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AAUP 2007: Presswide Database (D. Shear)
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AAUP 2007: Presswide Database (D. Shear)

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  • The eloquence process Thursday evening (5PM CST) Over the weekend Monday Tuesday Feedback Files

Transcript

  • 1. From Nothing to TMM Or, how Northwestern University Press decided to invest in a press-wide database and why we chose the one we did Donna Shear June 15, 2007 AAUP Annual Meeting
  • 2. From Nothing to TMM A Little Background History Systems:
      • A small server on which we placed transmittal forms (Word Documents), production costing sheets (Excel Documents), media names and addresses (FileMaker)
      • Most Press employees could also access CDC fulfillment system for current title information (e.g., inventory on particular titles, sales on individual titles, etc.)
    Sales Department Tools: Website: As late as 2002, NU Press used the following for its information sharing:
      • Website was static
        • If a price or publication date changed, needed to be done manually
        • Difficult to update website to take advantage of seasons/sales, etc.
      • Sales department created spreadsheets to satisfy requirements of various electronic trading partners (e.g., amazon, Baker and Taylor) or handwritten “buy” sheets (e.g., Barnes and Noble)
      • Sell sheets were done as Word documents
  • 3. From Nothing to TMM What We Felt We Needed
    • A central place to put all data that everyone at the Press needed to share
      • Author, title, author’s address and other vital information
      • Publication date
      • Key bibliographic information such as price, trim size, binding
    • A simpler way to keep our web site active and up-to-date
    • Help with transmittal of new information to trading partners, as well as any updates
    1 2 3
  • 4. From Nothing to TMM What We Felt We Needed
    • Less important, but nice to have:
      • Production schedule
      • Publicity contact management system
      • Contracts tickler system
    a b c
  • 5. From Nothing to TMM Making the Choice
    • Would feed our web site
    • Robust system we could add to as we got more sophisticated
    • Assurance of continued technical support (a concern if we were to go with another university press’s home-grown system)
    • Eloquence
    The primary reasons we chose TMM (Quality Solutions) were:
  • 6. What is eloquence? Barnes & Noble (ONIX) Amazon (Amazon +ONIX) Bowker (ONIX +Amazon) Ingram (ONIX) Borders (Amazon) Baker & Taylor (ONIX) B & T Distribution (xls) B & N Distribution (xls) Muse (ONIX) Yahoo Books (ONIX) Books-a-Million (ONIX) Children’s Literature (Amazon) Google (ONIX) Library of Congress (ONIX) Powells (Amazon + ONIX) Andersen Merchandise (832) Follett (832 + xls) Northshire Bookstore (xls) Hastings (Custom) Many Others (Custom + xls) Excel ONIX EDI 832 Amazon Custom Many others [This slide courtesy of QSI.]
  • 7. From Nothing to TMM The Reality Data-Entry Challenges: Difficult and Time-Consuming Publicity Model Had Limitations Production Model Met with Resistance
      • It turned out to be very difficult to pour the CDC data into TMM, although eventually we got it ironed out; bad data doesn’t suddenly become good because you’ve got a new system
      • Other content that was less than pristine had tons of glitches
      • Hired two interns for entire summer to input data that wasn’t able to flow in from CDC or Excel spreadsheets
      • Outputting media mailing labels was challenging for a number of tiny but annoying reasons (e.g., zip codes that began in “0” were challenging; foreign addresses were challenging)
      • No easy contact-management system
      • Automatic cascading of dates didn’t allow for easy tweaking
      • Existing system was easily understandable, so switching seemed
      • unnecessary by some departments
  • 8. From Nothing to TMM Some Recent Developments
    • Moved from “seat-based” system to server-based
      • Can now access remotely
      • Number of users not limited
    • Migrated our web site from university server to QSI server
    • CDC offered a modified version of TMM to all its distribution clients; this change means that all our TMM data flows to CDC and then out to trading partners
    • Eventually abandoned publicity module for Act One contact management system
  • 9. CDC Model TMMWeb QSI-QSI Feed CIS PUB CDC TMM Nightly Feed File All other CDC Client presses UC Press TMM TMMWeb UC Press Distribution Clients SIU Press TMM NWU Press TMM Island Press TMM IKE UMN Press Stanford Biblio Vault [This slide courtesy of QSI.]
  • 10. From Nothing to TMM The Challenges
    • Must determine who is responsible for entering and/or updating information and at what point in the process
    • Must be fastidious in keeping TMM data up-to-date and accurate
    • While flow of data to CDC eliminates “double entry,” it also has met with some serious glitches (our system is mapped slightly differently)
    1 2 3
  • 11. From Nothing to TMM Who Does What?
    • TMM—or any press-wide database—is only as good as the data that is entered
    • Departmental responsibilities were determined, but must be constantly revisited
    • Here’s how we chose to do it:
  • 12. From Nothing to TMM Department Responsibilities 1 2 N/A Certain fields feed to web site including description, author bio, blurbs; Other fields feed to sell sheets, which are created in TMM N/A Important Notes Data entered: trim size, estimated page count, number of illustrations/galleries, estimated delivery date, estimated pub date, print run estimate Production Title changes, author/trans/editor changes, season, catalog copy, description, author bio, blurbs, BISAC and subject codes, CDC information Marketing During final preparation of the current season’s catalog Updating for Catalog and Sell Sheets Title, Author/Translator/ Editor/Foreword by, Contact information, rights information, ISBN Acquisitions On receipt of contract and assignment of ISBN Creating a New Title Record Data Entered Who When Step
  • 13. From Nothing to TMM Department Responsibilities (Cont’d) 3 4 N/A Status of book is changed to appropriate category On out of print books or books we’ve lost rights to On delivery of books to warehouse Activation N/A N/A N/A Important Notes Status of book is changed to “active” Sales Data entered: change in trim size, change in estimated page count, change in illustrations, revised delivery date, revised pub date, print run ordered Production Data entered: title changes, author/trans/editor changes, changes in contact information Acquisitions Ongoing Ongoing updates Data Entered Who When Step
  • 14. From Nothing to TMM Future
    • We would like to make use of other aspects of TMM such as the contracts module and the production module
    • What’s holding us up?
      • Contracts module: means manually inputting data from 2,000 contracts; task was started, but not completed
      • Production module: we have been very happy with our Excel and FileMaker production schedules so we are less than motivated to transfer data over; also, it is tricky to print reports from TMM and we require the production schedule printed out each week
  • 15. From Nothing to TMM Questions?
    • Any questions?