Guru Call: USA

Looking for a Guru in PA, USA. Member works in the fashion industry and would like to see how other DAMs in similar sectors are configured in relation to search function and metadata processes. Interested in expanding skill sets of DAM beyond current system.

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Guru Call: USA

Looking for a Guru in MO, USA. Member seeks assistance with best practices in managing assets for video production. Member has experience with Storage DNA as an archive system and would like direction on using metadata within the software.

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Guru Talk: Sue Barrett – Arizona State University

Sue Barrett - Educational TechnologistWorking in the field of Digital Asset Management for multiple higher education institutions, Barrett understands the importance of planning for high volume content to avoid costly mistakes.

What companies/organizations have you worked for as a DAM professional? What was your role at each?
I currently provide project planning and guide metadata management in the institutional repository and curricular management systems for a public university. I have worked for several websites and two universities as a DAM professional. Managing the online image libraries for websites started my interest in DAMS.

I learned a lot about digital access and electronic information workflows in those positions. At the two public universities, I worked in eLearning, technical project management, information lifecycle analysis and records management. I specialize in moving image and digital film preservation.

How do you describe digital asset management to others?

DAM is a stewardship plan that mitigates the risk of loss by providing a strategy to curate and preserve digital assets. Digital assets are dependent upon technology, and access is the key to all DAM systems. There will always be new technology tools, and creating an adaptable strategy for digital survival allows your staff and DAM system to be agile and responsive to change.

How did you learn DAM? Any recommended sources?

I learned DAM as part of a master’s program in library and information science, where I trained as an audiovisual archivist, and through on-the-job training. There is a selection of digital preservation resources available on my website at http://dmia.drupalgardens.com/content/resources, and I have found the following resources to be helpful:

What’s the most important thing for someone new to DAM to understand about DAM?

Plan and take your time. DAM is a permanent part of information management and extensive planning will help avoid costly mistakes. Take time to query other institutions, gather feedback and collaborate with peers and professionals.

If you weren’t doing DAM as a career, what would you be doing?

Running the empire for George Lucas.

What is your ongoing greatest challenge with DAM?

Convincing institutional administrators to provide the necessary people and financial resources to support a robust, secure and long-term DAM system is my greatest challenge.

What is your vision for DAM? What will it look like in 5 years?

I sincerely hope that international federated systems and Web scale operations are available for DAM in the next five years. Creating a system for shared data will enable collaboration between diverse institutions and support the creation of new knowledge by eliminating data silos.

What was your biggest mistake with regard to DAM?

My biggest DAM mistake was trying to retroactively assign metadata elements to an existing repository collection. I quickly realized that I had gone down a rabbit hole and the Red Queen was on her head. Now I plan controlled vocabularies in advance and add as much metadata as possible at ingest to improve access. We have limited time and resources, and I learned to keep moving forward with existing projects. I only retroactively adjust metadata when absolutely necessary now.

What was your biggest success with regard to DAM?

My greatest DAM success was managing implementation of a university-wide tenure review process, which transformed an inefficient paper process. Each year, university faculty members collect evidence of their academic and research efforts in pursuit of tenure or promotion, and submit up to nine linear feet of documents for evaluation. Multiply each portfolio by more than 250 individuals and you can imagine the complexity and volume of the document management. Faculty members with multimedia materials would print still frames or generate transcripts. Digitizing this workflow resulted in considerable savings in staff time and physical material handling. The DAM system is available 24/7, provides analytics and secures protected information for long-term management. While it was not the largest DAM project I have managed, it delivered the greatest return on investment and user satisfaction.

What more would you like to learn about DAM?
I would like to learn more about employing metadata schema crosswalks and interoperability methods.

[box]More from Sue Barrett: In July of 2014, Sue presented the webinar, “Essential DAM Planning for Museums.” Click the link to view the webinar recording.[/box]
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Guru Talk: Jill Fisher – Ithaca College

Jill Fischer - Publications Assistant

Having worked in digital asset management since 2000, Fischer notes that server compatibility to DAM systems is a key component to maintaining up-to-date versions of DAM software.

What companies/organizations have you worked for as a DAM professional? What was your role at each?

