In today’s digital age, managing and organizing vast amounts of digital assets can be a daunting task. From images and videos to documents, AEC firms face the challenge of effectively storing, organizing and sharing these valuable assets.
That’s where Digital Asset Management (DAM) systems come into play, providing a centralized hub to manage and distribute digital assets efficiently.
However, the power of DAM systems is more robust when integrated with other tools and platforms that you already use daily.
At OpenAsset, we understand the importance of meeting your AEC project needs, which is why we want to help you find the right DAM integration tools and platforms for your business. By connecting DAM systems with popular software and applications, businesses can streamline their workflows, enhance collaboration, and unlock new levels of productivity.
This blog post will explore the eight most popular DAM integrations to help you choose the right ones for your business.
Most Popular DAM Integrations
The primary advantage of implementing a project-based DAM lies in its ability to seamlessly integrate with the existing technology that AEC marketers rely on every day. These solutions are purposefully designed to effortlessly integrate with ERP, CRM, and knowledge-sharing systems such as InDesign and Unanet. This integration links your image assets to the project information and profiles in your other systems and vice versa. As a result, it leads to more robust and useful systems. Here are the eight most popular integrations to get the most out of your DAM system.
1. Adobe Products
Adobe provides image editing and creation software, such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. Each program serves a distinct purpose. Photoshop focuses on photo editing, allowing users to precisely enhance and manipulate images. Illustrator is dedicated to drawing and illustration, enabling the creation of scalable graphics and logos. InDesign, on the other hand, specializes in designing layouts for combining images and text. Let’s take a look at each.
InDesign is a document creation and design software tool. What distinguishes InDesign from Photoshop and Illustrator is its emphasis on text and typography excellence.
Among the most popular tools employed by AEC firms, InDesign holds a prominent position, particularly favored by architecture firms. InDesign is typically reserved for the marketing team, resulting in limited collaboration opportunities among various departments. Consequently, there arises a necessity for an additional tool to cater to the requirements of other teams.
Unlike the other two programs, InDesign is not primarily for creating images from scratch. Instead, it is a comprehensive layout design software that excels in managing extensive pages and textual content. InDesign empowers users with full control over the design and presentation of their projects, allowing for precise customization and arrangement. Focusing on layout and content management, InDesign is a powerful tool for creating visually appealing and well-structured documents.
InDesign is ideal for creating layouts that use any combination of text, images, and drawings. Its versatility is perfect for crafting documents, such as resumes, AEC proposal templates, and any content that demands flexible design capabilities. By integrating InDesign with a DAM system, creating content can be done faster than ever with custom InDesign brand templates.
Illustrator and Photoshop
Adobe Illustrator is a vector graphics editor tool, while Adobe Photoshop is the industry-standard photo editing software.
Illustrator works as a drawing tool and ensures the image quality remains unaltered regardless of the file’s size adjustment. It guarantees that lines remain sharp and well-defined and facilitates printing images in high resolution without compromising their clarity.
Illustrator is to create:
- Company logos
Photoshop primarily focuses on the editing and transformation of photographs. However, it also focuses on the creation of raster images that consist of a pixel grid. The projects crafted in Photoshop are intricately tied to the original file’s resolution, which imposes limitations on the resizing of images beyond the constraints of the initial dimensions.
Photoshop is used to:
- Crop photos
- Adjust photo composition
- Correct lighting
- Make any subject look its absolute best
Some AEC firms may work in Illustrator to create one-pagers, although it’s uncommon because Illustrator is typically used for building website mockups and similar projects. However, Illustrator and Photoshop are not as robust as InDesign, especially for the AEC industries, as they were not created with documents in mind.
Although these tools are great for editing and producing high-quality images to support visual elements, they were not built for text or anything written. However, design teams frequently collaborate on complex projects in Adobe Illustrator and PhotoShop.
2. Microsoft Products
Compared to other document creation tools, Microsoft Office offers limited functionality to assist you in completing tasks. While you can create quick layouts, this tool cannot handle more intricate and demanding requirements. However, Word and PowerPoint are still among the most popular tools for AEC firms because they’re great for putting together text-heavy documents or quick, stunning presentations.
Microsoft Word is a document creation tool that allows you to elevate your writing, create beautiful documents, and collaborate with others, regardless of location.
