Kick-starting Innovation in Digital Asset Management

Topics: Digital Asset Management

It feels like the Digital Asset Management industry is poised for a shakeup, driven by rapid changes in the wider software development industry.  DAM vendors need to embrace changes in process, such as lean-startup, agile and DevOps, and in technology, such as cloud services, microservices and JavaScript front-ends. DAM solutions must become adaptable DAM platforms.


I discussed all this, and more, in an article, Creating The Right Conditions For Innovation in DAM, for Digital Asset Management News, as part of its Improving DAM In 2017 series.

The series is focused on answering the questions: "has innovation in digital asset management stalled?" and "if so, what can we do about it?" The main points I make in this article are:

  • The digital asset management industry is mature (in software product terms) and many of the quick-win solutions have been implemented. For this reason, the rate of innovation in DAM has inevitably slowed.
  • It can be kick-started by having an adaptable DAM platform that can support experiments (leveraging new technology) and by exploring new business domains.
  • Most DAM vendors use third-party technology in their solutions. There is nothing wrong with that, it means they can release new features quickly (and avoid reinventing the wheel), although it means they are often are dependent on advances in those technologies to drive innovation.
  • Cloud services offered as APIs by third-parties mean it is now relatively easy to integrate emerging, innovative technology into a DAM solution - as long as the DAM software is architected in the right way.
  • Changes in the wider software development industry, such as lean-startup, agile and cloud development and deployment, will affect the DAM industry (and they already are). This is a good thing.
  • DAM solutions will change from being viewed as a single application for managing photos and videos to a platform underpinning many other applications used across the enterprise.
  • Out-of-the-box (one-size-fits-all) software products and custom-developed solutions will merge as technology makes it easy to reuse components (and to plug them together) and users demand user interfaces that support their business workflows exactly.
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