How to find your DAM champion
(This article is part of a series on building a digital asset management team. Access the full resources kit here.)
As digital asset management continues to move to the heart of the enterprise, your organization may want to upgrade from your existing system or adopt a DAM for the first time. But before you purchase a new DAM solution, you'll need a team to drive it forward. A DAM solution is an investment for your business, and the best way to protect that investment is to create personal accountability. That's why a dedicated team is an integral piece of a DAM initiative. When executed properly, this initiative can allow an organization to create, find and use content quickly and efficiently.
Who's your Champion?
It all starts with a project leader, or "DAM Champion". What follows is a quick guide on what to look for to find the perfect one for your organization.
The first step for any DAM project is to simply acknowledge the need for a new tool, and the corresponding need to have dedicated resources put towards its success in the organization.
Then, it’s time to either start crafting a DAM team from scratch or aligning the right skill sets of existing personnel to share DAM roles and responsibilities. It’s no small undertaking, but there are tips and tricks that can help make the process easier and better set your project up to succeed.
Firstly, who will own the DAM initiative in your organization from a governance perspective? Someone (or multiple people) will have to work to create and facilitate a tactical digital asset management plan. Each member of the core DAM team needs to understand the journey to DAM success they are about to embark upon, and larger organizations need to understand that a full-time, dedicated administrator for the system is usually a necessity, not just a nice-to-have.
Building a job description
Take a look across the web at job descriptions for “Digital Asset Manager” or “Digital Asset Librarian” and you will see many top companies, including Fortune 500s, advertising for a dedicated and full-time position. Once you have that proof, you can start looking at the potential roles and responsibilities for a DAM Manager and estimating the time and resources necessary to fulfill those obligations.
There are some fantastic (and free) resources available online to get started. One of those is through job boards. You can find many listings on various popular job sites like Indeed or LinkedIn, but there is also a DAM-specific hiring board online, the Digital Assetmanagement News job board. Taking a look at what other companies include in their DAM role may inspire your organization’s own job description. There will be specific needs for your organization as well as your industry, but you can glean responsibility standards and core functions from any innovative company you respect.
What makes an awesome DAM champion?
Once you’ve allocated the budget for the role, posted it on various job boards, and compiled your list of questions to ask them, it's time to select the right candidate from this accomplished pool. There are several “soft skills” that you are looking for in this person, as well as some shared traits that all DAM Champions and digital asset managers should have. These people are:
• Excited for change management
• Intensely curious and want to know how people and things work
• Engineers in the sense that they like to build things
• Translators between IT and business managers
• Agile. They pick up on new technologies very quickly
• Friendly in the sense that they are customers themselves and know how to treat others who may need their help
• Open, approachable, team players! These people know they need the team behind them and can’t do it all by themselves
• Knowledge-sharers not knowledge-hoarders
• Lifelong learners
• Knowledgeable about your organization and business processes or willing to put forth a great amount of effort to get up to speed very quickly
The right DAM champion for your project could already be working at your organization, or could be out there as your next great hire. In either case, the key is zeroing in on the core responsibilities for the technology and for the business, and then finding the right personality that also exhibits all those traits you seek.
That is the first step in knowing your DAM project will succeed. Once you have your captain, it’s time to find your crew.
Are you hiring for a Digital Asset Management position? Download our full guide to receive the rest of the resource kit:
- Part 2: How to round out your executive DAM support team
- Part 3: 15 critical thinking questions to ask when interviewing your DAM champion
- Part 4: Digital Asset Manager job description template