Another DAM Podcast

Audio about Digital Asset Management


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What does a Digital Asset Manager need to know?

Based on the blog post from Another DAM blog,

Written and read by Henrik de Gyor


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Another DAM Podcast interview with Carol Thomas-Knipes on Digital Asset Management

Here are the questions asked:

  • How are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
  • How does a health care organization use Digital Asset Management?
  • What advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?

Transcript:

Henrik de Gyor: This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset
Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Carol
Thomas Knipes.
Carol, how are you?
Carol Thomas Knipes: [0:10] I’m doing great. Thank you, Henrik.
Henrik: [0:12] Good. Carol, how are you involved with Digital Asset
Management?
Carol: [0:15] I’m the administrator of the Digital Asset Management System for
a pharmaceutical agency. Essentially, what that means, I administer but I also
design the workflows around that system, and other digital kind of creative
technology that we have going on at the agency.

[0:33] I not only administer the DAM, I’m also in the situation where I drive the workflows that work with the DAM. So I try to have a more unified digital system that we have here. I administer it, everything down to creating folder structures, the actual system stuff, the
actual server set up, dealing with server updates, any of those issues.
[0:58] Actually banging in there, going command line, and doing a lot of that
stuff. All the way to creating taxonomies and dealing with metadata. Then the
process and workflows around that.
Henrik: [1:10] How does a healthcare organization use Digital Asset
Management?
Carol: [1:15] For us, it’s this two fold thing. It originally was purchased for two
primary reasons. The first one, was to control licensing that we had on a lot of
images that we get by stock houses that have really specific licensing. Especially
as a health care agency, when we’re releasing files and working with files,
making sure that rights managed art is licensed properly and isn’t used when
it’s not, is particularly important.

[1:45] But also, it serves to actually give us an organizational structure, to be able to be a lot more efficient. It broke down the divisions within different departments. Particularly between production and creative. For us to be able to actually have files moved through the various departments very seamlessly without duplication, ensuring that there are checks and balances for things like art and art licensing, art done at multiple stages.
[2:15] Because of the way the DAM works, it kind of works both as an efficiency
tool and as an asset management tool.
Henrik: [2:22] All very important, thanks. What advice would you like to share
with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Carol: [2:29] The landscape, at the moment, appears to be shifting a little bit.
I recently went to Henry Stuart, and found out what was going on there. There
seemed to be a lot of things going on at the moment, trying to combine multiple
types of systems, like CRM with DAM with document management. All sorts
of things. The biggest thing is, you have to keep up on what’s going on, without
letting it spiral you into a tailspin of drastically changing what you have. [3:00]
You have to both have the bird’s eye view of what’s going on in your organization,
and how the DAM can help what they’re doing. If you see things along
the way that could help, great. But also realize that everything is changing so
quickly, by the time you go through the processes in your organization to get
buy in on a particular type of technology, it frankly might be out of date. So it
really is a matter of taking a look, picking and choosing your battles as to what
you’re going to do.
[3:30] Then if you’ve got a big enterprise DAM system, try your hardest to find
your change champions and try to find a way to integrate as much of the organization’s
other systems into the workflow dealing with the DAM. Because if you
do that, you’ll not only have a better impression of your DAM, better buy in. But
you also will definitely have a more connected, unified system that you can use
for multiple purposes.
[3:55] That really is it. Keep your eyes open, but also be realistic about what you
really need. Some people call it “shiny ball syndrome”. Don’t look at the pretty
new thing thinking you have to get it. You’ve got to think about what is going to
help your organization.
Henrik: [4:12] Thanks, Carol.
Carol: [4:14] You’re welcome.
Henrik: [4:17] For more on Digital Asset Management, log onto
AnotherDAMblog.com. Another DAM Podcast is available on Audioboom,
Blubrry, iTunes and the Tech Podcast Network. Thanks again.


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Another DAM Podcast interview with Tracy Guza on Digital Asset Management

Here are the questions asked:

  • How are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
  • What are the biggest challenges for dealing with creative assets in a DAM system?
  • What advice would you like to share with DAM Professionals and people aspiring to become DAM Professionals?

