Jun 1, 2023 | Case Study

Restoring order to bureau library and archive

Business need: Make valuable records and artifacts discoverable

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has a network of geographically distributed libraries and archives. When LAC Federal conducted a current state analysis, it was determined that this resource was in physical and intellectual disarray. Historical records and artifacts were neglected and lacking archival integrity. All the library locations had uncatalogued items and none of them had a current and accurate inventory of resources. Many of the materials that were in the catalog were represented by outdated or inconsistent records. As a result, valuable items and resources could not be found or utilized to answer questions and fulfill requests.

Unorganized shelves
Business solution: Restore inventory order and integrity

LAC Federal was selected to restore order and integrity to the bureau’s network of libraries and archives. Within one calendar year, we were able to:

Update inventory lists for all library locations in Maryland, including monographs, government documents, internal publications, periodicals, technical publications, treatises and multimedia.
Record a list of books currently missing or uncataloged.
Transfer materials to the geographically appropriate location.
Acquire and catalog new books to reflect and respond to evolving user needs.
Solicit and collect items for the archives while completing an inventory of nearly half the rare books, personal papers, reports, publications and correspondence.
These essential projects were completed while fulfilling ongoing responsibilities such as answering reference requests, performing research, cataloging and acquisitions.

Business outcome: Control over high-value, historical content
Cost savings were realized through greater resource control, eliminating redundant replacements and protecting high-value historical archives while reducing and maximizing physical space requirements.
Better institutional knowledge avoids duplication of effort while allowing scholars, legislators and the public to learn from history.
Staff and leadership can find and gain access to what they need, when they need it.
Increased access to information serves the public, enables the agency to fulfill its mission and empowers federal employees to perform at the highest possible level.

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