The NAA has embarked on a project to ensure Australia’s World War II Army and Air Force service records are freely accessible online to all Australians, wherever they live. This huge project, to be conducted over a four-year period, involves the digitisation of 850,000 records and will be a highly significant achievement with a great deal of meaning for Australians.
Micro Image is working to digitise up to 11 million images contained in the WWII Air Force service records. The records contained in this series are the more fragile of all the WWII service records including delicate and brittle paper, photographic prints and acetate and nitrate negatives.
The project involves:
- Catalogue and prepare records for digitisation
- Digitise records to NAA paper preservation standards
- Provide archival master image and derivatives
- Apply quality assurance processes
- Create filenames and directories per NAA protocol
- Perform file integrity tests, generate checksums and provide metadata work reports
- Transfer data securely to NAA
- Reinstate physical documents and transfer securely to NAA
How we approached this project
The initial planning phase has been integral to the successful commencement of this project. Micro Image has a unique approach to working with each client at the outset of complex long-term projects to set them up for success – it is based on a framework that supports open and active communication, true teamwork and agile collaboration. This enabled Micro Image to work with NAA to apply standards and variations that are beyond existing guidelines, resulting in increased digitisation standards and outcomes from the outset.
Micro Image has been recognised as delivering digitisation for this project that is of a very high standard. NAA have also noted how well our team works to provide exceptional project management, using a feedback loop for continuous improvement. Timelines for the project were set in partnership with the client to ensure KPI’s and standards are met.
Micro Image also utilise best practice QA for this project. Every single page is ‘eye-balled’ as it is digitised and cross-checked against the original record. When you are dealing with such large volumes of records and images, Micro Image realises that every moment counts and can add up to hours, days and weeks of efficiency gains or losses.
To improve project throughput for capture, QA, delivering derivatives and checksums, Micro Image has implemented processes to automate steps that would normally be done manually, saving weeks of time over the duration of the project. A custom-designed automated process was also developed to assist with the complex file naming protocol and downstream document and image creation, again creating efficiencies and ensuring total accuracy.