• March 2, 2003
  • By David Myron, Editorial Director, CRM and Speech Technology magazines and SmartCustomerService.com

One File Fits All

One File Fits All When the modus operandi is to drive down costs and increase profitability, who would think of managing image files as a solution? Andy Aronson does. Aronson, project manager and producer at National Semiconductor Corp., has been thinking about media filing systems since he first started at National Semiconductor eight years ago. Getting his managers to support him, however, was an uphill battle; one that lasted roughly five years, Aronson says. "A lot of people at the executive level don't understand the value this package can bring. They don't understand the workflow or about how difficult it can be to find collateral or what it can do for productivity," he says. The $1.5 billion company has more than 10,000 employees worldwide, all pooling their efforts to create and sell chips for a wide range of technology devices, including mobile and cordless phones, DVD players, wireless local area networks, and more. With so many products, the company had a hard time keeping up with marketing materials and documents such as product shots, Microsoft PowerPoint presentations, employee head shots, and documents like annual reports. "We had a fair amount of lost original images. We were constantly looking for images all over the world and sometimes it would take us days to track them down," Aronson recalls. "Your bottom line gets affected as well as the man hours required to look for the images and files." Fortunately, after five years of prodding, Aronson got his wish: the go-ahead to look for a better filing system. At this time, which was three years ago, Aronson had learned enough about what was out there. "When I was looking there were well over 200 players in this field." The one diamond in the rough for Aronson was MediaBin, which has a product by the same name. "MediaBin offered a lot of potential and was open with its bug lists so we knew what we were getting ourselves into," Aronson says. Since signing up with MediaBin's first release three years ago, National has upgraded along the way and is currently using MediaBin 2.4, which can store various types of files, including digital video files, MPEGs, AVIs, Real Video, and Windows Media files. Additionally, Aronson boasts of MediaBin's ability to convert files on-the-fly, so only one original file needs to be saved on the company's server. Employees can click on the file and download it in the desired format. Aronson sees additional opportunities for executives to share large presentation files using MediaBin, as well as additional opportunities for engineers to share large CAD files.
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