Deciding on a digital asset administration (DAM) vendor and an implementation companion places in place the inspiration you’ll use to develop your DAM. You need that basis to be as robust and as sturdy as doable.
However what do you base your selections on? How will you be assured you’re making the precise choices for your corporation? There are a number of key components to bear in mind as you navigate the choice course of. Within the first article of this two-part sequence, we’ll concentrate on choosing your DAM vendor.
Present me the cash
Whereas all of us want it wasn’t, finances would be the high consideration in selecting which DAM vendor you’ll transfer ahead with. Don’t get discouraged in case your most popular vendor is outdoors your finances and there’s not sufficient wiggle room to barter decrease charges. There’s a wealth of DAM distributors available on the market at this time for each finances. You most likely know the large gamers — Adobe, OpenText, Censhare, and so on. — however they’re not the one selections. A well known title and excessive price ticket don’t essentially translate to the next high quality product.
A lot of the success of your DAM would be the results of the way you arrange your taxonomy, metadata and workflows. The DAM system itself is barely the framework for these key parts. And the seller you begin with doesn’t should be the seller you stick with endlessly. It’s possible you’ll select a extra primary starter DAM to get the venture off the bottom and use it because the baseline for demonstrating the worth a DAM brings to your group.
If and while you outgrow your starter DAM and are out there to improve, you’ll have metrics and completely satisfied finish customers to help you in negotiating the next finances. You’ll even have invaluable perception into your group’s must-haves and nice-to-haves as you add to your established basis.
Narrowing down the choices
Selecting a vendor with expertise working with corporations much like yours could also be helpful, particularly throughout the necessities gathering part. In preliminary conversations with potential distributors, ask about their current shoppers. Are they akin to your corporation by way of dimension, construction and business?
Should you learn my earlier article and adopted my recommendation to gather and analyze your content material previous to beginning your vendor search, you’re ready to ask a possible vendor if their current shoppers have an analogous mixture of content material by way of file sorts and sizes. Do in addition they have related regulatory and/or authorized necessities round some or all of their content material?
Be sure you ask for references in the beginning of the method so you might have ample time to arrange discussions with them. If a vendor can’t or received’t present any references, that’s a particular purple flag.
In conversations with the supplied references remember to ask about each positives and negatives. How particularly did the seller deal with the negatives? Not all the things goes to go completely easily with any vendor, however how the problems are dealt with and what help is supplied makes a big distinction all through the DAM constructing course of.
Don’t simply communicate to the references supplied by the seller. Lean in your community to acquire a number of references of your individual. Make the most of your LinkedIn contacts, attain out to colleagues you’ve met at conferences, or communicate to former co-workers who’ve moved on to new corporations and new DAMs. The seller will give you references that they’re assured will communicate extremely of them, however you need the nice, dangerous and the ugly.
When you have both current or future programs in your roadmap that may combine with the DAM, reminiscent of web sites, product data administration (PIM) or workflow administration instruments, ask the seller about how simply their DAM integrates with these particular or related programs. It’s additionally useful to ask any references you seek the advice of about their experiences organising and sustaining integrations with the DAM.
Meet and greet
When you’ve obtained your quick checklist of potential distributors, it’s time to schedule demos. That is the place the enjoyable begins and also you get to see some DAMs in motion. Earlier than you carry a vendor on-site, you’ll must put collectively a listing of use circumstances you need them to cowl of their demo.
When gathering your use circumstances, embrace your entire stakeholders and ensure you’re getting the angle of all classes of finish customers, from uploaders to downloaders and everybody in between. And don’t neglect about your IT and Authorized division representatives. They’ll have particular necessities and considerations outdoors of these of the standard day-to-day finish customers.
This isn’t the time to carry again and thoroughly curate your want checklist. You actually need to see all that the DAM can do. Within the curiosity of time although, separate your use circumstances into the must-haves and nice-to-haves to ensure you get by way of all of the must-haves. What are the deal breakers by way of necessities your DAM should meet?
Ensure that your use circumstances cowl your entire asset workflow from add to obtain, together with metadata, approvals, versioning, looking out and archiving.
- What sort of asset safety and permissioning do you want?
- Are you curious about AI capabilities or different automation?
- Does your DAM must accommodate information and metadata in a number of languages and help customers who communicate languages apart from English?
- How about your integration wants?
When you’re placing collectively use circumstances, collect a set of your organization’s belongings and request that the seller use these for his or her demo. Be sure to have quite a lot of file sorts and sizes. Not solely do you need to ensure that their DAM accommodates your entire required file sorts and sizes, but it surely offers you a greater concept of the ultimate product to see your individual belongings flowing by way of the DAM.
Consider it in the identical means as shopping for a home and picturing your belongings within the area throughout the exhibiting. You additionally need to see how the seller handles belongings which are new to the system and never a part of their commonplace polished and rehearsed demo. If an error happens throughout the demo with one in all your information, how do they deal with it?
Dig deeper: The case for digital asset administration
Too good to be true or the proper match?
Watch out for too many yeses as you ask questions throughout the demo. Ensure that the seller is evident about which options and features are out of the field and that are customized. The seller could also be telling you time and again that they will customise the system to present you something you need, however that’s not essentially a great factor. Not solely can that rapidly drive up prices and delay your venture timeline, however over-customization can result in efficiency and stability points. In some circumstances, it may possibly additionally prohibit future enhancements and upgrades.
Should you’re informed that particular options you’re requesting aren’t obtainable now however are on the roadmap for a future launch, get a way of the timeline. If there’s no particular launch date or a minimum of a projected time vary, be cautious. You would be ready years in case you see the brand new options in any respect with out having to go the customized route.
Able to construct
Take your time and be assured in your vendor choice. Don’t rush by way of the method and don’t be afraid to maintain asking questions if one thing isn’t clear or appears too good to be true. The sturdier the inspiration, the stronger and extra profitable your DAM will finally be.
Opinions expressed on this article are these of the visitor writer and never essentially MarTech. Workers authors are listed right here.