In 2017, the Triangle Research Library Network Collections Council approved the proposal for a pilot project that would examine the logistics, workflows, efficiency, cost, and benefits of in-network cooperative cataloging for non-roman script resources compared to vendor outsourcing. In January 2018, the project managers, Denise Soufi, Middle Eastern Cataloger at UNC Chapel Hill, and Nanako Thomas, Catalog Librarian for Japanese Language Resources at Duke University, created a project charter and logistical plan whereby 100 Arabic language titles from Duke would be cataloged at UNC and 100 Japanese language titles from UNC would be cataloged at Duke. The project managers tracked their time spent cataloging as well as time spent selecting and preparing books for shipment, receiving cataloged books, and importing records into each institution’s ILS. When the project was completed at the end of June, and with the assistance of Natalie Sommerville, Team Lead, Monographic Original Cataloging at Duke, this data was compared with outsourcing data previously collected by Duke to ascertain the cost and benefits of the project.
The pilot demonstrated that on a cost-per-title basis, in-network cataloging is a more cost-effective solution than vendor outsourcing when in-house language specialists are not available, with the added bonus of higher quality cataloging. In our poster, we will primarily use charts to illustrate the phases of the project and present the raw data and analyses, including workflows, tables, and bar graphs. We hope that our project will inspire other library consortiums to find in-network solutions for cataloging resources requiring specialized expertise.