Workflow Software for DAM - How it Works and Why You Need It
In this Article
Naturally, Digital Asset Management systems are purposely built to centrally store and retrieve digital assets in an organized manner whenever needed by various users. Hence, workflow software for DAM ensures efficient use and protection of the assets.
There are so many tasks and processes that happen in a typical Digital Asset Management system. Examples include asset ingestion, organization, optimization, retrieval, distribution, version control, archiving, preservation, etc. Each of such tasks has some order of doing it that starts somewhere and ends somewhere: start to finish. Such a sequence is known as a workflow. Since the workflows can be so many and diverse, we need to have a tool within DAM that is purely dedicated to streamlining these workflows. This is what digital asset management companies, such as Catsy, mean by workflow software.
Read on to learn more about workflow software for DAM, how it works, and why your business needs it.
|In this article you'll learn:|
Why every Digital Asset Management needs a built-in workflow tool
A built-in workflow tool in DAM is software that makes it easy to manage and control the processes related to Digital Asset management workflow. It provides a structured capabilities and automated approach for managing the lifecycle of digital assets, from the time they are uploaded into the Digital Asset Management system to the time they are retired or archived.
A built-in workflow tool can do things such as define conditions that ought to be met for an asset to progress to the next step in the workflow process. It can also provide users with different views of the same asset, based on permission levels and pre-defined workflow steps.
In this section, we’ll delve into the importance of a built-in workflow tool in DAM, and how it can positively impact your asset management processes.
Improve the security of assets
Digital Asset Management companies developed a built-in workflow tool because they know that it can play a crucial role in improving the security of digital assets by providing a controlled and monitored environment for access and usage.
This can be achieved in various ways, including:
- Role-based access control: The functionalities can restrict access to assets based on the user’s role and permissions, allowing only authorized users to view, edit, or download assets.
- Approval processes: You can use the workflow tool to enforce approval processes, where changes to assets or distribution of assets are only allowed after approval from a designated reviewer or manager.
- Audit trails: The workflow tool can keep a record of all actions performed on assets, including who made the changes, when the transformations were made, and what the tweaks were. This provides a complete audit trail for security and compliance purposes.
Let’s use the example of an eCommerce company that sells custom-made furniture. The quality and accuracy of assets such as images and videos are critical to their online sales. The company has several departments, including product photography, product management, creative teams, and marketing, all of which need access to digital assets. However, they are concerned about the security and brand consistency of the assets, as well as ensuring that only approved content is being used.
By implementing a digital asset management (DAM) system with a built-in workflow tool, the eCommerce company can automate the process for managing access and usage of their digital assets. The product photography team can upload high-quality images of the furniture products into the DAM system, and the workflow tool will automatically trigger a review and approval process as defined by the product management team. Once the images are approved, the workflow tool will automatically make them available for use by the marketing team for creating advertisements and promotions.
The user-friendly tool will also enforce conditions for access and collaboration, such as requiring approval from the product management team before an image, descriptions, or any asset can be published. This ensures that only accurate and approved assets are being used, conveniently reducing the risk of errors or misrepresentations that could harm the company’s reputation and sales.
Additionally, like artificial intelligence and machine learning, the digital asset management tool provides a detailed audit trail that is automatically recorded and can be used to monitor compliance with company policies, identify potential security breaches, and respond quickly to incidents.
Seamlessly manage constant content requests
Content applications can get overwhelming if not well managed. Your team of professionals can easily struggle with inefficient request approvals, inconsistent brand messaging, poor productivity, and poor customer experience. But with built-in workflow software for DAM, it’s easy to streamline the requests, allowing teams to respond quickly to market changes and customer demands with high-quality and up-to-date assets.
Here is how such a process would typically work for, say, a moderately big eCommerce company that sells mobile phone accessories:
- Incoming requests: The marketing team sends 50 image requests for phone cases and 25 video requests for screen protectors per hour. The procurement team sends 20 image requests for new products such as earbuds. All these requests would be discoverable because they are captured, and logged into the system with relevant details such as the product name, request type (image/video), and the deadline.
- Task assignment: The system would then assign these requests to the relevant departments or individuals. For instance, the image requests from the marketing team would be assigned to the graphic design team, and the video requests would be assigned to the video production team. The image requests from the procurement team would be assigned to the product photography team.
- Workflow management: The workflow software for a digital asset management would then manage the tasks assigned to different teams. For example, the graphic design team would receive notifications of the image requests they need to fulfill, along with the necessary product information and deadlines. The team would then work on creating high-quality images for each product, such as clear and appealing images of the Apple iPhone case or the Samsung Galaxy screen protector, and upload them to the system.
- Approval and feedback: Once the tasks are completed, they would be sent for approval to the relevant parties, such as the marketing team or procurement team. The approval process would be streamlined and efficient, allowing for quick feedback and necessary revisions.
- Asset management: The system would then manage the final approved assets in a centralized repository. The assets would be easily searchable, organized, and accessible to relevant teams, ensuring consistent brand messaging and reducing the time needed to find the right content, such as the latest images of the wireless earbuds.
