Listen to Alex Hauschild talk about Digital Asset Management
Henrik: This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Alex Hauschild. Alex, how are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
Alex: I started out at UCSB Davidson Library working for Salvador Güereña. And he brought me on to do brochures and graphic arts and stuff for him and we hit it off up pretty good and during that time found out that a lot of my imaging experience from previous was what’s going to help him develop what was called a digital library at the time. And we did a couple of pilot projects and went from there and he encouraged me to get the… he tricked me into getting a library and information sciences degree and went from there. I ended up with the UCSB Art Museum doing architecture and design collections.
Worked with California digital library, developing some of their policy and content governance for the California Digital Library and Califas, which is basically a large multicultural archive online. And went from there. Around 2008, ended up going to…moved to Los Angeles, did a little trying to start my own publishing business for a while. They ended up with Motor Trend hot rod trying to save their archive and that was an amazing experience. And from there, just kept going through the entertainment industry, went to Dreamworks and from there Google.
Henrik: Alex, how does a multinational technology company use Digital Asset Management?
Alex: Well, that’s a crazy question. Basically, they use it in multiple different facets. There’s production pipelines. Might have heard the term creative value chains or creative value pipelines and these are basically the production from concept to final assets. And final assets actually can mean several different things. So they’re using Digital Asset Management all the way along the way and sometimes multiple case in multiple ways. They use it in project management and then they use it for distribution. I mean, the short answer is distribution in all cases. That’s what Digital Asset Management is all about. But depending on your user base, it depends on what that distribution is.
Henrik: Alex, What are the biggest challenges and successes you’ve seen with Digital Asset Management?
Alex: That is a question that has two different parts. What are the challenges and successes for me and what are the challenges and successes in the field. For the field, I think what we’re seeing is more of a transition or more of a user-friendly attitude towards content management basically blends brand awareness and brand control with Digital Asset Management. We kind of transitioned into that from content management systems and just being…. seeing the potential for being able to distribute out to multiple users and multiple ways. Especially with… for the web or specifically for the web. For myself, it’s been a long road, so I’ve gone from creating digital library… Digital Asset Management systems before we had a term for them. I used to think of them as digital libraries and then kind of evolving with the industry as it transitioned into, I think basically going into distribution and then getting mixed with legal and I think maybe the challenges and obstacles we faced are now that we’re able to provide organized sets of assets on a massive scale, how can we protect the legal at that point and what kind of interaction with legal and licensing do we want to take? Or we the gatekeepers, are we the organizers? That’s really the fundamentals of the industry right now I think is can we transition as librarians, gatekeepers into a communicative role where we basically are helping users determine whether or not just where something is, but whether or not they can use it, so user control is a big deal now.
Henrik: Alex, what advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Alex: I mean, depending on which aspect of the industry they want to go in, there’s a big difference between academic and tech…technology fields where I’m at. I would get to know the marketing production, the process of it from content creation, which is at the producer level, at the project manager level and get to know how that works and how those assets are transferred from concept to creatives to postproduction. There’s so many tie-ins from asset producers who are creating images and handing them off multiple ways. Those handoffs become the critical mass for any assets, like who’s getting it, when they’re getting it and those are the timelines that you were working with. I think that those are really the things I would pay attention to if I was starting out. Now it’s can I get more involved in marketing and can I understand the marketing world because they’re the ones really creating these asset banks, really just get to know marketing agencies and how agencies work. It really becomes more of a people process when you understand why and when things are being made.
Listen to Brad Boim discuss Digital Asset Management
Henrik: This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Brad Boim. Brad, how are you?
Brad: I’m doing well, Henrik. How are you?
Henrik: Good. Brad, how are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
Brad: Well, the NFL cable network launched back in 2003 with a 24/7 linear channel and at that time, we were pretty much like a startup operation, so Digital Asset Management was not really much of a part of the conversation at that point. And I was originally hired as an Avid editor and it was a pretty small operation. We had three Avids and we were working in a pretty scaled down operation from where we are today. So early on, the amount of media files that we were accessing, storing and creating was pretty minimal. And so there really wasn’t a lot of thoughts or concerns about asset management or organization at that point. And our storage was localized to individual Avids and we were running standalone islands at that point and you know, cycling… old school cycling of videotapes between local Avid Systems. So you know, sort of did that for a few years. A couple of years into the network, we scaled out from there. So we deployed a Unity system which was a 13 terabytes Unity. So finally at that point, we had some shared storage and some workspaces across our edits systems and you know 13 terabytes probably at the time seemed like a ton of storage working at DV25. But that quickly was apparent that that was not the case. We were filling the storage up in and we realized we had to kind of address it on some level, but I don’t think that we really placed a high priority on asset management at that point.
