Case Study

Sydney Conservatorium of Music

The Sydney Conservatorium of Music is one of Australia’s leading University level music institutions. It has been established for more than 100 years and is highly regarded internationally.

Resources Inventory

As a leading premiere music teaching facility the Sydney Con has an extensive inventory of resources which includes more than 900+ instruments.  Many of these instruments are highly specialised and unique making them difficult to replace. The Sydney Con also has more than 500 pieces of equipment, a significant inventory requiring a sophisticated level of management.

The identification, maintenance, condition and tracking of all these resources was a major issue as there was no administration program available to the large number of staff and students responsible for their control.

A new centralised, comprehensive, easy to use system was needed.


The key issues that required an immediate solution included:

  • Locating all instruments and equipment, apart from those that could not be moved.
  • There was no method of monitoring where instruments were located either permanently or whilst on temporary or long-term loan.
  • Managing loans, especially the short term or temporary loans that were frequently required to meet the immediate demands of rehearsals and performances.
  • Repairing and maintaining instruments consistently. Maintenance and repairs were done ad-hock with no particular person responsible for supervising what was repaired or determining whether it was worth repairing or maintaining records of when it went to the repairer or when it was due back.
  • Financial planning for repairs and/or replacement of instruments and equipment was impossible due to the lack of reporting capabilities. This proved to be most challenging for the staff.
  • Establishing secure storage area for short term loans.
  • Implementing management processes for staff and students. Performance group information was difficult to work with and maintain due to the above issues.

These issues negatively impacted the organisation. Staff members were frustrated. They were unable to find instruments and believed that they were wasting valuable time chasing up students instead of teaching and carrying out other staff responsibilities.

The issues have now been resolved and the performance group situation rectified to the satisfaction of the staff.

How they solved it

The Optimo Resource Management Program had the capabilities to solve all of the problems so OptimoPlus was installed to fix the problems now, and take them into the future with additional capabilities including student management.

The SCM adopted the main components of OptimoPlus allowing them to take control using the ‘Standard Package’ which means taking existing data supplied by the organisation and processing it through the Optimo Data Cleansing Program.

Optimo staff went on site to conduct a stocktake, identification and labelling of instruments and equipment using the Optimo Integrated printer package.

The SCM adopted the Express Checkout installation which uses a receipt system for short-term loans

The SCM also located and used a dedicated and secure office area to manage the daily, quick turnover of instrument loans


As a result of the implementation of OptimoPlus, the SCM now has complete control of their inventory. Instruments and equipment are now fully accounted for; loans are under control and a Preventative Maintenance Program ensures that instruments are all kept in good condition. The need for reporting of student attendance, ensemble experiences/rotation, results and scholarships are now achieved.

Scott Ryan Syd Conservatorium of Music Optimo Systems

WE HAVE FINALLY DONE IT! We have merged ALL of our ensembles from OPAS to OPTIMO! To say life is easier would be an understatement! The beginning of our academic year has never gone more smoothly in the time I’ve been at the Con, and, reportedly it was the smoothest start to rehearsals in living memory.

I put this down to two things; Better administrative practice, and OPTIMO. Monitoring student attendance has never been easier the instant automated attendance email has seen a huge improvement in student accountability.

Reporting of ensemble data is a dream! I am regularly called upon to report to the administration on student participation, retention and degree path. In the short time that I have had this information in OPTIMO, it has literally saved me hours of work compiling meaningful reports I don’t want you to say “I told you so”, but OPTIMO is a life saver!!! Scott Ryan | Artistic Planning Manager Sydney Conservatorium of Music

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