When preparing to digitise your audiovisual collection, get clear on the why.

For any organisation with a film, video or audiotape collection that is considering digitising some or all of its content, one of the first key steps is to clearly think through and delineate the reasons why digitisation is right for that particular audiovisual collection. There may be many reasons why an organisation might choose to embark on an audiovisual digitisation project; these reasons can all be broadly grouped into three key drivers – access, commercialisation and preservation.

While these are not mutually exclusive, it is important for your organisation to understand what it wants to get out of the project and prioritise those outcomes. For example digitising to commercialise your collection will potentially result in file requirements widely different to a preservation objective. Or you may want to achieve all three objectives from the project, which would have a different set of implications.

Defining the drivers of a digitisation project underpins the successful and cost-effective management of the audiovisual digitisation process, and can assist you in maximising the investment you make to share and access your collection.