Speed up approvals
A built-in workflow tool of a digital asset management system will reduce the time it takes to get new assets live or delivered to where they’re needed. It enables administrators to set up a defined sequence of approvals, assign tasks to specific individuals or teams, and track the progress of each asset through the approval process through collaboration. This eliminates the need for manual email chains and status updates, saving time and improving the accuracy of the approved brand assets.
Imagine an eCommerce company that sells various home décor items, including rugs, curtains, and wall art. With a constantly updating product line such as price and product information changes, image tweaks and background removal, it’s important for the company to keep its sales outlets up to date with accurate and high-quality images.
With traditional tools, updating is always a slow and manual process that involves multiple departments and stakeholders. The marketing team will initiate a request for new product images or videos, and the graphic design team will create the content. However, getting final approval from the product manager, the creative director, and other stakeholders is a time-consuming and manual process that often involves multiple rounds of revisions and delays.
With the implementation of a built-in workflow tool in its DAM system, the approval process automatically becomes much more efficient. The marketing team can initiate a request for new product images or videos, and the workflow tool automatically assigns the task to the graphic design team. The graphic design team creates high-quality images or videos of the products and uploads them to the system, where they are automatically sent for review by the relevant stakeholders. The stakeholders can use the workflow software for DAM to accelerate the review process and provide feedback including revisions if necessary. The graphic design team can quickly address any issues. Once the final content has been approved, the tool updates the status of the request to “approved” and archives the final assets in the centralized repository.
The approval process is now super streamlined, allowing the eCommerce company to keep its channels up to date with accurate and high-quality assets. This way, they can respond quickly to market changes and customer demands.
Ensure asset optimization doesn’t fall through the cracks
In the context of eCommerce, asset optimization refers to the process of improving the performance and efficiency of digital assets, such as images and videos.
For example, image optimization involves actions such as resizing, compression, alt text, and file naming. Resizing refers to the process of changing the dimensions (width and height) of an image or graphic. Compression is the process of reducing the size of a file with the goal of making files smaller and more efficient for storage, transfer, and processing.
There are two main types of compression: lossless and lossy. Lossless compression maintains the original quality of the file but may not achieve as significant a reduction in file size. Lossy compression reduces the file size more dramatically but sacrifices some quality in the process. In the context of eCommerce, compressing product images can help improve loading times and provide a better user experience for customers, which can increase the chances of a customer making a purchase.
Alt text is the written copy that normally appears when an image fails to load. It also proves useful for users who are visually impaired or for search engines. It is important for accessibility, as users with screen readers or other assistive technologies can understand what the image is showing even if they cannot see it.
File naming refers to the process of naming image files in a descriptive manner, such as “red-t-shirt.jpeg”. This can help improve search engine optimization by making it easier for search engines to understand what the image is showing and to display it in search results.
So, how can a built-in workflow tool in Digital Asset Management ensure asset optimization such as resizing, compression, alt text, and file naming don’t fall through the cracks? It makes it easy to define and automate logical steps for these extremely important processes, ensuring that they are always affected meticulously. It will also automatically check that these steps have been completed before the asset is approved for use. For example, the tool can enforce guidelines for alt text and file naming, such as requiring descriptive alt text for all images and using specific naming conventions for image files.
Improve team-wide transparency over assets
This refers to the ability of all members of a team to have access to and visibility into digital assets. A built-in workflow tool essentially provides a simple sequence for managing, tracking, and approving the use of digital assets. It allows multiple team members to access, review, and comment on assets, with a clear record of who made changes and when. Some tools include automated notifications to keep everyone in the loop. Everyone with an account can get automated messages, and they’re also displayed in the notification center. The entire audit trail of each step in any workflow is available in the history, and everyone with permission can view it.
This level of transparency reduces the risk of misunderstandings and errors, duplication of effort, and missed deadlines. This leads to a more effective and efficient eCommerce operation, focusing on improving the overall quality and consistency of the customer experience.
How workflow software and digital asset management work
In a typical workflow software for DAM, a series of steps are defined for each task. The workflow software then allows teams to track the progress of each asset through each step and provides visibility into who is responsible for each task.
A DAM system, on the other hand, serves as a central repository for storing, organizing, and managing digital assets. It provides a secure and organized way to store and access the assets, and allows teams to search, preview, and retrieve the assets as needed.
Now, when workflow software and digital asset management are integrated, teams can streamline the management and distribution of digital assets. The workflow software can access the assets stored in the DAM and automate the workflows, allowing teams to move efficiently from the creation of an asset to its final distribution.
The end result is that teams can quickly introduce new assets, update assets with templates, and perform accurate quality checks.
Example: Imagine an eCommerce company that sells custom-printed t-shirts. The company creates various designs for its t-shirts and needs to review and approve each design before it is added to its online store.
To manage this process, the company uses workflow software such as Catsy DAM Workflow is built into Catsy DAM. The company defines a series of steps in the workflow software for the approval of each design, including tasks such as reviewing the design, getting approval from the creative team, and final approval from the senior marketing manager.
The designs are stored in Catsy DAM, where the team can preview, search, and download the designs as needed. The workflow software integrates with Catsy DAM and accesses the designs stored there, allowing team members to review and provide feedback on each design.
Once all approvals are received, the workflow software automatically moves the design to the final step and marks it as approved. The approved designs are then uploaded to the eCommerce platform and made available for purchase.
Revenue is a product of processes. The more swift your processes are, the more revenue you can drive. Every efficient workflow contributes to increased revenue in different ways. For digital assets, it’s about the effectiveness of those little processes that gradually combine to influence revenue. How fast do you get the assets live, how is the quality, and how fast can you make updates when needed? All these affect the overall experience your customers will get on the other end.
So when you use a tool like a workflow software for DAM, you’re in a better place to enhance those activities that smoothen the asset management part. With this, the tool contributes greatly to driving revenue. There are two key ways that the revenue-driving benefits are realized.
Speed products to market
A well-designed workflow software streamlines accessing and distributing digital assets, allowing eCommerce businesses to bring products to market faster. This can lead to increased sales and deliver a competitive advantage that wins customer loyalty.
Simple things like ensuring that images, for example, are properly and speedily optimized and ready to be used in marketing materials, such as website banners and social media posts can make a huge difference. This saves time by reducing the need for manual optimization, allowing the business to focus on bringing new products to market more quickly.
Reduce the cost of lost assets
Digital Asset Management companies developed a workflow tool that automates and standardizes the steps involved in processes such as optimizing, reviewing, and updating digital assets. This reduces the likelihood of human error and ensures consistent management practices. There is an ever-present, automatically generated an auditable trail of all the transformation to assets plus the current status of each asset.
You can define criteria such as mandatory checkboxes as part of the tracking setup. With such capabilities, it’s very easy to see where each asset is and assign accountability should an asset get lost or corrupted in the hands of any user. Additionally, workflow software allows users to create specific rules and parameters for tracking assets, such as mandatory checkboxes or other criteria. As a result, users can easily identify who is responsible for any asset loss or corruption and also have a much better understanding of the asset’s current state.
Utilizing workflow software for DAM is a great way to reduce the cost of lost assets and ensure that all assets are well-managed and accounted for. The resultant visibility eliminates duplicate efforts and reduces the risk of outdated or inconsistent assets being used, thereby reducing the likelihood of losing or misusing assets.
Billionaire Jeff Bezoz once said “If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell six friends. If you make customers unhappy on the Internet, they can each tell 6,000 friends.” This coming from such an iconic authority in eCommerce indeed highlights the exponential impact that negative customer experiences can have in the digital world. Digital assets in particular play an integral role in shaping these experiences, as they act as the bridge between the real product and the customer.
If your assets are handled without some serious order, it will eventually reflect on the final experience that the customer gets. It could be an outdated image here and there, a muffled video, or an unused quality image – these seemingly innocuous things can make or break the experience of users. Even employees can get frustrated dealing with such challenges.
The right workflow software for DAM will help you get rid of such tiny mistakes that can cost the business when it matters most. So make sure you get it right from the start by investing in a digital asset management system with built-in workflow functionality. With the right tools in hand, you can easily manage the entire lifecycle of your digital assets from one single platform. This will save you time and money, while ensuring that your digital assets are being used in the most efficient and effective manner.
Workflow software for DAM is a tool that integrates with a digital asset management system to automate and streamline asset management processes. It makes it easy to define and automate steps for each task.
You need workflow software to improve efficiency, reduce time-to-market, increase productivity, and ensure the proper management and distribution of valuable digital assets. By doing so, you’ll ultimately save a lot of time, reduce losses related to digital assets, and increase revenue.
The software integrates with a company’s existing digital asset management system, allowing users to automate routine tasks, such as file uploads, optimization, and approvals, and also manage the flow of information and assets between teams.
The revenue-driving benefits of workflow software for DAM include streamlining processes, reducing time-to-market, increasing productivity, and improving the management and distribution of valuable digital assets. Workflow software for DAM provides an automated way to track and manage the entire digital asset lifecycle, from acquisition to storage, organization, and distribution. This allows organizations to save time and resources by automating repetitive tasks, reducing manual data entry, and reducing the need for manual approval processes.
The improved organization and speed of delivery also helps to boost customer satisfaction and loyalty, and by reducing the amount of time and resources required to manage digital assets, organizations can focus more on creating and delivering valuable content. In addition, workflow software for DAM can help to improve collaboration between teams and departments, allowing them to work more efficiently and effectively. All of these benefits can lead to increased revenues and lower operational costs.
Yes, many Workflow Software for DAM solutions offers customization options to meet the unique needs of a business, such as customizing the approval processes and adding custom fields for specific asset types. This allows companies to tailor the software to their specific workflow requirements and improve their overall digital asset management processes.