No team is perfect in their efforts to manage digital assets, especially those that maintain massive databases of files that seem to endlessly expand. Digital marketers, content marketers, designers, event managers and many other busy teams tap into the power of digital asset management to keep everything under control, but even impressive platforms and their smart (but human) users need a little spring cleaning sometimes.
If you’re ready to check in with the status of your digital asset management solution, here are some tips on where to begin and how to get the most out of your spring cleaning.
Review Your Digital Asset Management System
There are many moving parts in a modern DAM solution, from hundreds of custom collections to long videos and extracted text. It makes sense that once in a while, you will have to pause your everyday work to ensure things are still organized and functioning the way you need them to. This may require a little tidying, consulting with other users at your organization, and checking in with your DAM provider if you have questions on what to tweak.
A good starting point is taking stock of your admin needs and basic asset storage by performing a quick review to see where gaps lie, if any. You can always pop in a few times per year to perform a quick review. But spring cleaning is your chance to dive deeper with a more detailed look at how your DAM is functioning, and serving your business. Below are some of the things you can work on in your cleaning efforts.
- Take a look at user access to ensure the right people have access to the things they need
- Check on the security status of your DAM to verify assets and users are properly protected
- Perform a brief asset overview and note any gaps that exist in metadata, tagging, grouping, etc.
- Organize asset categories and groups
- Evaluate naming conventions and taxonomy
- Complete or update asset metadata
- Update DAM users, roles and rights
- Review your team’s use of special and everyday features
- Explore other teams’ DAM use
- Assess asset intentions and use statuses
- Review rights obtained on photos in the DAM, and take note of expired rights
- Remove or replace assets (old branding, outdated, redundant, archivable, etc.)
- Ensure security is well-maintained
Chat with Your Team
Whatever your intentions are with digital asset management software spring cleaning, if you’re on a team or have colleagues from other teams who access the system regularly, you’ll want to get their input on how things should be set up to make their jobs easier. If you don’t already follow some critical digital asset management best practices in terms of organization—and sometimes even if you do—you can run into some messy territory with asset storage techniques that can really slow down the way your team members find, access and save files.
If you haven’t yet, take some time to survey everyone who has a user account or works with the software to hear how they feel about its current condition, what they would change and what methods they have for using and updating DAM content. (They may even have some bad habits when it comes to uploading, downloading and saving files that you can address!)
And if this internal surveying reveals that some team members are struggling with the DAM system, it may be time to host an internal training session, or switch to a new platform that better meets their needs. If you have a system that’s working well for you but it needs a little boost, you can always speak to your digital asset management solution provider to add on more handy features, such as accelerated intelligence (AI) tools for easy photo identification and searching.
Set Some Parameters
If you really intend to tackle your DAM system cleanup goals, you need to factor the right amount of time into your work schedule to accomplish them, whether that means tidying up during your workday or after the clock strikes five. Determine how you want to approach the cleanup, when you’ll settle down to do the work, who you want to involve, and any other conditions you may need to consider to get the job done.
- How: Diving right in, cleaning by group or category, or cleaning by section (metadata, approval workflows, etc.)
- When: Cleaning all in one day, divvying up the work to team members, or making progress over a week or two
- Who: One person will manage cleanup, one person will oversee team members completing sections, or one person will handle and gather team input before cleaning
Start the DAM Cleaning
Once you figure out a DAM maintenance schedule that works for your users, you’re ready to start the DAM cleaning with your objectives in mind. Spring cleaning and regular reviews of your DAM software, plus internal training sessions as needed will help you and your team work smoothly and efficiently, helping to avoid any headaches when navigating the system and finding assets you need ASAP. If you need a little more support on what to tidy up in your system or what best practices to follow when working in your digital asset management tools, get in touch with your system provider for additional resources.