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Contract management software

I would like to make two points about recent discussions about
managing contracts through some kind of software. The first is
regarding the recent comment about studying what the licensors use.
I think this is a great idea in general - we should study their
literature and techniques to understand their perspective for our
own purposes. 

Second, I have wished for contract management software to be attacted 
to the cataloging/bibliographic records like order records and circ 
records. I dislike having a lot of places to go to find information 
pertaining to the ordering, payment, receipt, circuluation, and use 
of material.  i.e. I want it all in the same database so I can find 
it with one search and link the information to other relevant 
information in the library database such as price, renewal dates, 
publisher, vendor, etc.  Why repeat this information?  

Ideally perhaps, the usage information also should be there, just
like circ data, so that stats can be gathered and cross tabulated
with other information about the resource.

There are several questions and tactics that could be explored. 1) We
collectively could create and share an Access-type database that is
easy for folks to use with standardized fields so we can adapt to our
own libraries. 2) We can create our own databases with our own choice
of software. 3) We can ignore the problem. 4) We could pursue yet
another component for systems vendors to develop (or put URL's in
the records to link to a database record of the contract or use some
kind of scripting langauge to link). 5) We could see if a software
company would be interested in developing something of this nature
since libraries aren't the only ones who manage licenses.

It seems to me since our lives are going to be more and dominated by
managing contracts that a shared solution should be explored.

Joyce L. Ogburn
AUL for Information Resources and Systems
Old Dominion University Library
Norfolk VA 23529
Phone 804-683-4189
Fax 804-683-5767
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