14 min

Written by Dominic Vieregge

Implementing DAM software: Your guide for maximum project success

Are you eyeballing the purchase of a DAM solution and are unsure what you need to look out for before and during the DAM implementation in order to avoid additional effort and unnecessary costs? In this guide, we provide you with lessons learned from more than 100 customer projects to make your DAM project a complete success right from the start!

The DAM project was successfully completed

Table of Contents

What is DAM software?

What is DAM software?

„DAM“ steht für Digital The term “DAM” is the abbreviation for Digital Asset Management. These are intelligent software solutions for the efficient management and organisation of digital content. As a rule, leading DAM solutions offer file management independent of file formats.

Simply put, this means: You can save, manage and play any file. In addition, a DAM solution generates thumbnails for users, which makes it possible to display even special 3D file formats, even if DAM users do not have the corresponding licenses.

Kinds of digitals assets

Advantages of DAM Software

The main benefit of DAM software is to improve your own organization, as well as to significantly increase your efficiency and productivity. Most DAM users specifically report the following benefits:

  • Improving data quality
  • Fewer correction loops
  • No more duplicate files
  • Significant time savings of up to 30 %
  • Better collaboration with external parties (customers, suppliers, agencies)
  • Cost savings by saving resources
  • Higher data security / GDPR compliance
  • Faster launch of new products
  • Reduction of susceptibility to errors
  • Improving internal co-operation

Who is DAM software suitable for?

Many people believe that DAM systems are something that only makes sense to use in large companies and corporations. Most DAM solutions offer a wide range of functions that are also ideal for SMEs.

Typical user groups typically include photographers, marketers, product managers and sales representatives. Another advantage is that a DAM significantly simplifies collaboration with customers, suppliers or agencies.

For this purpose, leading solutions offer customizable user management, whereby external access is granted, but read and write rights can be regulated at the same time. Unauthorized access to sensitive content is thus prevented.

Typical users of a DAM systems

Which industries use DAM systems?

In principle, a DAM is useful for companies of all industries, where there is an increased amount of digital content, as well as design or product data.

However, over the years, a number of industries have emerged that increasingly rely on the use of DAM software. These include:

How much does DAM software cost?

Costs of a DAM

The cost of a simple standard solution usually starts at a few hundred euros per month. But even here it is not possible to provide a one-size-fits-all answer, as the final costs are usually directly related to the scope of your requirements.

Depending on the manufacturer, there are several additional add-ons that you can use to expand the standard scope of your solution. For example, to enable data exchange between the DAM and third-party systems such as website, shop or ERP system. In addition, depending on the needs and project, service packages for consulting, training or the development of own system components outside the standard scope.

What should my budget be for a DAM project?

For simple tasks such as managing and finding files, you should budget around €10,000 for the first year. If your requirements are more complex and your goal is to represent different types of workflows, a DAM budget starting at around €20,000 per year is recommended.

What are the pitfalls of introducing DAM?

The introduction of DAM software has some pitfalls. We have listed for you what they are and what you should pay attention to when introducing a new DAM solution in your company:

Wrong people involved

Choosing the right team is crucial. Without cross-departmental expertise, you risk missing important requirements. Therefore, try to involve one key user per department in order to cover a holistic requirement profile.

Too small budget

Not infrequently it happens that savings are made in the wrong places and e.g. supposedly unimportant features are omitted, which in turn can significantly reduce the half-life of your DAM software, because it lacks usability in practice!

Wrong scheduling

Good Ding wants some time. Incorrect scheduling can lead to deadlines, delays, and frustration for your project team. Divide the project into meaningful, measurable phases and calculate enough time as well as possible buffers.

Project implementation in 3 phases

Consider the files of all the departments involved. The initial acquisition and tagging of old data is crucial for a smooth transition to the day-to-day business with DAM.

It is recommended that a DAM system is introduced in three phases

Altdatenübernahme beachten

Andere Abteilung, andere Dateien: Berücksichtige bei der Planung die verwendeten Dateiformate aller Abteilungen, die das DAM-System nutzen werden. Die initiale Übernahme und Indizierung der Altdaten ist entscheidend für einen reibungslosen Übergang in den DAM-Alltag.

The most important to-do’s before the start of the project

Before you start the DAM project and start the search for suitable suppliers, it is advisable to take some precautions. This minimizes the chance that something unforeseen will happen and your project will be delayed.

Think of all the important to-dos when introducing software

Interdisciplinary project team

To make your DAM software truly a holistic solution, you should assemble an interdisciplinary team of experts from different disciplines. In this way, you gain a better insight into the real needs and requirements that currently prevail in the company.

Collect requirements

There is no clear solution without clear requirements. Therefore, create a specification to define all the needs of your company precisely and to formulate them comprehensibly. This helps your team, as well as the DAM provider.

