Making the complex simple

By Craig Mulley

7th November 2018


“I see dead people”

The now famous quote spoken by a young Haley Joel Osment in Sixth Sense. This has now become parodied in many ways but I use this as an example of what we experience every day.

We see businesses using outdated ways of managing complex sets of product data, creating bottlenecks of knowledge within their business…

“We see dead data”

Let me give you an example

ACME Ltd sells a huge range of products consisting of 22 families, each family has 50-100 products and most products have variations, let’s say 3.

This creates a scenario of 22 x 100 x 3 = 3300-6600 products

ACME Ltd have always used excel to manage their product data, the excel sheet is on a server and everyone has access to it, all 6600 rows of data!!!

Now that Excel sheet sits isolated from the companies website, agency, application and more importantly their customers. This data is then distributed via emails (out of date the minute its sent) or shared online to design agencies or in house staff to pick through to manually create 100’s data-sheets (or at best a data-merge in to a InDesign template).

There was nothing wrong with that 19 years ago as there was very little cost effective alternatives, but this is 2018 not 1999 (the year Sixth Sense came out).

The alternative right way

Centralisation and channels are the key is an effective product management solution.

Imagine being able to take this historic product data, importing it to a cloud based interface with the ability to link product data, images, associated documents and much more to a website, data sheet templates, applications, sales channels such as amazon… in fact anything via an API.

We have helped our clients with product management ranging from 100’s to tens of 1000’s of products, removing the data bottleneck.

One of our clients were manually producing 1000’s of data sheets each year in the method I outlined previously, this took up much of the time of an in-house designer who spent their working week cutting and pasting values from an Excel sheet and not focusing on the design and branding aspects of the business.

We took the existing data, imported into our PIM and linked the now cloud based data to a data sheet template, this provided the sales and marketing team the ability to update product data individually or in bulk online and and centralised. This data would then sync with all channels and produce 1000’s of PDF data sheets which would in turn upload to dropbox for in-house company access and to the website for customer reference. This saved countless man-hours every month and refocused the design department on the business.

If you think we can help you or your client make their data live please give us a call 01279 732436 to have a chat or email me – [email protected]