M+E Connections

M&E Journal: From DAM to Digital Backbone

By Steve Cronan, Founder and CEO, 5th Kind

As the world of Digital Asset Management continues to evolve and mature, the question for asset managers isn’t should I invest in a DAM tool of some kind, but rather how do I find the right tool or suite of tools that can be a digital backbone for my organization.

With a host of point-to-point offerings, the task of navigating and curating the most cost effective, secure and easy to use tool can be time consuming and painstaking. Like any organizational or workflow tool, users want to know a DAM application works; that it is simple to use and gets the job done. Asset managers have enough on their plates working with senior information technology leadership to ensure digital tools deliver the right functionality for the task at hand.

Their mandate requires:

* More functionality, higher ROI, with fewer partners to manage.

* Wide range of functionality on demand that can be filtered for a more streamlined user experience.

* Digital supply chain providers who will partner with best of breed solutions and provide a comprehensive, secure digital back-bone vs a point solution that must be woven together piece by piece.

* Comprehensive, cost efficient, connected solutions that will help simplify the procurement process and speed up time to deployment.

DAM new collaboration

The concept of securely ingesting, managing, sharing and archiving content has taken hold across the entertainment and enterprise spaces. But the expectation of rapid, secure access to any file on any device at any time can be easier said than done. This expectation is prompting a new era of collaboration – a collaboration of collaborative workflow tools, plug-ins, applications and supporting services to create a best of breed end-to-end digital backbone solution.

This “behind the scenes” collaboration should deliver a higher performing end product, and save valuable time for asset managers. A prime example is 5th Kind’s CORE collaborative DAM integration with file transfer accelerator Aspera and Sohonet’s low latency high speed network offering a streamlined and technology-transparent solution for clients.

It also offers a turnkey integrated infrastructure that sits at the heart of a high-speed network connecting most of the major studios and partners, with best of breed file acceleration to outside vendors. With high-speed storage providers like Open Drives, clients have very high performance file transport and storage.

A DAM bright future for clients

So, if all the elements of a comprehensive digital ecosystem align, what does it look like?

* Rapid & fluid asset ingestion with minimal effort

* Seamless workflow that is simple to use and enable fluid communication across departments

* Airtight security automated based on metadata to service multiple workflows

* Anytime, anywhere access with designated access controls

* Hyper collaboration: Integration of functionality across multiple teams

* An integrated hub with an API supporting integration of 3rd party solutions

This seamless and connected digital ecosystem will be orchestrated by forward looking digital providers like 5th Kind, which provide a visual brain for indexing, searching, viewing, approving, distributing and archiving using all these technologies.

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Steve Cronan has been involved in feature film production since 2001 when he transitioned from Web and systems engineering to become the Digital Asset Manager for The Matrix sequels. Cronan continues to develop new standards to automate asset and metadata processes for feature film production. In 2012 Steve was awarded the 2012 DAMMY of the year.