Agencies, in-house teams, freelancers – no matter who you are, our working lives are dominated by digital content. So what’s the challenge heading into 2020, and more importantly, what can you do to increase both the wellbeing and productivity of your team?
A new survey has explored the impact of an ever-increasing volume of digital content. The People Cost of Content report reveals teams in our industry waste 13 days per staff member every year hunting for digital assets and filing content.
So, here are five ways to help you boost your team and productivity...
Get everybody working in the same way
Not by endless training and policing, but by putting tools in place that mean everybody has to work in a consistent way. This can range from the adoption of a communication tool like Slack, to a team workflow management app like Asana – but when it comes to saving time lost storing, searching for, and sharing files, the latest Digital Asset Management (‘DAM’) software is ideal. No more saving to desktops, shared servers or full Dropbox and Google Drive accounts. DAM means files are tagged and easily searchable so you can find what you need regardless of whether you’ve worked in the team for 5 years or 5 minutes!
Streamline agency, in-house and freelancer relationships
Often your files for a particular project are all saved in a master folder location. It may not be appropriate to grant full access to the entirety of that content to a third-party. Nor is it desirable to have to regularly split files into multiple folders. With DAM, admins can allow an approved individual or team access to only the assets you require them to have.
Version control is also a common problem for creatives, particularly when working on collaborative projects. Different studios or agencies can unwittingly be working concurrently on different versions of a project file. Clients will undertake a review but of which version?
DAM helps to solve this with clear version control. It manages updates to all types of files, including images, presentations and documents – it’s a way for teams to ensure all versions of digital assets are up-to-date.
Make those small design changes faster
Do you wish you had a pound, dollar or Euro for every time someone said: “Can we just make it a bit more…?”
The integration of graphic design programmes within a dedicated DAM solution also helps boost efficiency. For example, DAM software integrates with Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop. This enables faster editing, particularly where quick and simple changes are required. Work on the file where it’s stored, rather than launch the design programme before resaving to the right location.
There’s no danger designers will save their updates to a local destination where others cannot see nor access their new version.
Spin up a custom-branded portal to make your latest assets instantly available
Uploading and sending files to several different people can be very time consuming. If you work for a brand that offers new visual assets on a regular basis, an externally accessible library that’s customised to the brand is a great time hack. There are some great examples here.
And for many firms, being able to provide a brand portal containing prescribed assets for external parties to use is vital for global design consistency. For example, firms may have their own templates which they want to give secure access to, and through one familiar centralised system.
Equip your team for growth
Often agencies or in-house departments have their own cloud-based storage methods, including common services like Dropbox, Google Drive or Box. But in a creative environment, storage capacity and ease of sharing and access can quickly become an issue. Typically, images and files shared are high-quality and smaller agencies or start-ups in particular can run into the problem of having too much data for a smaller general system like Dropbox. Dedicated DAM software uses the likes of Amazon Web Services to offer ample storage capacity and can grow with you.
In recent years there has been an explosion of self-help advice around the benefits of decluttering and organising your life. As individuals, we’re embracing this trend but it seems that many workplaces are behind the curve when it comes to tackling their outdated digital filing practices. For both agency and in-house creative and marketing teams with high-volume, fast-growing folders, it’s a no-brainer.
Find out more in The People Cost of Content report.