Saturday, October 22, 2011

Dear digitization company, are you meeting the needs of potential clients?

Earlier this week, I spoke with someone who has overseen a rather large digitization program this year, which digitized a variety of materials.  The person said that they had not planned on building their own digitization facility for this program, but ended up having to.  They had thought that they would be able to find a company that could handle all of the work, including digitizing a variety of material types.  Unfortunately, companies that convert materials specialize in specific types of materials.  In addition, companies that do conversion may not create metadata or load items into the asset management software. However, that isn't what all organizations want.  Some organizations want to work with a company that can do it all and do it well. 

If you are a digitization vendor and someone came to you to do it all, could you?  Would you?  Or would you let a prime opportunity (and income) walk away? 

1 comment:

Tom Ringdahl said...

We’re a digitization vendor, and we believe we do offer a full range of services, not just for digitizing but also for microfilming, printing, and binding. We can digitize paper source material as small as index cards and as large as engineering drawings. We’ve digitized newspapers, photos, books (bound and disbound), atlases, maps, professional journals, magazines, art, catalogs, postcards and family history materials for both institutions and individuals. And, of course, we digitize non-paper source materials such as film negatives, glass plates, microfilm and fiche. We use metadata standards based on best practices, which meet the needs of many of our customers, but we also work with customers’ specific metadata requirements. We load data onto asset management software and also offer our own software to help customers put their collections online. We continue to offer microfilm services, both creating and duplicating. We reprint from digital material, whether we produce it or customers send digital files to us. And we have an in-house bindery where we can bind what we print and we also offer some rebinding services.

We started in the microfilm business in 1947 and have grown with the industry, realizing the importance of offering a full range of services for our customers. So, yes, there are digitization vendors that offer a full range of imaging services—we do, and we would be glad to talk with people who are considering imaging projects.