Site Visits Crucial to Vendor Selection
9 August 2016 - 7:17, by , in Media Management, Comments off

No matter the industry, customers have countless vendors willing to take the job. So how does a procurement specialist narrow down the list of potential vendors? One of the most proven strategies for vendor research is the site visit.


In the matter of media migration, organizations have to be comfortable sending priceless assets to a vendor for digitization. This requires a strong, trusting relationship between the client (you) and vendor. One way to build that faith is through an effective site visit.


Whether through a quote or through a full-fledged RFP (request for proposal), the information provided by the vendor is typically boilerplate and one-dimensional. Merchant statements typically mention secured storage environments, climate controlled environments and the ability to meet specific deadlines. Doing due diligence by touring the facility gives you the ability to determine if the vendor can actually meet your expectations.


After all, these assets are essentially the client’s children… would you send your child to a daycare that you’ve never visited?


Touring the facility of the potential vendor allows you to get a firsthand, behind-the-scenes take on how the business operates. It also serves as an effective complement to the written proposal. Your areas of focus during the visit will vary depending on your service needs but there are a few main points (and questions of concern) to note when touring a facility.

Questions of Concern During a Site Visit

  1. Security, both physical and environmental
  2. Do doors remain locked or are they left ajar?
  3. Are the storage areas temperature controlled?
  4. Who has access to restricted areas?
  5. Personnel
  6. Are you able to meet the team that will be working on your project?
  7. Do you understand their method of communication?
  8. Are they in-tune with your expectations?
  9. Do your personalities mesh (especially important for long projects)?
  10. Are they friendly and engaging? This is a big indicator of employee happiness and, in turn, respect for the client’s projects and content.
  11. Do they like their work? Are they passionate about it? Again, this plays heavily into their quality control and overall performance.
  12. Cleanliness – Cleanliness says a lot about how employees respect their environment, and in turn, respect for the client’s material.
  13. Are the work stations clean?
  14. Does it look like there is organization within storage spaces?
  15. Space
  16. Are you undertaking a large project?
  17. Is it clear that the vendor has space and capacity to store your assets while the project is in progress?
  18. Is the storage space at the same facility as the migration unit?


Despite the countless benefits of a site visit, time and cost are usually the main deterrents from making the trip. However, the time needed to take the tour pales in comparison to the amount of time lost later in the planning process due to issues that could have been addressed and resolved during the site visit. If the project is a large purchase and involves priceless assets, the costs are justified. All things considered, it just makes good business sense.


Crawford Media Services provides premium content services, including mass digitization, human generated descriptive metadata, digital archive storage and archive asset management for all owners of media content. Our service based model allows us to provide the customized solutions necessary to meet the specialized challenges now faced by content owners. We do the heavy lifting to make unruly media collections ready for market.

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