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1.2 Million Magnetic Tapes Identified, Classified, and Relocated

Chemicals Industry | United States


With an expansive corporate headquarters under construction, this client discovered volumes of physical records and other media that needed to be moved. As a part of this discovery effort, they found 1.2 million magnetic tapes that had to be quickly and accurately relocated to a central storage facility.

Recognizing the vast scope and urgency of this effort, and their need to have it done right the first time, our client turned to us, their long term provider and trusted advisor. Access Sciences was engaged to assess, classify, index, validate, pack, and ship the magnetic tapes from an old facility to a new centralized storage facility.

Additional challenges included:

  • Over the decades, the 30+ year old facility had been managed by multiple vendors with inconsistent processes and varying levels of quality, leading to tape inventory database inaccuracies
  • Our team’s discovery that the client possessed an additional 20,000 tapes they didn’t know they owned and were unaccounted for in the tape inventory
  • The need to maintain a definitive chain of custody so that a specific tape could be accounted for at every step in the process
  • The ability to locate and retrieve an in-process tape in the event that it was needed in real-time

Client needed to relocate 1.2 million magnetic tapes to a new central storage


Rapid and accurate relocation of the client’s tape inventory enabled uninterrupted operations, consolidation of their magnetic tape assets, identification of lost or unknown tapes, and improvements to the client’s tape inventory


The client now possesses an accurate inventory and location for all relocated magnetic tapes

  • Content Analysis
  • Content Classification
  • Content Migration


Using Access Sciences’ Agile Project Management methodology, our team was able to proactively adjust our procedures and processes to meet the ever-changing needs of this client/project. After meeting with client sponsors to confirm scope and logistical requirements, our team:

  •  Mapped the existing storage facility to identify media types located on each floor and aisle
  • Determined and tracked the status of the tapes/boxes on each aisle as they were processed
  • Flagged tapes not recorded in the tape inventory system for additional research
  • Developed and managed the truck schedule; packed and loaded pallets onto the trucks for shipment to the new storage facility
  • Tracked every pallet/box with detailed transmittals to support shipment to central storage
  • Developed and maintained a listing of every tape in the shipped boxes for reconciliation and updated the client’s tape inventory system upon receipt at new storage facility
  • Developed and maintained a delivery schedule for central storage so they could anticipate ingestion timing and space requirements
  • Generated confirmation reports for each upload to ensure that the information entered into the tape inventory database was accurate – this process uncovered duplicates (due to preexisting tapes in the database) and other errors in the client’s database


Rapid and accurate relocation of the client’s magnetic tapes enabled uninterrupted operations, consolidation of their magnetic tape assets, identification of lost or unknown tapes, and improvement to the client’s tape inventory. During the project, Access Sciences’ team:

  •  Validated, tracked, and shipped 1.2 million magnetic tapes, maintaining a documented chain-of-custody for all tapes throughout the process
  • Supported real-time retrieval of tapes for operational needs
  • Performed tape inventory updates for all validated tapes
  • Found and validated 20,000 tapes previously lost or missing
  • Performed 25,000+ safe work-hours, including: 0 Lost-time injuries; safely loaded 46 semi-trailer shipments; 59,000 boxes packed, loaded, and moved; and performed 65 loss prevention observations.

In addition to the originally scoped activities, Access Sciences also provided added value by:

  •  Identifying a conversion pattern which enabled the expedient validation of 55,000+ magnetic tapes with irregular identification numbers, saving the client more than $100,000
  • Discovering and indexing 20,000 magnetic tapes not currently represented in the tape inventory database, enabling business decisions while the tapes await further processing

The client now possesses an accurate inventory and central location for all relocated magnetic tapes, including 20,000 tapes previously lost or missing. Access Sciences established a relationship with the client as a trusted advisor by exceeding client expectations for quality and completing project objectives under budget, and within the established time-frame.

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