Obtaining budget approval

Clarify financial issues in advance. The budget release before the project starts is a decisive step to keep the selection processes as short as possible. Not infrequently, it is only after months of the selection process that the financial resources in the company are insufficient.

Outlining workflows

Visualize your workflows. Outlining workflows helps to keep an overview and avoid misunderstandings. Likewise, it helps you develop more clarity about which features are nice-to-have or a must-have.

How the DAM introduction succeeds

After the go-live of your new DAM solution, there are some measures that should be done to be able to design the system landscape sustainably. It is advisable to start these tasks after a successful transfer of old data.

Clean up duplicates

Cleaning up duplicates is the first step towards efficient use of DAM software. Features such as AI search in 4ALLPORTAL automatically detect duplicate records, so you can remove them with a few mouse clicks.

When introducing a DAM, you should clean up all duplicates

Tag all assets

Keywords are the key to easy findability. Thanks to an individual metadata concept and automatic tagging features, each uploaded file receives keywords to make it searchable for every party in the company.

Maintain release status

Just hold it. An easy-to-understand share status helps you and your colleagues know if a file can be used or not. Especially for “open” files, such as the Adobe Suite, access control at the file level is important to prevent unauthorized editing or deletion.

Maintaining versions / variants

The development does not stand still. Maintain all versions and variants of your files to stay up-to-date and keep track of them. Opaque naming conventions via pre- or suffix usually only lead to confusion of users.

Upload local data

To prevent file loss and re-creation of files, all locally stored content should also be transferred to the DAM. This is the only way to make all the files in the company visible and get the chaos under control.

Getting feedback

A DAM system should be dynamic, constantly evolving and adaptable to user needs. Regular feedback from departments is recommended in order to implement improvements in the DAM.

Implementing workflows

To further increase cross-departmental productivity, your workflows should (if possible) be mapped directly to the DAM. This applies, for example, to content releases, correction loops or the joint work on open files with external agencies or service providers.

Erfolgreiche Zusammenarbeit bei der Einführung eines DAM-Systems


As you can see, the successful implementation of a DAM solution is no witchcraft. However, there are some measures, before and during vendor selection, that can significantly influence the process — both positively and negatively.

If you are unsure whether you have really thought of everything, feel free to contact us and get one of our experienced consultants on board to check your requirements and wishes.

Are you ready for the next step?

Then please book a non-binding appointment for a short interview with someone from our team. There you can ask all your questions about our DAM solution, possible costs or the project progress to gain more clarity.

Häufig gestellte Fragen (FAQs)

Die Kosten variieren. Es hängt von den Anforderungen deines Unternehmens ab. Eine genaue Kostenschätzung erhältst du nach einer detaillierten Bedarfsanalyse in einem Anforderungsgespräch. Optional kannst du auch direkt unsere allgemeine Preisliste mit „Preisen ab“ anfordern.

Lastenheft und feste Deadlines sind nicht immer ideal für die Einführung einer DAM-Software, da sie zu starren Vorgaben führen können. Dies kann Anpassungen an sich ändernde Anforderungen erschweren, Innovationen behindern und unter Zeitdruck zu Qualitätsverlusten führen. Ein agiler Ansatz bietet mehr Flexibilität und ermöglicht eine kontinuierliche Anpassung, was oft zu einem effizienteren und erfolgreichen Implementierungsprozess führt. Unsere Berater helfen euch bei der Umsetzung eines agilen Projektplans.

Die Dauer variiert je nach Größe und Komplexität des Projekts. In der Regel kannst du mit mehreren Monaten rechnen. Die reine Software-Implementierung in deinem Unternehmen ist erfahrungsgemäß innerhalb weniger Wochen realisierbar.

Allerdings benötigen die Test- und Evaluierungsphasen im Rahmen des Anbietervergleichs, sowie eventuelle interne Workshops, einige Zeit.

Das Team trägt maßgeblich zum Erfolg bei. Nur mit einer abteilungsübergreifenden Kompetenz kannst du alle Anforderungen abdecken und das gesamte Potenzial deiner DAM-Lösung nutzen.

Die Übernahme eurer abteilungsinternen oder sogar abteilungsübergreifenden Dateien bildet die Grundlage für einen erfolgreichen Projektstart. Genauso Altdaten wertvolle Informationen und Dateien, die auch zukünftig benötigt werden.

Entsprechend stellst du im Rahmen einer Altdatenübernahme sicher, dass nichts verloren geht und die Kontinuität gewahrt bleibt.

Regelmäßiges Feedback ist entscheidend. Idealerweise solltest du nach jeder Projektphase und in regelmäßigen Abständen Feedback einholen, um kontinuierliche Verbesserungen vorzunehmen.

Das gilt sowohl für die interne DAM-Planung, als auch für die Erstellung von Lastenheften und Anforderungskatalogen, die für die Auswahl der richtigen Lösung entscheidend sind.

Entdecke die Welt der DAM-Software und gestalte deine digitale Zukunft erfolgreich!