Brad: It was really a few years later when we switched our platform and storage to a SAN environment and we flipped over to Final Cut Pro and at that point, we deployed a MAM [Media Asset Management]. So that’s where we had some tools available to us to control ingesting of game content and various shows through the MAM. And that kind of led us to a place where maybe we needed to start focusing on asset management at that point. So fast forward 15 years from day one and our post operation and asset management needs have grown exponentially. So I had shifted my role from being sort of a hybrid editor and asset manager to really moving completely into the content management side of things here. And so since that point, you know years ago, I been managing all the post-production and asset management workflows here at the NFL media group in LA.
Henrik: How does the professional American football league use Digital Asset Management?
Brad: We’re a linear cable channel and we also have multiple digital platforms that we’re supporting. So our website, nfl.com and VOD channel and mobile apps and even delivery to our league sort of controlled social media sites. So you’ve got a lot of different production groups within our facility that are looking to get access to the same media assets and do it quickly. That stuff turned around as quick as possible. So it’s pretty central for us to have the ability to index and organize all these thousands of media assets within our MAM. So we put a lot of effort sort of on the front end to get as much metadata entered into the MAM on the individual assets as possible so that people can get quick access to the content. So adding a lot of metadata tags based on our internal taxonomy system, gives producers the ability to do really quicker searches in the MAM for any specific file or play or content from a specific game or an event that they’re looking to get access to. With NFL content, you can kind of categorize it into pretty distinctive categories. So it can be game footage and all the ways of describing game footage, whether it’s season or week or play description.
Brad: You have lots of things like press conferences and studio-based content for a lot of our shows that are produced out of our facility here and plenty of other categories that people typically are looking for. So within the MAM, our media asset management system. So we’re running an asset management layer across the facility. So that is indexing the thousands and thousands of media assets. So it’s essentially a search engine for curation of all the media content. You can categorize media assets and a number of ways by team or by media type, whether it’s video content, audio or still images and there are plenty of ways of sort of providing multiple metadata tags on content so that people can really find it. So in most cases, we’re tagging the same piece of media in multiple ways. So one person might do a search based on the team that are associating the search with and then another person might do a search based on a player’s name or on a season and they’re going to get to the same media assets from either of those searches.
Brad: So the system pretty flexible and intuitive for people to find things once that metadata gets added to the content. So I think our asset management system is the centralized access point for some other metadata that we’re also trying to get in that are pretty crucial to things we do on a day-to-day. So things like, and these are things that we are really sort of developing right now, but the ability to utilize cloud-based services to do things like speech-to-text on sound press conference interviews is becoming a real-valued asset for us. And once the transcripts are received back from the cloud, we’re transferring that metadata back directly into the asset management system where it becomes time aligned with the asset so people can search off of it. So for example, if you had a Bill Belichick press conference and he spoke for 15 minutes and the producer is only interested in the time that he spoke about a certain player’s injury, instead of having to listen to the entire thing, you can search off of that keyword of injury and you would be able to narrow down the specific places where that was referenced in his press conference.
Brad: And you know, in a kind of a similar way of harvesting metadata. We’re also bringing in the play by play information for every NFL game and importing that data right into the MAM [Media Asset Management] as well. So for a typical game you’ve got every single play has a play description, that information gets time aligned onto the media asset within the MAM as a marker and then all those plays with those detailed descriptions of the play becomes searchable both in the MAM, but then when the clip gets brought into the NLE [Non-Linear Editing system], the markers come with the media assets so whether you’re a logging or editing, you can search and find pretty much any play from any game. And then a few other things that we’re using tools within our MAM that become pretty useful within the building is the ability to log in, watch proxies of clips within the MAM so that PAs or producers can spend some time prepping and adding their own user-based markers onto media and adding notes into the MAM. And then that information assists the editors because all that information transfers over to the NLE when the clip is moved from the MAM into the NLE and the NLE would be our [Non-Linear] Editing platform.
Henrik: Brad, what are the biggest challenges and successes with Digital Asset Management?
Brad: I think that the volume of media that we generate within our facility on a daily basis has really increased significantly over the past few years. So it’s exceeded the support personnel capabilities that we have in our building, which are doing a lot of manual metadata tagging within the asset management system. So this kind of wave of content makes it a little bit difficult to keep up with the pace and get all that metadata applied to the assets so that everything becomes searchable within the building. So some of the things that we have been challenged with and really would like to get to is the ability to bring a real-time stats feed of the play by play from each individual football game to get that data dumped into the MAM in real time and have it time aligned with the game footage itself. And currently, we’re doing it after the fact.
Brad: So we will get that data and we’ll import it and marry it in the asset management system to the asset after the game is over. But the real value for us would be to have that data streaming in and going associating with the media clip in realtime and that’s something that we’re looking to actively solve right now. And then I think with a lot of the machine learning and AI technology that we’ve been looking at, you know, to try to automate some of the processes that we are currently doing manually. It can be a huge help. But I think some of the tools it’s been a bit slow to try to deploy some of these things. And there’s still a little bit of a level of human interaction to be able to parse through all of this machine learning metadata that you’re generating and determine how accurate it is and what data is really going to be beneficial. And what maybe is extraneous data that you want to toss out. And I think certainly as image and facial recognition technology and the speech to text and these other machine learning tools become more accessible and integrated into our asset management system we’ll be able to figure this out a little bit better and learn how to utilize. And potentially monetize it better. There’s also always been a kind of a challenge in quantifying the benefits of, you know, spending additional time and resources into metadata curation and certainly the added expense and effort of integrating machine learning data from, from end users perspectives. I think the resources are essential for them to do their day to day jobs, you know, they all want more ways to get access to content quicker and more information for them is gonna be beneficial. But translating those benefits and the expenditures on paper to reflect those immediate cost savings benefits can be kind of complicated to push that up the chain. But I think overall, we’ve leveraged our asset management tools here much more over the past few years. We’re starting to see a lot more engagement in adding these resources from our production groups here and they are the ultimate consumers of the tools that we’re providing so it’s gratifying to see them utilize these workflows that we’re building and see that we’re creating more efficiencies for them in their day to day workflows.
Henrik: Brad, what advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Brad: Well, I think you should always be thinking that there’s a better way to do things than maybe what you’re currently doing. Our workflows and approach to organizing content in our asset management system. It is constantly is evolving and sometimes you might come up with an idea to harvest metadata, provide it to your production teams and it just kind of falls flat or they can’t utilize it effectively and from my experience, it really helps to engage with the end users of the workflows that you’re trying to develop and listen to what they’re really trying to accomplish and sometimes a great idea…it might not fit into the aspects of live TV production and the immediacy of what they’re trying to do, but it could be a more beneficial tool for your archival workflows as opposed to the quick turnaround live approach, which doesn’t always work well when you’re trying to add extra layers for them.
Brad: So in most cases, we’re trying to develop solutions for both sides of that. You know, it really does come down to how you can directly impact the efficiencies or the people that are using the system. Like I was saying before, the emerging tools like AI and machine learning, they can potentially make our lives much better by providing richer set of data that we can all utilize, but it does create a whole new set of challenges and filtering through this mountain of data and making sure you’re using it in a way where it’s being a benefit to everybody in your buildings. So those are some of the real challenges right now. The technology that has been evolving is really keeping us fluid with some of the decisions that we’re making. I think you need to maintain a lot of flexibility with your infrastructure so that you can adapt when new technologies come into play.
Henrik de Gyor: This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Natalie Daller.
Natalie, how are you?
Natalie Daller: I’m great. How are you?
Henrik de Gyor: Great. Natalie, how are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
Natalie Daller: I thought I’d start with a little bit of background information on myself. I have a photographic background. I started off in analog darkrooms with projectors and mixing chemistry, and from there I transitioned into a digital retouching role, working a lot for many, many years in Photoshop. From there, I moved into an asset management and permissions role at a museum, and today I work as the global administrator of my company’s DAM system.
In my current role, I’ve worked for my employer in some kind of digital assessment management role for a little over six years now. I started off as an image coordinator and recently was promoted to Digital Asset Specialist. The impetus for the new role has a lot to do with the elevated importance of Digital Asset Management within my company’s Martec landscape. While Digital Asset Management started off as an internal process for improved efficiency, it’s evolved into a method for broader brand control and asset delivery to our external partners, which include a body of approximately 40,000 potential end-users.
Henrik de Gyor: Natalie, how does a multinational, multilevel marketing company use Digital Asset Management?
Natalie Daller: Well, as you mentioned, we’re multinational. I’m based in Chicago where headquarters is located, but we also have international offices in Canada and Germany. As an internal tool, our DAM system provides easy access to our final brand-approved assets to all of our coworkers, no matter where in the world they’re located. As a direct sales company, our sales force is comprised of, as I mentioned, about 40,000 consultants and our consultants need on-brand assets at their disposal to use to market their businesses, and beginning in 2015, we were able to leverage our DAM to provide curated collections of beautifully photographed and designed marketing assets, aligned to our brand.
Doing this is mutually beneficial. We’re able to have more control over our brand, but we’re also freeing up time for our consultants so that they can focus their energy on activities that are most important to their success. Digital Asset Management enables us to provide and continually improve upon this service by looking at the analytics that we find within the DAM system, measuring the success of our campaigns, and then, in turn, tailoring our strategies and content based on the asset performance.
Henrik de Gyor: Natalie, what are the biggest challenges and successes you’ve seen with Digital Asset Management?
Natalie Daller: There’s a lot of challenges, I’d say. Keeping up with the volume of assets is definitely a big one. We’re able to produce a lot, but then ensuring that everything’s making it into the DAM system and that we’re also seeing on top of archiving. That’s a big problem, the challenge I would say, so that you’re certain everything that’s available, that’s accessible, is still relevant, and then, of course, being diligent and adding useful metadata, you can upload and upload and upload, but if you don’t take the time to actually add meaningful keywords and your users can’t find the assets, then you’re wasting a lot of time.
I would say also, and this is probably most important, is empathizing with your users and looking for ways to continually make improvements so that you’re ensuring your users are finding what they need with very minimal effort. So it’s important to listen to your users. We like to conduct user testing, stay open-minded, and understand that what worked a few years ago may no longer work today, and needs to be updated.
Lastly, and this is something that I’ve really been focused on last year and again going into 2018, is ROI and demonstrating the value of a Digital Asset Management system, so we came up with a formal KPI, a key performance indicator, in 2017 to evaluate our DAM and ensure that it’s best in class and that we were doing everything needed in order to make it useful to our users, and that KPI that we were measuring was what we called our unaided asset request. That means that our goal is to have 82% of our users find assets without the assistance of myself or my counterpart. And what that meant is that 82% each month of all assets downloaded came from requests made through the DAM system.
We did really, really well. Really, really well. But then we still heard lots of complaints, so though while our users were able to find their assets, it was taking them a very long time to find them, so we were changing our KPI for 2018 and we’re looking to measure the ROI using a search to download conversion ratio. So we’ll look at the number of searches our users’ input before they, in turn, download something. Hopefully, we’ll be able to make improvements with our Digital Asset Management system that will decrease the amount of time that our users need or takes them in order to find what they’re looking for.
Henrik de Gyor: That’s great. And so the idea is to be more self-service, as far as search is concerned. Searching and finding what they need.
Natalie Daller: Yeah. We’re not bottlenecks, because obviously if all the requests are coming into us, we can’t immediately turn them around, so we don’t want to be bottlenecks, but then we want people to be able to have a very good user experience whenever they’re looking for their assets.
Henrik de Gyor: And having them actually find their own assets versus you finding them for them.
Natalie Daller: Yes.
Henrik de Gyor: Got it. Yeah, yeah. That should be the goal for most DAM systems, in my opinion.
Natalie Daller: Yeah. There’s really no point if it’s just a huge cloud storage system for the two asset coordinators to go and pull down assets for everyone.
Henrik de Gyor: Completely agreed. Yep. And, Natalie, what advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Natalie Daller: The first thing that popped into my head when I thought of this question is Digital Asset Management is far more exciting than it sounds on the surface. I know when I first took a job in Digital Asset Management, I don’t think that I was that enthusiastic about the prospects. It just seemed like a natural next step from imagery touching. And that’s what, I think, it was supposed to be was like a middle step before I bounced onto something else. But I’ve completely fallen in love with it and it’s a lot more exciting than it sounds on the surface.
There’s a lot of opportunities to impact user experiences and to think creatively to solve problems, and then it’s important, like I mentioned earlier, to keep an open mind and demonstrate empathy, and to remember that there’s no one size fits all solution.
Henrik de Gyor: This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today, I’m speaking with Dan Rosenberg.
Dan, how are you?
Dan Rosenberg: I’m doing well, Henrik. How are you today?
Henrik de Gyor: Dan, how are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
Dan Rosenberg: Well, my first job out of college was I started actually in the tape library at WWE in Stamford, Connecticut. Through some twists and turns, I took on some side projects and ended up digitizing edited shows from tape, wrapping them with metadata, and sending them out to cable and satellite companies for WWE 24/7, which, at the time, was one of the most expensive video on demand [VOD] services. Through the success of that platform, this encouraged WWE to embark on a massive digitization project and make its entire 100,000-hour tape library accessible to hundreds of producers and editors all on a searchable database.
I eventually got to take on the number-two position in WWE’s new Digital Asset Management Department and eventually head my own team, which was in charge of archives and restore operations, digital delivery, disaster recovery, storage management. We eventually ended up supporting and building out a system. We educated the users, we trained them, and this eventually made it possible for WWE to launch its own OTT network, which combined a 24-hour live stream with an incredibly rich on-demand anthology which was accessible through almost any device. The other major win that we got out of that was that every ingested video asset would get a low-res proxy, which could be viewed and edited by the low-res … excuse me, by the live show production teams prior to retrieval. This ability to have full resolution assets restored very quickly from the LTO library and dynamically relinked to sequences was a major leap forward for WWE and the quick-turn demands during the weekly live shows where historical events are constantly referenced and storyline changes occur at the drop of a hat.
A lot of these offerings and workflows are much more commonplace today, but WWE always seemed to be ahead of the curve when it comes to video. I was very fortunate to be there for nine years actually, starting in 2005, working with some of the best mentors and teammates imaginable. We grew the department from two of us to start to nearly 30 by the time I left. This was just an exceptional learning experience which allowed me to be prepared when the opportunity arose to start a team here at Time Inc., where I’ve been since 2014.
Henrik de Gyor: Dan, how does one of the largest media publishers use Digital Asset Management?
Dan Rosenberg: Well, people all over the world are familiar with the Time Inc. titles, or brands as we call them, like Time and People, Sports Illustrated, Fortune, Essence, to name a few. Time Inc. has really spent the last several years redefining its image and the space it occupies in the mediascape. While we still maintain the outstanding print journalism and photography, which has been the hallmark of the company for nearly a century, we’re seeing the most explosive growth in the video realm. When I was hired three years ago, the brand teams were already turning out content at a breakneck pace, everything from quick news hits to digital features accompanying the articles on our ONO website to long-form documentary series, such as the massively successful Year in Space, which we’ve had many iterations of over the last year. Time Inc. has really been able to serve a varied audience with its varied titles. We have Travel + Leisure, Food & Wine, Southern Living, People en Espanol. Everywhere there’s an incredible demand for video, the company can be there.
The major challenge that we’ve dealt with as we’re growing faster than the technology in place could keep up … So when I started here, the 80 or so people on the video staff, not all were connected to central storage. The only archives we had were external hard drives of varying sizes, which were mostly stored in producers’ desk drawers, which is not exactly secure. There was no searchability or rich metadata attached to any of these video assets, so there was no way to know what reservoirs of content were being left untapped. We began a process where we would talk to similar-size video outlets with comparable output to see how they were using asset management systems to both store content and standardize workflows across the internal teams and external distribution based on media type.
After some site visits, proof of concepts, and extensive customization, we began to beta test our new video MAM system with some of our most skilled editorial team members and really let them kick the crap out of it. Then we simultaneously began populating our system with as many current and legacy assets as we had the bandwidth at our small team at the time to process, ’cause no one is really going to see the user value of an empty system. So we wanted to have as much available to the users as possible when it came time to do a general onboarding so we could say, “Hey, look at all this great video you can search for and use right away,” which was brand new for everybody here.
