to ensure successful adoption. Modern DAM offers an intuitive user interface meaning most can use it right away with little or no training. With easy importing you can easily move content from a shared server into your DAM library in minutes.
  2. Embedded technologies – searching for files and filtering results is revolutionised by using tags, keywords, metadata and custom fields. The ability to search by file size and other factors – for example, by which photographer, designer or document creator – can also speed up searches. Facial recognition technology means you can find every picture featuring a particular individual in an instant, no matter how many different locations they were originally saved in.
  3. Seamless integrations – here DAM excels in terms of productivity. Google Chrome and Microsoft Office plugins let your users search your media library without leaving their browser-based email, document or presentation. Integration with design programmes and other programmes, including Adobe Photoshop and InDesign allows faster editing – file saves are synced with the centralised DAM storage system, so everyone else immediately has access to the latest version.
  4. White labelling – customising the appearance of your DAM platform with your organisation’s own branding is very popular. This means files are housed in what appears to be a natural extension of your internal intranet or external website, rather than looking hosted by a third-party such as Google or Dropbox. With cloud-based DAM systems, admins can provide accessibility to external users, but only to the assets they need.
  5. Scale with ease – DAM software is hosted on the likes of Amazon Web Services. This not only ensures stability and security but means storage capacity can grow with your business requirements. Once a solution like DAM is introduced into a team or department, it’s often popularised wider in the organisation, similar to other productivity-enhancing tools.

Examples in action

DAM is used across all industries. While everyone needs to efficiently manage digital files from documents to presentations to spreadsheets, DAM is particularly favoured by marketing, creative, R&D and sales teams who have an abundance of content. In particular, visual content like photography, graphics and video.

Use cases include:

– Consumer and B2B brands are able to better manage extensive libraries of imagery for current and previous products and collections.
– Those designing new products, and who need a way to carefully organise design iterations across multiple projects, find DAM’s clear version control can streamline processes.
– Organisations regularly providing assets to media or other influencers can link to their DAM portal from their company website and capture details of those wishing to download files.

A major objective of digital transformation initiatives is to increase productivity. The speed with which DAM can be implemented puts it at the forefront of cost-effective technologies organisations both large and small are now considering. When your content is organised, your team is organised.


Thorsten Rothenpieler

Director of Product Support at Canto


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