For our large-scale efforts, the combination of in-house scanning and contracted services gave us the highest productivity at the best price.

Barbara Aikens, Chief, Collections Processing, The Smithsonian Archives of American Art

Q: When is outsourcing the
better option?

A: When the investment in equipment, staffing, training and processing costs more in-house

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Crowley Document Scanning Services

As a partner in the conversion process, it is incumbent on The Crowley Company to help clients discern the most cost-effective manner to digitize and process archives and records. Sometimes the answer is a scanner purchase that outfits customers to take on their own digitization projects; sometimes – depending on the variety and quantity of media and deliverable demands – it makes economic or workflow sense to have the project scanned either on- or off-site by a professional conversion services bureau. And – in other cases – a hybrid approach provides the best ROI (ie: Crowley’s Digitization Services division scans a microform collection and the client does their own processing or metadata updates).

Benefits of outsourcing scanning or micrographics projects include:
  • Reduced or eliminated capital investment
    Crowley’s Digitization Services division owns, maintains and operates one of the largest digitization services floor of paper, large-format, microform, aperture card and book scanners, as well as the industry-best in processing and duplicating equipment. Additionally, Crowley has the largest capacity for non-destructive book scanning in the United States.
  • The latest in technology
    As manufacturers of scanning, duplicating, processing and digitizing equipment and re-sellers of some of the most exclusive capture hardware in the archive industry, Crowley’s Digitization Services division has inside access to research and development teams, technical staff and software engineers; this makes Crowley more capable than most to make updates to hardware or software on the scanning floor.
  • No or low overhead
    Crowley’s Digitization Services division offers three shifts of imaging experts to meet the needs of high-volume archive and records management clients. This eliminates in-house training, staff and management costs for the client.
  • A sophisticated IT infrastructure
    Crowley’s Digitization Services division has the storage capacity to process large-volume projects and the IT personnel able to help customize applications for end-use of the scanned images within a client’s framework. Additionally, The Crowley Company has developed a microfilm hosting platform called IMAGEhost which allows users to view their microfilm or microfiche on any internet-connected device in its original format (roll or jacket).
  • A large network of subcontractors
    Crowley’s Digitization Services division has access to a large network of qualified subcontractors to help provide best-price solutions to unique needs or requirements sometimes found in archival or production-level conversion projects. All work performed by subcontractors carries a Crowley guarantee for customer satisfaction.
  • Flexible deliverables
    Crowley’s Digitization Services expertise and wealth of equipment allow for a wide variety of end-user deliverables, including  TIFF, JPEG, JPEG 2000, PDF image-only (single/multi-page), PDF with hidden text, OCR output, XML and many other file formats as well as 16 or 35mm microfilm from color or grayscale images.

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