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Negotiating the web of information services

For information managers, clinicians, researchers and academic professionals, the proliferation of information has made it increasingly challenging to find the right resources, when they need it to assist in critical, decision-making tasks. Every institution has a different spectrum of users with different needs and user patterns. Content seekers must not only be able to find information channels that provide value quickly and seamlessly, but these channels should also ideally be tailor-made and mobile in order to be most effective. This need has triggered the growth and demand in portals, which cater not just for the need for visibility but allow organisations to brand their information management services. With the growth in portal systems, come questions about how seamless the integration of information can get without compromising the integrity of the content and the brand. Should users have to learn and navigate yet another search interface? How much value can portals deliver in terms of brand and value?

Ovid, a leader in electronic medical, health and life sciences information solutions, has been providing customisable services for more than 16 years and is recognised within the industry as the leader in offering a combination of content, tools and services that makes research smarter, faster and more effective. The company's products are developed to provide individualised experiences that are tailored to each customer's needs. One such solution is Ovid's Portal Advantage Service.

The Portal Advantage Service was created to help societies, their publishing partners, independent journal publishers, foundations, and corporations to build fully customisable portals. This content management service enables customers to make their published content available online, as well as to offer rich medical content and resources to support their users' information, research and collaboration needs. In addition to specialised content, the service provides collaboration, customisation, and community features that allow publishers to enhance their customer and member relationships. In terms of additional specialised content, Ovid's Portal Advantage Service includes other value-added features, such as full design, hosting and content selection from Ovid's rich repository of bibliographic databases, journals, books, and third-party data resources such as news feeds, CME and society content.

In addition to these advanced features, the Portal Advantage Service includes a range of tools and templates that allow organisations to provide greater value to their customers and stakeholders.

Ovid offers three platform packages for the Portal Advantage Service to meet different customers' unique content, customisation and collaboration needs. These are the Express, Professional, and Preferred solution packages:

  • Express: This package represents the baseline functionality of the portal service and enables customers to maintain a brand image and deliver a core set of functionality. This service includes full text browsing, searching, viewing, and retrieval in combination with dedicated journal resource and information pages. The basic package also includes eAlerts, which notify an author when a new journal issue has been released; forward linking, which establishes a relationship to successor articles; and relevance-ranked search results.
  • Professional: This package includes all of the features and services offered by the Express package, but it also offers options for supplementary content and customisation features. These features include online peer-review tracking, membership management and financial reporting, discussion forums, and an ArticlePlus feature that allows for the posting of multi-media content and supplemental article information such as editorial commentary. Other features include archival of abstract content, and custom business rules, such as archival access and referral authentication.
  • Preferred: The Preferred package builds upon the features and services from both the Express and Professional packages. It offers a dynamic web presence and has an enhanced selection of interactive components. Features available in this package include online CME testing, live discussion forums, classified ads, and case reports (independent from the print product). Preferred sites not only provide online access to full text content published in the print product, but can also serve as a stand-alone web resource for creating user community experiences.


    Ovid plans to add more author and researcher-focused functionality, such as article pre-publication, which allows the publisher to provide a Table of Contents and select articles to users in advance of the print version.

    Organisations such as the Nestl� Foundation have already started to gain from the benefits that Ovid's Portal Advantage Service has to offer. The Nestl� Foundation for the Study of Problems of Nutrition in the World, which initiates and supports research into human nutrition in low income countries, has partnered with Ovid to develop enLINK, its electronic nutrition library initiative utilising the Portal Advantage Service. enLINK enables researchers and doctors in developing countries to improve conditions in nutrition and health. Through Ovid's Portal Advantage Service, the Nestl� Foundation provides access to peer-reviewed scientific journals to meet their critical needs.

    Content seekers and researchers are making substantial investments to purchase electronic equipment. Portal solutions such as those offered by Ovid allow companies and organisations to get the mix right between maintaining their brand and creating a tailored yet simple solution. If knowledge is power, then portals hold the key to unlocking the potential that still lies within the tangled world of the web. If companies can reach the right content aggregators, publishers and websites, that's power indeed.

    contact details

    Rossella Proscia
    Tel: +44 (0)20 7981 0600
    Email: RProscia@Ovid.com
    Web: www.ovid.com