Why is DAM critical for heritage organisations and museums?

Perhaps more than any other industry, heritage organisations and museums must have a system in place to effectively manage their digital assets. Many heritage organisations now possess digitised versions of their archives which can be used for digital exhibitions or online sharing, which are great ways to get the most out of their collections. 

Even if you’re not using a DAM system to share your assets, they can enhance your work with heritage collections in many ways. Here are our top four:

1. Protection against lost or incomplete data.

When digital assets are stored in the wrong place, across multiple platforms, or in incomplete formats, it can be incredibly frustrating for your team and lead to wasted time and resources. By using a DAM platform to store and organise your digital assets you mitigate the risk of disappearing files and can direct any user towards a single repository. 

In a good DAM platform, all digital assets are backed-up in real-time as they’re uploaded into the system. Every single asset is then stored in at least three different physical locations, meaning customers can have confidence that their important data is being properly preserved.

2. An extra layer of security for your precious data.

Using a DAM platform also protects your digital assets from insecure storage and sharing methods, particularly important if you handle any sensitive data. Good DAM platforms (like Aetopia) include security features which protect your assets from unwanted interference; desirable features include watermarking, defined access periods, user permissions and tracking capabilities. 

Having complete control over who accesses assets, when, and how is an incredibly powerful tool for teams handling large amounts of important material.

3. The perfect tool for remote or hybrid organisations. 

We all know the importance of ensuring that staff have remote access to the systems and tools they need to remain productive outside of their normal working environment.

By introducing a cloud-based DAM system into your organisation, you’ll ensure archivists and curators have the ability to work on content and prepare visual displays when they don’t have physical access to their exhibits. Having a cloud-based system also protects assets from potential hazards like damp or fire. 

4. A facilitator for your archival efforts. 

The point of a DAM system is to make organisation easier, so you can be sure your platform is built upon information management best practices. That means whatever type of digital asset you have (document, image, video, and so on) will be supported, alongside their metadata. You can read more about using metadata within your DAM platform in our previous article, but the main benefits include making your assets:

  • Findable — When assets are logically and clearly tagged users can find what they want by making simple search queries. 
  • Accessible — Once someone finds the data they need, metadata indicates how they can be accessed, possibly including authentication.
  • Reusable — When a logical metadata scheme is in play, DAM users can understand how data is structured and replicate it across assets.

Does your heritage organisation need DAM?

The short answer? Yes it does! By implementing an adaptable DAM system, your museum or archive will be able to manage its digital assets more effectively;your colleagues can navigate your digital assets with ease and you can get maximum value out of your collection. DAM keeps assets safe, organised and actionable. If you’re exploring DAM for your heritage organisation or need some advice on how best to manage your digital assets, you can reach out to our team today.

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