No DAM is an Island – Why DAM Vendors Need Neutral Content Digital Asset Hubs


I recently wrote an article for the CI Hub blog, Why DAM Vendors Need Neutral Content Digital Asset Hubs, which discusses the need for vendor neutral content digital asset hubs.  Interoperability and the immense difficulty associated with transferring digital assets across the DAM supply chain remains the single biggest obstacle to the take-up of DAM.

To be able to provide true content integration, DAM vendors need to address the friction that arises from the problems outlined above, namely the issue of bridging the workflow gap between multiple digital asset supply chain storage repositories and attempting to unify access to digital assets regardless of the DAM, MAM, BAM, PIM, CMS or cloud storage platform that houses them.  The obvious solution is an intermediary that is capable of drawing in assets from multiple locations. Instead of a DAM system attempting to connect to multiple digital asset repositories, a third-party digital asset hub would turn this approach on its head by allowing the user to open up their chosen software (e.g. Adobe Creative Suite, WordPress, Microsoft 365) and tap into multiple DAM systems, cloud storage providers, and third-party services.” [Read More]

I have talked about this issue with a lot of different people in DAM, but the only ones who really seem to understand it properly are either tool developers or partners of DAM vendors – who quite often will be tasked with having to integrate DAMs both upstream and downstream across the digital asset supply chain.  Short-sighted vendors (which is unfortunately a sizeable majority of them) want to pretend that other solutions and technologies do not exist.  Quite why this is the case, is hard to say, in some cases, it is because they think there is no demand for this kind of functionality from DAM end-users, which is patently untrue.

A second issue which must be acknowledged is the tendency of Digital Asset Managers and archivists to treat interoperability as someone else’s problem also.  When the subject gets presented, you’ll hear a lot of positive sounding noises, but an assumption that the issue is technical in-nature and therefore out of their realm as a concern for them personally.  This is not true either.  Inefficient digital asset supply chains caused by messy and/or manual approaches to integration create lots of unnecessary work for everyone concerned which drains productivity and makes it more likely that funding will not be released by senior management to extend DAM programmes (or even keep them running at all in some cases).

From what I gather based on the people I speak to in DAM (which is a broad cross section from users through to vendors and partners) there are a number of products and initiatives that are coming to the DAM market which will better facilitate integration.  If you’re involved in DAM in 2022 (in any capacity) you need to be fully abreast of the issues and solutions to help streamline Digital Asset Supply Chains.

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