Microsoft Word tends to be used less than PowerPoint as it is less image-friendly. However, Word is efficient for creating text-heavy documents. This includes resumes and SF330s as they are less likely to require an image.
AEC firms can leverage Word for resumes because it can be easy to format in Word. However, they’ll still need another tool to finalize any design elements. For SF 330s, you may need to create them in Word because some government agencies only accept Word documents as a submission. They don’t accept other formats, such as PDFs or PowerPoint; they only accept Word documents.
Additionally, some presentations and proposals may be data-driven, which you can create in Word or PowerPoint. For these designs, most of the time there’s no need for complex design capabilities.
Microsoft PowerPoint is another document creation and design tool popular among DAM integrations. Microsoft PowerPoint allows you to design polished slideshow presentations and intricate pitch decks, equipping you with a robust presentation maker to effectively share your story. As an AEC professional, you can enhance your presentations in PowerPoint by utilizing pre-made, professionally-designed templates.
PowerPoint and Word tend to be useful more often at engineering and construction firms. This is because, some firms have project managers generating their proposals, and sometimes they just need to be able to pull together a quick presentation. Therefore, they don’t require the design capabilities other tools offer.
By integrating your DAM with Word and PowerPoint, you can create top-notch, branded deliverables in no time by doing nothing more than dragging and dropping images into templates and presentations.
Templafy, as the name implies, serves as a templating tool. Its purpose is to assist businesses in constructing their templates for essential documents such as proposals, SOWs, site assessments, and more critical documents. With Templafy, organizations can accelerate the template creation process by up to 30%. All of this while ensuring adherence to brand guidelines and regulatory compliance.
As a brand management document automation tool, Templafy strives to foster consistency and brand coherence across diverse presentations. When multiple individuals are creating various documents, it becomes crucial to maintain control over the presentations to ensure alignment with the organization’s brand identity.
Templafy empowers AEC professionals to achieve this control, enforcing brand consistency and preserving a unified visual identity throughout their document creation process.
Integrating your DAM with Templafy will allow you to simply enter a search term, and the Templafy connector will then display relevant images from your DAM library. Once you’ve found the image, you can add it directly to your document in PowerPoint or Word without having to resize or make it fit.
WordPress is a popular content management system (CMS) that allows users to host and build websites easily. It provides a user-friendly interface and a range of customizable themes and plugins, making it accessible for individuals with little to no coding experience. The WordPress plugin architecture and template system, lets you customize any website to fit your business.
WordPress offers robust features for creating, editing, and organizing content, including text, images, videos, and other media. With its flexibility and extensive community support, WordPress has become one of the most popular platforms for website creation and management. With the right template and plugins, AEC professionals can build a beautiful and functional website that showcases their projects and services to the world.
Integrating your DAM system with a CMS, like WordPress, offers immense value by providing a centralized location within the CMS where you can effortlessly modify and add your web pages. This seamless integration allows team members to access assets directly from the DAM for digital publication and incorporate them into websites and blogs without additional steps like downloading and re-uploading. By eliminating these extra steps, the integration streamlines the workflow and enhances efficiency in managing and publishing digital assets across your online platforms.
Sitecore is a powerful and comprehensive digital experience management platform that allows organizations to create and deliver personalized and engaging digital experiences across multiple channels. It is a content management system (CMS) with advanced web content management, customer experience management, e-commerce, and marketing automation capabilities.
The platform also empowers marketers and decision-makers with automation and data analytics that goes beyond a regular CMS. Its integrated marketing automation features enable marketers to automate campaigns, track customer interactions, and gain insights into visitor behavior. Sitecore’s analytics and reporting tools provide valuable data and insights. As a result, you can measure the effectiveness of digital marketing efforts and optimize content and user experiences.
Integrating your DAM system with Sitecore establishes a seamless connection that ensures automatic updates of website images. This two-way integration enables a reciprocal flow of images between your DAM and CMS. Not only can you effortlessly upload new images from your DAM to your CMS as they are added, but you can also automatically upload images from your CMS to your DAM. This integration streamlines the managing and synchronizing of images, ensuring that both platforms stay updated with the latest visual content.
