As museums continue to generate more and more digital assets, it becomes increasingly clear how important it is to find the right Digital Asset Management System (DAMS) for your institution.
New digital assets are constantly added through existing Museum Collections Management Software: new additions to collections come with accompanying digital media and current collections require updated photography. Departments across the organization also create and require access to digital media, including marketing, education, public relations, fundraising, facilities management, and visitor services. It is therefore crucial that your whole organization can access and share assets when they need them.
By selecting the right Digital Asset Management Software for your museum, you can ensure it works with the systems you already have in place—while simplifying your workflows, improving communication between teams, breaking down any potential interdepartmental barriers, and ensuring your institution is set up for long-term success. Our experts have gathered some best practices to help your team make the best decision. All those involved in the process, from the Registrar to the Digital Asset Manager, the IT Manager, and everyone in between, will find useful information in our free guide.
Going Beyond Collections Management
Your Museum Collections Management Software and the Digital Asset Management Software you decide to implement will most likely have a few things in common. Collections management software often includes Digital Asset Management features that your Collections Manager already uses. As we already noted, your Digital Asset Management Software will be used by multiple departments throughout your institution, and it can be difficult and time consuming to fully train members of the marketing, fundraising, or outreach teams to use a data-heavy and complex Collections Management System.
As your digital collection grows, it is important to ensure you have a DAMS that makes it easy for the whole team to stay organized. With the right Digital Asset Management System, you can tailor the dashboard to only display the information relevant to each team. When selecting the right tool, you can also prioritize ease of use depending on your staffs’ needs and familiarity with software.
Two Systems, One Workflow
While it’s important to have your Digital Asset Management Software separate from your CMS, it’s equally important that the two systems are compatible. As you decide which software is right for your organization, consider your current workflows and how you want to improve or change it with the addition of a DAMS. Making sure they’re aligned and easily integrated is the best way to encourage a smooth transition for your entire organization.
Finding the Right Vendor
There are a number of things to consider when selecting Digital Asset Management Software, and the vendor’s reputation is at the top of the list. Look for a company with experience working with organizations like yours and ask a lot of questions to ensure they’ll understand your unique challenges and be able to offer the support, solutions, and services you’ll need.
Some questions to consider asking when doing your research:
- Is this company established? Have they worked with museums and similar organizations? How long have they been doing so?
- Do they understand the needs of museums and organizations with large collections? How do they demonstrate that?
- Have they worked with organizations with similar size or type of collections?
- What does their customer care and support look like?
- How does their offering work with your current IT solution?
- How compatible is their product with your current Collections Management Software?
- What is the cost, and what does it include?
- Do they understand the role of digital asset management in a collections environment?
While it is an important consideration, price should not be the only—or most heavily-weighted—factor. Things like ease of use, integration with your current systems, access to support and training, and how the product will help your organization overall are just as important to keep in mind.
Collections and Digital Asset Management—All in One Place
If you’d like your Collections Management Software and Digital Asset Management Software to be as compatible as possible, Gallery System’s TMS Suite is one way to ensure all your museum software works together cohesively, saving time and effort when it comes to workflows, processes, and organization-wide adoption.
The TMS Suite is a collection of products to manage, organize, and share your objects and digital assets. With TMS Media Studio, you’ll be up and running much faster than with other DAM solutions, saving you time, money, and simplifying your implementation process.
When you choose TMS Media Studio as your Digital Asset Management Software, you can:
- Centralize the management of the digital assets you have now as well as a scalable system for future assets.
- Assign user-specific permissions so each team can only access the files they need.
- Set up metadata and taxonomy to quickly search a large database of digital assets.
- Put workflows in place for photography requests, rights management, copyright clearance, and more.
- Allow users to link assets to external loans, objects, exhibitions, constituents, event, and bibliography records.
- Align your entire team from loans, shipping, events, exhibitions, and other related departments in the organization by including digital asset management within one suite of products.
By using an interconnected system like TMS Suite, you have access to your entire collections data no matter which program you’re using. A standalone DAMS product will require time to both add your data and integrate the product with your current museum collections management software. TMS Suite’s holistic ecosystem circumvents any downtime typically associated with data synchronizations.
Click below to download the detailed guide “How to Select the Right Digital Asset Management System for Your Museum”:
Partnering with Gallery Systems
To help make better collections management a reality and strengthen public engagement in your collections–objects and digital assets, Gallery Systems offers software applications and services to help you manage collections of any size or type, and allow you to dynamically publish information to your website, intranet, and kiosks. Contact us to learn more.