Using FlexFields and Alerts for Workflow, Prioritization, and Resource Allocation

The Saint Louis Art Museum is home to an encyclopedic collection of over 34,000 works of art, with seven curatorial departments, a robust team of registrars, and a newly-formed digital assets department. In 2017, with a digital strategy in place and a new website in development, SLAM began a new process to provide more object records online while maintaining careful standards control. To promote efficiency and facilitate communication across departments, we identified ‘power users’, implemented digital signoffs in the form of FlexFields, and created TMS Alerts for workflow and data-quality control. With the new FlexFields and a few SQL queries, we now use data analysis tools to monitor progress over time, and make better-informed decisions about future projects. As staff grow more comfortable with this system, we are identifying additional TMS areas in which similar methods may be used to streamline workflows and provide data for future analysis.

Carol Clark, Collections Database Administrator, Saint Louis Art Museum

Carol Clark is the Collections Database Administrator at the Saint Louis Art Museum. Before joining SLAM in 2016, she worked primarily in collections management in history museums, including the Missouri Historical Society’s Library and Research Center. Her interests include facilitating communication, improving workflows, and using existing data to better understand patterns, identify priorities, and address areas of need. Carol holds a BA in Ethnomusicology (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) and a Graduate Certificate in Museum Studies (Northern Illinois University). When not contemplating collection information, she can often be found operating a sound system, playing music, or dancing.