Deltek is a project-based Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Enterprise resource planning (ERP). The software helps you streamline project processes with one ERP cloud solution for architecture and engineering firms for:
- Project management
- Human capital management
Deltek Vision is a comprehensive enterprise resource planning (ERP) software solution specifically designed for professional services firms. It’s a project-based ERP system offering various integrated modules and features to help businesses streamline their operations, manage projects efficiently, and optimize financial performance.
This software is commonly of use to professional services firms, such as architectural, engineering, and consulting companies. The goal is to enhance project visibility, optimize resource allocation, improve financial control, and drive overall business performance. It enables organizations to effectively manage their projects, resources, and finances in a unified system, promoting efficiency, collaboration, and profitability.
With this integration, you can easily extract project details and link them to your DAM system, ensuring that essential information such as client, budget, location, project type, project team, and services rendered are associated with your project images.
With the integration of a DAM solution, you can merge your image library with Deltek Vision. This eliminates the need for manual copying and pasting of image information from Vision into your DAM.
Moreover, by utilizing your DAM for content search instead of relying solely on Deltek Vision, you can leverage the robust search functionality offered by DAM systems. This approach combines the wealth of information in Deltek Vision with the powerful search capabilities of a DAM system, providing you with a powerful combination.
Deltek Vantagepoint is a comprehensive enterprise resource planning (ERP) software solution. It’s specifically designed for project-based businesses, such as architecture, engineering, and consulting firms. It’s an upgraded version of Deltek Vision, offering enhanced features and capabilities to meet the evolving needs of professional services firms.
Architecture and engineering firms prefer Deltek solutions for their ability to enhance profitability and productivity through effective project management. This ensures projects are delivered on time, on track, and within budget. AEC firms use Deltek Vision and Vantagepoint as the single source of truth for their firm’s project and employee data.
7. Unanet CRM by Cosential
Unanet is a project-based Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software that helps AEC firms elevate their business. It is a cloud-based software platform offering a comprehensive suite of solutions to support project-based businesses. Unanet enables intuitive collaboration for architects with modern, project-based solutions intentionally designed for real-time, interactive insights, data-driven decisions, and sustainable growth.
By implementing a CRM system, such as Unanet, with a DAM solution, the time teams require to share content with customers and prospects is greatly reduced. This integration enables teams to securely access the most current assets directly within the CRM interface. This eliminates the need to switch between multiple platforms. As a result, it establishes a single source of truth for your team, ensuring that everyone is working with the latest approved materials and minimizing the risk of unintentionally using outdated or unauthorized content.
Procore is a leading Construction Project Management (CPM) platform designed to streamline and optimize construction project workflows. It is a cloud-based software solution offering comprehensive tools and features to support project teams throughout the construction lifecycle. Procore is an all-in-one construction management software helping companies finish high-quality projects—safely, on time, and within budget.
Procore is the only software platform in the construction industry that establishes a centralized collaboration hub. It’s great for connecting owners, general contractors, specialty contractors, and other project collaborators throughout the project lifecycle.
With the Procore integration, you can enable your Construction Management and Marketing teams to share images fluently and craft winning proposals in a shorter amount of time.
Architects use Procore to perform the following critical tasks:
- Upload, view, and markup drawings
- View meetings
- Respond to RFIs
- View punch list items
Engineers use Procore to perform the following critical tasks:
- Respond to RFIs
- Review submittals
Combining a CPM, like Procore, with your DAM enables seamless image uploads from your CPM to your DAM. Within the DAM, these images can be easily tagged with searchable keywords, allowing for effortless search and retrieval, and can be shared across your entire organization. This integration empowers marketing teams with on-demand access to images, allowing them to showcase project stories and attract more business.
Get the Most Out of Your DAM
By incorporating integrations into your workflow, you can empower your team with the essential features they require: enhanced usability, convenience, collaborative capabilities, strengthened security, and consistent operations. These integrations optimize your workflows and boost productivity, enabling your marketing team to maintain complete control over your brand and the distribution of your valuable digital assets.
Why not make your DAM more powerful by integrating it with the right suite of tools? This will help improve your workflow and help your team work smarter. To start, check out the tools and platforms OpenAsset integrates with. You can also get in touch to evaluate your solution and learn more about DAM integrations.