So the video staff, which was 80 3 years ago, it’s now over 300. We have 150 editors across about 25 of our flagship brands who are using our man every day. They access it and help us grow the archive. Through that, we’ve been able to support the teams that have gotten the company up to a billion monthly streams across our onsites. Company launched the People TV OTT platform, and just this week, we launched our Sports Illustrated OTT subscription VOD service. We rely heavily on the feedback from everybody, really across the board, to tell us what’s working and what’s not and also to champion the implementation of our metadata schemas, taxonomy, disaster recovery procedures, all these things that people don’t necessarily think about on a daily basis unless you’re in our field. It’s all really a lot of work for all the teams that are involved. It’s also really a lot of fun working with such a diverse group of people and content and for one of the most historically significant media companies around.
Henrik de Gyor: Dan, what are the biggest challenges and successes you’ve seen with Digital Asset Management?
Dan Rosenberg: Well, certainly lots of challenges. It can be tough not to feel overwhelmed by the vast quantity of incoming content every day, and all of it needs to be attended to one way or another. Not only is new media coming out of, constantly, from our NYC-based teams but we have producers and studios in every timezone across the country and contributors sending clips from really all over the world. And then we have the seemingly endless set of legacy content in which the metadata is inconsistent at best. Sometimes you get lucky and the producers have been great about standardizing naming conventions and keeping meticulous notes or spreadsheets. A lot of other times, it can just be, “Here, take this. I have no idea what’s on it. Have a good time.”
From a metadata standpoint, when it comes to challenges, you don’t really want to reinvent the wheel where you don’t have to. If you try stick with what’s already in place or what the users are familiar with to help increase adoption of new policy and just really help them feel comfortable. At Time Inc., we have such a vast photo and print archive that we at least had a jumping-off point to work with and some people here who have been here a while to really collaborate with. But so much of what we do in the video space is unique, and we have a branded and native content. We have a TV division that just released the Princess Diana documentary this past summer. So we all just have to work collaboratively and make the best decisions we can with the information available to us.
In terms of video-specific challenges, the technology, the cameras, the formats, it all changes what seems like every day. Producers are always going to want the latest and greatest so their videos look as good as possible. But we might not necessarily have the workflows in place to handle what just came out a week ago. So it’s important to keep the lines of communication with them open, manage their expectations, and have some approved workarounds in place if production demands actually denote using 8K or 16K or whatever is next down the pipe.
So for successes, it really seems like companies of all sizes have jumped into the digital space with two feet. They’re now coming up for air and realizing how seriously they have to take [digital] asset management or they’ll lose everything they’ve spent so much time and money investing in. I think there’s significantly more investment in technology but more importantly, the personnel around Digital Asset Management, and I think the return on investment for implementing comprehensive systems and having them run by motivated and driven people is nearly limitless. I’m also very encouraged with all the camaraderie I’m seeing in terms of digital asset professionals sharing their stories, networking, attending workshops and conferences, and of course, listening to informative podcasts like this. I think just the field is full of people who love what they do and really enjoy helping each other out and brainstorming solutions. It’s really energizing. It makes it fun to not only come to work every day but to be involved in the space.
Henrik de Gyor: Dan, what advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Dan Rosenberg: I think the most important thing is to understand that there’s no magic product that’s going to solve all your problems. There’s never going to be one solution to anything, so it’s crucial to do your research. One file that goes into our system hits at least six different pieces of technology from six different vendors during its life cycle, and getting everything to play nice isn’t always easy. You don’t always need to reinvent the wheel or do it all yourself to prove how smart you are. Chances are there’s a handful of people out there, whether internally or externally, who have seen a similar challenge and often they’re happy to help you out. So don’t be afraid to reach out to people within your network.
Also, I think it’s important to try to take in as much information as you can, document it, because in Digital Asset Management, we are the record keepers and people expect us to know where all the bodies are buried. So work in collaboration with your content teams, get involved as early as you can in their processes so you can understand them and help guide them. I’ve really found that 20 minutes on the front end of a project can save you days or weeks on the back end of trying to decipher what happened.
Some days it feels overwhelming, but you should have confidence in your methods and understand that everybody makes mistakes but what’s important is to learn and improve and refine. I also think it’s important to think like the clients or users and have their processes in mind. How are they creating things? How are they searching for things? How will they try and game the system if you let them? Everybody should be acting like teammates and working towards the same goals of putting the best products out there, but each segment of the business starts in a different place with different marching orders, so just getting everybody to understand asset management is the hub of where creation, innovation, distribution, and IT all come together. If you take the role seriously and have some fun, the people around you will too.