Transcript:

Henrik de Gyor: [0:02] This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset
Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Tracy Guza. Tracy,
how are you?
Tracy Guza: [0:11] I’m very good. How are you?
Henrik: [0:12] Good. Tracy, how are you involved with Digital Asset
Management?
Tracy: [0:16] Currently I work at Corbis. Corbis Images is a stock photo and
various other creative types of format company, and I am part of a small internal
team in editorial photography that creates custom content for a client of ours. I
manage their Digital Asset Management system.
Henrik: [0:41] What are the biggest challenges for dealing with creative assets
in a Digital Asset Management system?
Tracy: [0:45] Well, currently my challenges are somewhat different than previously.
I have worked in Digital Asset Management for some time at a variety
of advertising agencies. I’m pretty used to creative users and how they search.
One of the things I’ve found, over the years, is that the way that a library or
information professional might consider keywording items is not necessarily
the way that an art director or a designer would search for the items. [1:20] It’s
really helpful, as in any case, to do some kind of user analysis to figure out and
to know your clientele, to figure out how your user base is searching for things.
And how to intuitively keyword things and create a vocabulary that’s tailored to
the users, more so than a 100 percent kosher library science management thesaurus
or vocabulary. While structure is lovely and consistency is great and one
of the reasons that a vocabulary is important, that vocabulary can be flexible
and it can be tailored to your users.
[1:57] One of the other huge issues that comes up a lot in creative agencies
is the licensing and rights associated with different creative assets. Whether
they’re images, video clips or audio clips. Usually, especially with stock images,
when an image is purchased, it is purchased for a particular usage if it’s a rights
managed image. That usage can be very specific. It can be something as specific
as, “We’re buying this image once, for three months, for 10 publications in
North America, with a print run up to a million.”
[2:34] If that is not communicated jointly, with the asset, in a way that users can
see and notice, there can be some legal ramifications and infringement can
occur. One of the things that’s important is to look at whatever DAM system is
being used and figure out how you can best flag images or assets that have particular
restrictions. Is there a way to create permissions only for certain users?
[3:04] Is there a way to create an HTML popup that wants people that, “Hey, this
image has some particular restrictions to it. If you’re not using it for X, Y and Z,
you shouldn’t be using it.” Because generally, the users, especially in a creative
agency, aren’t legal professionals. Nor do they have regular access to legal
professionals. But they can get a company in a lot of trouble by using things that
they’re not supposed to use.
[3:35] Often times, especially in the stock industry, the fees for infringing on use
or using something that you haven’t licensed properly, are much higher than
the costs for just licensing the image properly and using it correctly. That’s a
big thing.
Henrik: [3:52] So rights management and permissions management, as far
as licensing and permissions for the use of any asset. That’s a very key thing
to reduce liability as much as possible, as far as appropriate use of assets.
Great point.
Tracy: [4:07] Yes. And what can be challenging is not only educating the users
that licensing restrictions exist. But also helping them, by using the system to
the best of your ability to make it easy for them to discover what the rights are
that are associated with the asset. It shouldn’t be hidden in 64 metadata fields.
It should be easy for them to find out.
Henrik: [4:30] What advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and
people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Tracy: [4:34] It’s interesting. The way that I got into this, originally, was working
at a particular advertising agency. I was doing a lot of project management and
production kinds of things. I was very familiar with the clients and with the workflow
in creative services. So I was asked to do, as a consultant, a freelance project
to organize all of the client assets at the agency. At that time, the workflow
was changing. [5:04] It was right when you were able to buy like four terabytes of
storage really cheap. Suddenly, everybody could use super huge, high-resolution
images.
[5:24] So we had literally file cabinets full of CDs. This is how crazy it was.
Where those images were the high-resolution images that corresponded to the
low-resolution images on the server. No one [laughs] had any way to match anything
up or find anything.
[5:42] So the company purchased a very basic DAM product, and I was asked
to actually put everything in there for the first time. It changed our workflow. It
changed how people needed to use things. I realized at the time, this was about
six or seven years ago, how much I still needed to know.
[6:03] I created a vocabulary on the fly and realized that I needed to know a lot
more about metadata and tried to figure out ways to customize the search fields
and so forth so that we could get a prompt when an image license was about
to expire and stuff like that. I was a little over my head, so what I did was I went
back to library [laughs] school.
[6:27] I got an MLIS , and I found that that program really helped to fill out for me
all of my questions about different kinds of technology, backend database programming
stuff as well as the very basics of SRS [?] vocabulary development and
a lot about metadata. So my advice is not only to network, which is a wonderful
thing, but also to figure out what kind of additional education you may need.
[6:57] There’s something to be said for being in an organization and realizing
that maybe you have the aptitude to organize their assets. There’s another thing
to be said for making sure that you actually can back that up a little bit with
some tangible courses, workshops, or whatever form they take. It really helped
me to formalize the way that I think about how I work on DAM now.
[7:24] That’s my advice, and it seems to be a very much growing field as the
amount of digital assets grows. Certainly companies finally realize the value in
retrieval and the cost effectiveness of allowing people self-service access to
DAM systems. There’s more and more of a need for DAM professionals.
Henrik: [7:43] Very true. Did you want to share your blog with the audience
as well?
Tracy: [7:48] Oh, I would love to. It’s modlibrarian.posterous.comhttps://modlibrarian.wordpress.com/
Henrik: [7:55] For more on this and other Digital Asset Management topics log
onto AnotherDAMblog.com. Another DAM Podcast is available on Audioboom,
Blubrry, iTunes and the Tech Podcast Network. Thanks again.


