To most users of a DAM, saving time is the most apparent benefit. You are on deadline. It is an important project and everyone is relying on you. When you started you felt sure there was plenty of time, and you were going to do a great job. Today, not so much.
The first image you needed was the original company headquarters, almost 100 years ago. You were certain Sally had it on her desktop, along with all the historical photos she scanned and sorted thru the years. But when you called her extension this morning you found out she is on vacation for the next 2 weeks, and not checking email. The picture is sitting on a hard drive 6 feet from you, but you do not have her password.
Then there was the shot of the new product you saw on the company website last week. You need a high resolution version, so the copy the website used is of no use to you. It was only photographed 3 weeks ago, but already you have reached out to the 5 most likely people, and you have gotten no answer back.
Finally, there was the promotion video of an NBA star using the product. No one can find it. This morning you had to hire a video production shop to re-shoot it, after begging the athlete’s agent to carve out some time. It will cost the company $21,000. What a waste!
If you had another 2 weeks you could probably find everything, but you don’t. Some things you can recreate (at cost), but not others. The great project is turning into a nightmare.
If only all the digital photos and videos and other objects the company creates or pays for could be in one, searchable system. On this project alone you could have saved days of phone calls and frustration and snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. You could have spent the time doing a terrific, creative layout, the best messaging, you would have had time for focus groups, and revisions to make it even better. Instead you are still searching for the building blocks you need, and time is running out.
Every company, every team, starts out with a manageable collection of digital assets. First, they just fill a folder, then a few folders, then most of a hard drive, and they sprout on multiple hard drives around the company. In general you get to ~10,000 objects and all ad hoc systems fall apart. A DAM, with a database behind it and accessible to everyone (with different access rights and privileges) is what it takes to save you time. And time is the most precious commodity in any organization.