“The measure of intelligence is the ability to change” said Albert Einstein. The same rule could be applied to your digital asset management (DAM) system. A system that is built with flexibility and the ability to change at the forefront of the offering is better suited to meet your needs today and into the future. Let me explain why you should look for a system which is flexible and some of the benefits you will gain.
It grows as you grow
Nothing is more frustrating than buying something you don’t need or use. With an inflexible DAM system, you may be forced to purchase modules or features that you do not need or want, you may want them down the line, but because the system is inflexible you are forced to purchase now or not have access in the future. The purchaser ends up paying a large cost for some functionality that they don’t need or are left out in the cold without the features they want in the future. Choose a system that allows you to start with whatever set of functionalities you need to begin with and can be expanded when you are up to speed and genuinely require the extra functionality.
Flexible underlying architecture
The underlying structure that your DAM system sits on also needs to be flexible to meet your needs and not cost you a small fortune. Most DAM vendors will say that they manipulate and customise their platform to the needs of your business. But always double check whether this can be done within the existing software and without the need for custom development, or whether it is necessary to do custom development to achieve what you want. While there is no issue with custom development per se, it can cause issues in the future. For example, upgrades may be difficult because of codebase compatibility issues. This means that there may be extra hidden costs down the line when you have to pay for your upgrades, or worse still you will be left languishing on an old version of the DAM system that cannot be upgraded and will eventually be unsupported. Make sure you receive reassurances from your vendor that the system architecture has built-in, flexible, upgradable set-up options that don’t require development, so that you will always have access to the latest version of the product.
Able to handle peaks of activity
Like any IT system, your digital asset management system will experience peaks and troughs of usage. These could be daily as some users sleep and others are active, weekly as users have time off, or seasonal based around a specific event or campaign. As a DAM buyer, you want a system that can grow to handle more and more users, or to reduce activity in certain parts of the system as others become more popular. An inflexible system that does not have enough capacity to deal with peaks will be slow and deliver a poor user experience, while an inflexibly large system will simply end up being too expensive. Choose a DAM system that is flexible enough to scale up and down to meet your requirements.
You need a flexible system that meets your requirements today and into the future so that you have features and tools that you need, are not paying more than you need to for capacity and functionality you don’t need, and are able to make the small changes to the system that meet your brand and user’s needs.