How to Easily Generate Audit Trails with a PIM

As regulatory requirements become increasingly complex, you’re likely looking for easier ways to generate audit trails for your organization. It might be helpful to learn that many businesses are using Product Information Management (PIM) systems to track and report changes made to their product data. Let’s look at how a PIM can simplify the process of generating audit trails and help you remain compliant with changing regulations.

1. What is a PIM?

A PIM system manages product data from a central hub. As a result, companies can streamline creating, managing, and distributing product-related information across multiple channels. PIMs manage the following types of data:

  • Basic product information such as SKUs, product codes and names, stock data, etc.
  • Technical specifications such as dimensions, parts, and accessories
  • Attributes like size and color
  • Shipping information
  • Product relationships or kits and bundles
  • Marketing data such as enriched product descriptions for various channels and buyer personas
  • Customer reviews
  • SEO information
  • Digital assets, including high-quality images, product videos, 360 and 3D views
  • PDF documents such as manuals, sizing charts, etc.
  • Augmented reality and virtual reality
  • Localized data, such as translated descriptions and currencies

As a single source of truth, PIMs make managing product information more reliable and improve efficiency through advanced automation and AI capabilities.

2. Generating audit trails made easy with a PIM

An audit trail traces changes back to their source. If you need to verify transactions, an audit trail is the easiest way to do this. A PIM records every change made to your company’s product information and stores it in a central database. As a result, you can easily monitor access and activity based on who has access to what information, when changes were made, and who made them.

By tracking these changes, you have greater control over your product data and improve transparency and accountability across all departments and team members. In other words, your audit trails provide the what, who, and when of product activity ready for review when you need it.

Some examples of the types of audits you can run include: This list can be made more accurate with further input

  • Data sets
  • Specific queries and entities
  • User IDs
  • Specific time-frames based on start and end dates
  • Product types or specific products
  • Customer activity
  • Edits and updates
  • Digital assets
  • Product descriptions
  • Delivery and fulfillment
  • Pricing
  • Updates and changes

The search results provide easy-to-read audit trails that define the sequence of activity, dates, user IDs, and more.

3. The benefits of generating audit trails with a PIM

With a PIM system featuring an integrated audit trail, you can ensure accuracy in all aspects of your business operations. You have a built-in investigative tool enabling you to evaluate your processes to ensure they fulfill all requirements to remain compliant. For example, you can include compliance guidelines in product criteria throughout the product life cycle, enabling you to analyze situations and compare your objectives to your achievements. Your organization can also use audit trials to save time and resources when errors or audits occur. The benefits of PIM audit trails include:

Increasing Visibility

Today, business operations are all about complete visibility, especially when considering the entire lifecycle of your products. PIM audit trails track activity from creation to distribution, so you are primed to identify weak spots in your processes. As a result, you become more and more efficient through ongoing procedural improvements.  For example, you can run audit trails to discover common points of collaboration so you understand the best places to trigger approvals in your process.

Remaining Compliant

Your team can use detailed audit trails to improve compliance with industry regulations. You also have trails that demonstrate compliance for standards requiring full transparency in managing and storing customer data securely.

Elevating Customer Service

Your PIM simplifies problem administration by tracing the sequence of actions in a purchase, sale, customer complaint, or goods delivery. Customer service teams become extremely responsive and can answer customer questions, identify where issues occurred, and resolve issues quickly.

Empowering Team Performance

Your audit trails offer insights into problem areas for your workforce. You can identify where errors occur, so you can find teaching opportunities with specific departments or individuals.

PIM audit trail capabilities monitor and track all product-related activity across all departments from start to finish. As a result, you can easily create activity reports, improve visibility throughout the supply chain, and find opportunities for ongoing process improvements.