Collaborative Librarianship, Vol 4, No 2 (2012)

Collaborative Project Development in the Creation of an Interdepartmental Digitization Workflow

Valerie Prilop, R. Niccole Westbrook, Elizabeth M. German

Abstract


Creating workflows that involve the work of multiple departments within a large organization can be challenging, especially when the procedure itself is complex and involves a number of stakeholders. This paper describes and evaluates a collaborative project to develop an interdepartmental workflow for the digitization of unique library materials in a mid-sized academic library. The project includes an automated project management and materials tracking system. Project development involved three separate departments with different reporting channels. In order to navigate this difficulty and manage the large size of the project, a visual planning technique that included graphical representations of current and proposed workflows, as well as implementation timelines, was used. This visual planning technique allowed the project team to clearly organize their thoughts and plans and proved helpful in soliciting buy-in from stakeholders. The paper will outline the collaborative planning process, addressing the rewards and challenges of tackling such a project within a large organization, and present lessons learned for others attempting similar endeavors.

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