Most companies find product information management to be a fairly manageable task on a small scale. However, once your company starts growing or once the data becomes more complex, you may wonder if there is a faster and better way than manually updating data on a multitude of products in Excel spreadsheets, product data sheets, PowerPoint presentations, and InDesign files.
In this article, you'll learn to discover three important signs that it is time for your company to change the way it manages product information.
1: Your system can’t keep up with product data needs
When more and more products need manual updating, you risk both making mistakes and forgetting something in the process. It starts with small errors like missing information or incomplete product descriptions. Or maybe data is not updated quickly enough, and product displays are no longer aligned with your updated portfolio.
You might also find that you have several spreadsheets that list product information, but they are all different and you aren’t sure which information is accurate. The errors are just big enough to make a salesperson double check or cause a few customers to have to choose different versions of the items they ordered.
These might seem like little omissions and frustrating inconveniences, but they are actually signs that your system can’t keep up with your product data needs.
2: Late product catalogs lead to data inconsistency
Another sign that you need to change the way you manage product data is the timing of your catalogs and campaigns. Most often, projects get finished after their deadlines. You will find that finalizing projects becomes much more difficult as each individual go-to-market task experiences delays.
In many cases, there is no agreement on the correct product information. As a result, time is wasted across the organization, and tasks like design take longer because time is spent looking for product data and double-checking that the right version is being used.
When the same data is used across different departments in a company, say marketing and product development, the information needs to be standardized and synchronized. If not, it leads to data inconsistency and inefficiency.
3: Incorrect data makes it impossible to start a campaign
Finally, you might experience a loss of perspective and it becomes difficult to know where to start a task. You can’t create a campaign because you aren’t sure what the current line contains and you don't know the exact specs for each item.
Even compiling a product catalog seems daunting because you don’t have a way to know which set of information is correct, and what is outdated or wrong. That problem forces you to manually verify each product entry. It takes countless hours to do. The more people you have working on the project, the more challenging it is to manage. Eventually, you get stuck with the unenviable task of trying to find the best way to approach a task without the right technology for the job.
Does your company need a Product Information Management System?
If you have noticed any of these three signs, it’s time to look for a Product Information Management System that can keep up with current and future data requirements and act as a driver for further growth.
Answer 9 simple questions in our PIM test and get a clear indication of whether a PIM system is worth the investment for your company.