I have been at Ithaca College for the last 20 years doing work in DAM since 2000. My previous work experience was in offset printing for many years before coming to Ithaca College. I was hired primarily to work with the Manager of Printing Services in scheduling, quoting, and producing work with printers and graphic designers. I was also managing the slide collection and a good portion of the black & white picture collection. The slide collection was really the original assets that were added to our DAM. We sent them to be scanned as Kodak PCD files and then loaded them for use. In the beginning I was backup to the graphic designer that started the work on the asset management system. She has since retired and I have been managing it since 2006. We are now adding the digital images, our packaged print files and videos to our system.

How do you describe digital asset management to others?

I explain to others that it is where we put images and print files to make them available to the campus community and those who need to use or access them.

How did you learn DAM? Any recommended sources?

I have learned mostly by using the system and using the technical manuals. When this was started there wasn’t much information out there and very few choices in systems. I also went to a vendor show in New York City in 2000. Maybe it’s time to do that again! There is much more web information available now.

What’s the most important thing for someone new to DAM to understand about DAM?

Setting up how you organize your assets is very important. Our system began by filing images in the same manner as our slide and picture collection. It can be hard as people interpret images in very different ways as to how they should be sorted. Be open to suggestions as to how the structure works best for as many as possible.

If you weren’t doing DAM as a career, what would you be doing?

Since I have most of my experience in the printing field I would probably be working at something there.

What is your ongoing greatest challenge with DAM?

It has been hard to have the DAM vendor keep up with software upgrades. I have to be careful about just upgrading the graphic software by testing that the plug-ins for the system will work, or that they have plugins. I went for about 6 months not being able to add new files because the system wouldn’t display the files correctly. I currently can’t upgrade to the newest DAM software because our server is not compatible.

What was your biggest mistake with regard to DAM?

A consultant came in to look at our system when I first took it over and directed me to organize the assets on the server in numerous folders within folders. Six years later the vendor said this was causing the system to over work in searching for assets. I had to reorganize assets and it took about a year. I don’t know that I would have done this differently but it made for a lot of extra work.

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Guru Call: USA

Looking for a Guru in CA, USA.  Member has MLIS and is looking for some guidance on best practices for digital asset management. Familiar with ResourceSpace and works within the education sector.

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Guru Talk: Shannon Davis – Alberta Tourism

 

Shannon Davis - Tead Lead - Alberta Tourism Digital Assets Library

Having held multiple roles in the Digital Asset Management field, Davis understands the importance of conferences and networking events within the industry.

What companies/organizations have you worked for as a DAM professional? What was your role at each?

Although I recently transitioned to another position within Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation, I was the Acting Team Lead for the Digital Assets Library for the Ministry.  I managed all aspects of the Digital Assets Library, including consulting and collaborating with industry stakeholders, tourism industry and all levels of government to develop needs assessments and asset acquisition plans.

Identifying industry needs and marketing opportunities when coordinating image and footage shoots, and then managing the distribution out to industry professionals, media and other government agencies through, first, an in-house built DAM system, and then later a purchased DAM system.

My team was responsible for asset distribution, license tracking, content audits and data analysis. Prior to being the Team Lead, I was a Digital Assets Consultant with the Ministry, dealing with distribution on our in-house DAM and working with the tourism industry on content audits and asset acquisition.

How did you learn DAM? Any recommended sources?

I learned DAM through trial and error.  I was originally hired because I was an Alberta content expert.  It was a challenging process. I would certainly recommend additional training or mentorship.

What’s the most important thing for someone new to DAM to understand about DAM?

Technology changes very quickly, so you need to be on top of trends, and it is important to continually evaluate your requirements. Continual learning is essential. Try to get to some of the conferences so that you can network. Don’t work in a vacuum! Being able to share experiences—both wins and learnings—is essential to creating and maintaining a successful DAM.

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Guru Call: India

Looking for a Guru in India. Member is new to DAM world and like to learn more about digital asset management.

Seeking assistance with how to migrate assets from one source to another and key areas like Metadata, Taxonomy, XMP and Workflows.

Newbie speaks English.

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Guru Call: USA

Looking for a Guru in NY, USA. Member looking to start a dialogue with someone in the DAM industry who has experience with Portfolio. Insight to possible pitfalls or considerations they may not have considered would be appreciated. Member works in the non-profit sector.

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