Most of our professional literature talks about the fear of obsolescence in context to these projects.
While that is a fear not to be minimized, there is another fear that archivists have and that is running out of budget. Whether not imagining they have enough money to even begin or anxiety over running out in funds in the middle, these fears hamper digital projects and success.
How to avoid this is not well documented and yet business processes are clear and supportive.
We need to stop making solo archivists re-invent the wheel when embarking on a digital project.
Report generation is something that is often put to the side.
It is vital for management
You can feasibly track EVERYTHING.
Staff time on the Internet
Average chat reference length
Satisfaction with reference interaction
Improvement in digital response, breadth of content, depth of content, user volume, etc.
Sample Time Ticket 115 9 100 8 15 1 QC-001 55 10 45 8 10 2 Index - 0002 6 60 6 Index-0001 65 13 40 8 25 5 Scan-0003 0 2 2 AMP-002 DAM Meeting HO prod# HO prod# HO prod# HO prod# HO prod# HO prod# HO prod# Totals Sat/Sun Friday Thursday Wednesday Tuesday Monday Client/Work Order 8/15/2010 Week Ending: Willie C. Durant Employee Name: 220 Bagley, Suite 828, Detroit, MI 48226, phone: 313-963-6355, fax: 413-383-9946 Daily Time Sheet Archive Media Partners, Inc.
1) The through-put of the scanning is making the goals but the through-put for the other tasks is holding the entire project behind.
2) More staff needs to be given to indexing and qc or decreasing scanning might be an option.
3) The backlog of quality check is increasing at a faster rate than indexing. This might mean that there are issues with the training of the staff or an increase in questions with the indexing. The indexing process might need to be examined as well.
4) Looking at increases month to month might be important rather than quarterly.
If nothing is done, you risk having your collection piled high in incomplete stacks instead of fully digitized and refiled.
Evaluating how your budget is progressing is important. A weekly or monthly review is recommended and even more frequently if needed.
This means that overages can be caught before the it is too late.
In the previous example, we see a few things that affect the through-put for hitting completion but what about the impact on budget?
Not enough is typically done to think about the dollars that are now needed. The impact of slow-downs in tasks might be greater search time to answer a user research request or it might mean the project goes tremendously over budget.
Akin to public libraries that look at their circulation numbers for the year and multiply out the cost per book to get a total purchase price for books and magazines that shrinks the cost of a millage. Creating these numbers is an important selling tool in developing your budget.
Perhaps, you plan to digitize your 75 most requested images. This will then cut down on repeat questions and create an economy of scale.
This when uploaded to your website also creates a buzz about your archive and its valuable contents. Media coverage can be quantified.
The more people know about your archive, the more they will use it and sustain it.
This tells us that Henry and John should not be scanning?
Mary is a stronger scanner?
If Henry did all of the scanning for 1000 images then it would take him 400 hours. If Mary did it, she would take about 143 hours. With a rate of pay of $20 per hour the cost difference IF quality is the same would be:
Henry $8000 vs. Mary at $2860 with a dollar difference of $ 5140.