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Supply Panel for Digitisation of Heritage Materials

The Supply Panel has been established to make it  easier for the Library and other agencies to access  capable and experienced suppliers of digitisation services for heritage materials.

State Library staff handling heritage material

The State Library’s unrivalled collections comprise over 6.3 million items including photographs, paintings, drawings, printed and talking books, architectural plans, maps, newspapers, microfilm and microfiche, oral histories, films and videos, computer software and other objects. The collection is large, diverse, and highly valued and used by many, including students, academics, researchers and the creative industries.

Under the Digital Excellence Program, the NSW Government has contributed significant funds to help fast track the Library’s digitisation program and to upgrade its digital infrastructure. Since 2012, the Library has embarked on a 10-year digitisation strategy that will help cement the Library's status as a world-leading library and centre for digital excellence. The Library is digitising our iconic, at risk, and highly valued collections to make them accessible online. Digital material is being created and preserved on a scale never before seen in Australia.

Many of the items in the Library’s collections are rare, fragile or complex and require specialist skills in handing, digitising and the creation of digital derivatives. To identify specialists with the skills to undertake this work the SLNSW has created the Supply Panel for Digitisation of Heritage Materials.

This panel provides a framework in which specialised digitisation sub-categories can be formed to bring together suppliers who have capabilities and experience with specific physical collection formats.  The Supply Panel has been established with guidance from procurement branches in Department of Justice, Department of Industry and from consultant procurement specialists.

Panel members have been evaluated in a number of criteria focussed around capability and experience in digitising specific collection categories – as well as having their equipment and premises assessed by State Library subject matter experts.  Additionally, the respondents are asked to complete a Proof of Concept work sample prior to them being accepted as panel members.

The Supply Panel has been structured to allow other eligible agencies (including local, State and Federal government) access to suppliers who have been assessed by Library specialists, giving agencies more certainty that the suppliers are capable and minimizing the time spent in developing their own assessment and procurement processes.  Using the suite of tender documents created for the panel, Agencies can approach one or more members of the panel can simply define requirements, request a quote and set a time schedule for work to be completed in.

The recently completed Request for Proposal focused on the creation of the overall Supply Panel arrangement and its first category – Digitisation Services for Printed Materials (books, serials, music, pamphlets etc).

Future categories will aim to identify suppliers who can deliver digitisation services for:

  • Photographic (Pictorial Negatives, prints, photographic albums etc.);
  • Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and Related Services;
  • Maps and plans;
  • Manuscripts (diaries, letters, log books, registers, etc);
  • Microfilm and Microfiche;
  • Film and Video (35, 16 & 8mm film, VHS, Betamax, U-matic, 8mm etc.);
  • Data and other obsolete formats (3 ½”, 5 ¼” floppy discs, removable data cartridges etc.).

For further information regarding the Supply Panel for the Digitisation of Heritage Materials scheme please see: