How Cipla South Africa cured its content production problems

In large organizations, a common content workflow consists of emailing PDF, Word, or Excel files, annotating them, saving a copy on desktop and forwarding or sending it back via email. This system means a lack of tracking and version control, and a high risk of files vanishing.

One organization facing this common issue was the South African arm of global pharmaceutical company Cipla.

The organization creates, manages, and publishes a wide range of content, including case studies, medical forms, legal documentation, images, and barcodes. With a workflow like as the one above, it had a three-month turnaround time on average for a brochure and a two-week turnaround time on average for packaging files. Files and documents were easily lost in the content creation process.

Cipla is a pharmaceutical company operating in over 100 countries

Spotting an opportunity to cut down on lost time and improve speed to market, Cipla partnered with technology solutions provider APS, which recommended WoodWing’s Digital Asset Management (DAM) solution, Elvis to improve its content management and workflow. (Editor’s note: for a primer on the advantages digital asset management and how it is different to file storage check out this post: Marketers: Have file management problems? It’s time to ask for a DAM solution.)

There were several reasons for choosing Elvis:

  • It is easy and clean to install, and requires only a short onboarding time.
  • It made it possible to copy and iteratively improve its existing workflows.
  • It was possible integrate the programs that Cipla was already using on a daily basis.

Adding metadata for improved searchability

A huge advantage of having a DAM solution such as Elvis is the ability to search not only files names, but file content and metadata (these are descriptive tags applied to the file such as size, date of creation/editing, owner, usage rights, and so on). This was particularly important for Cipla, due to the complex metadata associated with pharmaceutical labelling. As an example, when looking for all medicines with the same active ingredient, the exact name of these medicines had to be inserted manually. Most likely, one or more relevant medicines would be overlooked. With Elvis, all medicines can be found by searching only on that one active ingredient by virtue of the taxonomy and metadata options.

We love Elvis DAM. Everyone who interacts with Elvis loves it. Internally we can’t do without it anymore and when we allow external agencies to work in Elvis for collaborations on projects, it takes them less than thirty minutes to learn how to freely operate the solution. The more the staff can do in Elvis, the happier they are.

Steven van Heerden, Manager Design & Digital at Cipla SA -

Results and benefits

200 employees are now working with WoodWing DAM directly or indirectly, and are seeing the following benefits:

  • The turnaround time for a brochure, from briefing to sign-off, has been reduced from months to days, and the approval process from two weeks to 24 hours.
  • Users are taking advantage of automatic version tracking, meaning every user has the right version and access to the right documents.
  • Based on Cipla’s calculation matrix, they are currently on a 98% saving in terms of production time and production costs.
All of our commercial production Standard Operational Procedures are currently under revision. The reason is that Elvis DAM has raised the standard and scope of work.

Steven van Heerden, Manager Design & Digital at Cipla SA

Read the full case study here.


About WoodWing
WoodWing Software helps brands, publishers, and agencies create, manage, and publish content across teams and publish across channels. We build solutions that are perfect for large teams to efficiently work together on creative processes, within systems that are easy to manage. Customers include Hearst, Forbes, Axel Springer, Coca Cola, and Yamaha.

To find out more, visit woodwing.com, or contact us.