Listen to Another DAM Podcast on Apple PodcastsAudioBoomCastBoxGoogle Podcasts, RadioPublic, Spotify, TuneIn, and wherever you find podcasts.


Need Digital Asset Management advice and assistance?

Another DAM Consultancy can help. Schedule a call today


Another DAM Podcast interview with Ulla de Stricker on Digital Asset Management

Ulla de Stricker discusses Digital Asset Management

Here are the questions asked:

  • How are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
  • You recently co-authored a book titled “The Information and Knowledge Professional’s Career Handbook” along with co-author Jill Hurst-Wahl. I believe Digital Asset Management could be categorized under the umbrella of Information Management. What inspired you to write this book?
  • What is so different about careers in the field of Information and Knowledge Professionals than any other?
  • Is this book just for beginners entering this career path?
  • What advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?

Transcript:

Henrik de Gyor: [0:01] This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset
Management (DAM). I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Ulla de
Stricker. Ulla, how are you?
Ulla de Stricker: [0:11] Fine. Thank you very much.
Henrik: [0:13] Ulla, how are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
Ulla: [0:16] As a consultant I’m involved in everything my clients care about
when it comes to information and knowledge management broadly defined.
Information objects of all kinds, including DAMs of course, are an element in any organization strategy for support to knowledge workers, and I strive to point my clients to the options available and to advise them about the ramifications of those options.
Henrik: [0:40] You recently coauthored a book titled “The Information and
Knowledge Professional’s Career Handbook” along with coauthor Jill Hurst-
Wahl, which I interviewed in the past. I believe Digital Asset Management could be categorized under the umbrella of information management. What inspired you to write this book?
Ulla: [0:58] Jill and I are what you might call “natural mentors.” We’ve always ended up in situations where we discuss career matters with our colleagues and our students in particular. So without being able to pinpoint the exact moment, we did get to a point where we arrived at this collective insight, “Why don’t we just write it all down?” So we set about distilling our answers to the many questions we’ve heard over the years.

