Before you start setting up your PIM, you should consider defining a few basics: measurable goals, an execution plan, possible challenges, and a realistic timeline.
We suggest you define 3 to 5 main goals you want to accomplish and setting up a way to quantify and measure goal achievement over time.
- Goal Number #1 => We want to reduce the time it takes on average to find product information from 15 minutes to 1 minute.
- Goal Number #2 => We want to reduce the average time to Market from 3 weeks to 1 week.
- Goal Number #3 => We want you to be selling in 5 new Marketplaces in the next 3 months.
By doing this, you will be able to determine the key features you will need to achieve your goals and avoid analysis paralysis when it comes to learning all of the PIM features.
This will also help you decide which department or person should take the lead on the PIM project to ensure that whoever will be managing the PIM is invested in the project's success.
Most importantly, setting measurable goals will help you look back and assess the progress you have made and how successful you have been.
Once you have defined measurable goals, you will need to work on a plan to get each goal accomplished.
Try answering the following questions:
- Who is going to lead this project?
- Who else will help that project manager with the workload?
- Where are we going to get the initial product data from?
- Do we need to migrate all of our data or just some of it in order to get the ball rolling?
- Where are our images and media files located?
- Who is going to help set up connections to other systems?
- Who will have access to the PIM once implemented?
- Who will need training and at what level?
These and other questions will surely arise once you start to think of the project as a reality.
You will want to plan carefully to make sure everything is smooth sailing and not a "perfect storm." And to avoid storms, you think about potential challenges and how you'll deal with each.
Not matter how small a project is, challenges exist. Identify your challenges in advance to make sure you have enough knowledge, resources, and help to solve them. There is nothing worse than an unexpected roadblock that could have been planned for and avoided.
Try thinking about the following:
- How long will it take us to gather all of the initial product data?
- Do we have a consistent naming convention for files that include a SKU or a unique identifier?
- How are we going to enrich product data? (descriptions, media, etc.)
- Do we have internal resources for API connections to the systems we use?
- Do we know what information each Marketplace requires?
Once you have identified the main challenges you'll need to overcome, you can plan ahead to make sure you get the exact help you'll need.
Great, now that you have identified your goals, planned accordingly and thought about challenges, it's time to set a timeline. Here are some tips:
- Try to be realistic: this will be a big project and you'll need at least 6 weeks to implement it.
- Add some buffer: things will pop up along the way so make sure you add some buffer time to finish each step without rushing.
- Fight company procrastination/inertia: the best time to set up a PIM was a year ago and the second best time is today! Don't let the "status quo" eternally postpone this project.
You are not alone
Let us work with you during this process. We have a lot of experience and have worked with many different companies and we are sure that we can bring helpful insights and ideas to the table.