[1:26] Our intention was to capture general advice in one place so that potentially our individual conversations with readers could be more personal and focused. But primarily, however, we wanted to give
our colleagues and particularly new entrants to the profession a heads up about all the things you need to think about in your career but never had a chance to focus on in graduate school.
[1:53] Speaking for myself, I certainly discovered that technical skills are only one part of the tool kit we need. I learned the hard way about organizational politics, about being the boss, about interpersonal dynamics, and so on and so on. So you might say the book actually addresses practitioners in a lot of professions. We felt comfortable though speaking to colleagues in those fields where we have personally built our reputations.
[2:21] We’d love to see the book become a graduation gift and a bible for
younger colleagues. That way our suggestions can travel a lot further afield than through personal interactions in meetings and workshops.
Henrik: [2:35] Excellent. So what is so different about careers in the field of
information management professionals than any other?
Ulla: [2:45] I’m so glad you asked it. First, I want to stress how exciting it is to see all the many new opportunities out there for graduates of iSchools. I think we’re still only scratching the surface, and there’s a lot of outreach still to do to orient managers about how the skills of iSchool graduates apply across a vast spectrum of organizational functions. [3:08] But I always encourage those looking for a career to check out the information profession. You and I, Henrik, know it isn’t true, contrary to widespread opinion, that the Internet has reduced the need for professionals who know their way around information management. That said, I need to be honest about what I call the opacity of our profession.
[3:31] You can’t imagine the number of times I’ve heard my colleagues comment on the surprising amount of explaining they found themselves having to do. Sometimes we commiserate among ourselves that perhaps we ought to have considered pharmacy or some other field where clients understand immediately what we do without any further explanation.
[3:51] As an illustration, nobody with a sick pet is in any doubt about the need for or value of a veterinarian, and no one with a leaky roof questions the need for and value of a roofer. Yes, police officers, transport truck drivers, the road repair crews, etc, etc, do not have to explain why they should exist. But we information professionals do.
[4:19] A major factor is the conundrum I’ll never solve that we deal largely in intangibles. We can’t prove that we are adding dollars to the bottom line or that we’re saving lives. So our costs could look like reasonable candidates for cuts when managers are under pressure to slash their budgets. We can convince those managers it’s prudent to equip knowledge workers with authoritative information, and it’s prudent to safeguard corporate memory and so on.
[4:50] But we cannot get away from the fact that information services are, by  their nature, labor intensive and expensive. Before the first customer can find an answer to a question or find an information object, there’s content to pay for, staff to pay for, IT infrastructure to put in place, and so on. It’s understandable to me when a senior executive asks bluntly, “What am I getting for that six or seven-figure line item called the Corporate Information Center?”
[5:21] I’m sure your DAM colleagues recognize the challenge. The bottom line for this nurse is that in our professions practitioners must always be ready to justify their worth. It’s for that reason that one of the chapters in the book deals with crafting business cases.
Henrik: [5:39] So, is this book just for beginners entering this career path?
Ulla: [5:43] Certainly, Jill and I did intend the book for graduate students and recent graduates, but we speak equally to mid-career professionals who may be asking themselves, “What’s next?” We advocate an attitude of personal control.
Oh, yes. It’s true. A new graduate may take that first job because the bills have to be paid. But throughout our working lives every one of us are making choices and plans for the future. [6:10] So that’s why we emphasize in one chapter the need for every single professional to ascertain what’s a group cultural fit and, then to orchestrate choices and activities toward that fit. By “fit,” I mean that, as one example, some of us are naturally happy in environments where others might not be so happy. Just consider the difference between hospitals, law firms, schools, nonprofits, and private sector companies in terms of how it feels to work there.
[6:40] As another example. We’re all unique in terms of the degree of structure and control we like to have at work, the pace we’re comfortable with, whether we like to deal with people, or whether we prefer to work independently, and so on. So, other chapters deal with universal topics, such as developing a professional brand, getting paid what we’re worth, coping with stress, mentoring others. So indeed the book is meant for our colleagues at any stage of their careers.
Henrik: [7:12] What advice would you like to share with DAM professional and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Ulla: [7:17] Let me stress again the positive news that in the future, information professionals including the DAMs will be evermore necessary to managing the explosions of digital content. The opportunities keep growing, and I’ll just throw in here, that in the last couple of weeks alone a major consulting firm in Toronto announced several new knowledge management decisions. [7:43] One little challenge does exist. It’s that in the past, we may not have focused sufficiently on marketing our skills, so we do have some competition from IT professionals as an example. So my advice focuses on marketing. My advice is that a successful career depends on developing a solid conviction about our own value and on perfecting the delivery of the explanation of it.
[8:09] I say become a walking business case. Get good at linking your activity to corporate outcomes. Estimate, for example, how much time you save other employees through your work, and then calculate the value to the organization from freeing up that time. Never mind about risk reduction and other intangible benefits. Speak about how you contribute to the overall performance of the organization you work for and use the language stakeholders understand.
[8:39] In other words become a career long advocate for good information practices.
Does that make sense, Henrik?
Henrik: [8:46] Definitely. Well, thanks Ulla. Thanks to also your publisher,
Chandos, who is giving us a complimentary copy. For the first time on this
podcast series we’re able to give away a copy of the book. The book is again
The Information and Knowledge Professionals Career Handbook” by Jill Hurst-Wahl and Ulla de Stricker. [9:08] The contest between the date of the release of this podcast through the month of August 2011, if you subscribed to Another DAM Blog, that’s AnotherDAMblog.com and AnotherDAMpodcast.com, you
will be entered in the contest immediately. If you are drawn at the end of the month, the winner from that will get a free copy of the new book. Thank you so much, Ulla.
Ulla: [9:36] Well, thank you. It is indeed generous of the publisher to work with us in this way, and I can’t wait to virtually shake the hand of the winner.
Henrik: [9:45] If you would like more information about Digital Asset
Management, log onto AnotherDAMblog.com.

Another DAM Podcast is available on Audioboom, Blubrry, iTunes, and the Tech Podcast Network.
Thanks again.

Announcing the first book drawing for this podcast series…

The one winner of this drawing will receive one free copy of “The Information and Knowledge Professional’s Career Handbook” co-authored by Jill Hurst-Wahl and Ulla de Stricker. To enter the book drawing, simply subscribe to both Another DAM podcast and Another DAM blog by email on each of these websites between August 4, 2011 and August 31, 2011. The winner will be picked from the pool of email subscribers of both Another DAM podcast and Another DAM blog together. The drawing will occur on the first week of September 2011 with a third party drawing the name of the winner. The winner will be announced on Another DAM podcast and Another DAM blog. If you are already an email subscriber to both Another DAM podcast and Another DAM blog, you are automatically entered in this book drawing. The winner will be contacted directly by email for their contact details to ship the book. The book will be shipped directly from the publisher. Good luck to all.


Listen to Another DAM Podcast on Apple PodcastsAudioBoomCastBoxGoogle Podcasts, RadioPublic, Spotify, TuneIn, and wherever you find podcasts.


Need Digital Asset Management advice and assistance?

Another DAM Consultancy can help. Schedule a call today