The Museum Service of France offers to the publishing companies of collections management software that wish it, a procedure of validation of the functionalities related to the ten-year document of the collections, on the tools they equip the museums of France.

Why a validation procedure?

Museums in France use various computer tools to describe and manage the collections under their responsibility. Some features of these tools have a regulatory impact, the preservation or dissemination of public collections. This is why the French Museum Service offers companies who wish to validate certain functionalities relevant to its expertise, notably regulatory.
The aim is to provide museums in France with tools that respect the recommendations and technical specifications produced by the French Museum Service. As a result, collection automation practices are increasing in homogeneity and in quality.

Implications of this procedure

The validation procedure proposed to companies who so wish implies that they:
- implement the technical specifications of the French Museum Service,
- do assess the relevant functionalities by the teams of the French Museum Service and thus benefit from their advice and professional knowledge,
- offer these features to their customers on their tools, without specific development.

This validation refers to the date of deployment of the functionalities in the tool concerned, for the version released on that date.
Companies are then expected to follow developments in the specifications they are notified of and published on the Museums website.
Other versions of these tools have been deployed since this validation, it is up to the museums to ensure with the publisher that the relevant functionalities are operational in the currently released version.

Procedure procedure

The providers interested in this partnership are invited to study beforehand the prescriptions of the French museum service and the reference documents mentioned below.

A first contact with the Collections Sub-Directorate is the occasion for a demonstration of the product developed by the service provider and on which it wishes to adapt or develop features to be validated. This is the occasion of a swap methodological information, questions and answers on the specifications of the museum service of France. This meeting determines theopportunity module development and/or validation. If yes: the objectives of the partnership are defined with the teams of the museum service of France.
Follow several working sessions, in face-to-face or distance, with the sub-directorate of Collections of the French Museum Service, to verify the correct understanding of the specifications and the proper functioning of the elements developed.

The service provider retains control of the calendar analysis and development of functionalities. It can be combined with the support of one or more testing museums.

At the end of the validation procedure, the shared validated functionalities are reported publicallyt by the French Museum Service.

The IT tools on which these functionalities are focused meet various objectives. Some are software programs to manage collections of museum objects from their acquisition until they are put online; others are tools strictly dedicated to inventory and regulatory proofing or to publication on Mona Lisa.

Museums are invited to inform themselves as fully as possible to ensure that the tool meets their needs precisely evaluated beforehand.

Scope and description of the functionalities linked to the ten-year financial statement

The objective of proofing is to check periodically (every ten years) the presence and integrity of collections assigned or received in deposit by a museum of France.

Since 2006 (publication of the circular on proofing), museums have benefited the most from the computerization of this procedure.

Thus the functionalities of a collection management tool applying the specifications of the French Museum Service must meet the major requirements of this administrative procedure:
"Proofing is the operation of verifying, on the piece and on the spot, from a good or its inventory number:
- the presence of the property in the collections;
- its location;
- the condition of the property;
- its marking;
- the conformity of the entry in the inventory with the property and, where appropriate, with the various documentary sources, archives, works files, catalogues." (Article 11 of the decree of 25 May 2004).

The functionalities make it possible to enter the information needed for the ten-year collection collection collection collection collection campaign, within the existing database and/or a preset input format (as-built sheets).

They also make it possible toexploit these data (in particular by providing statistical elements for the proofing campaign minutes), keep the history and details of successive campaigns, to ensure the post-proofing and subsequent payments.

Validation steps

  • Development of the plug computerized (according to current regulations) from the existing fields in the software documentation database,
  • Verification of the display and structure of information, entered and printed,
  • Verification of the generation of information necessary for minutes to the collection of statistical data
  • Final validation given by the collections sub-directorate (after possible demonstration of the tested module)


Reference documents


Validated functionalities

Tool    SocietyDate of validation of functionalities
Actimuseo    A&A Partners01/2009
Collective Access SAS Ideesculture01/2014
Flora museums Decalog02/2011
Micromuseum V7Axiell11/2018
Museum Pluszetcom SA10/2017
WebmuseoA&A Partners09/2011


Services and contacts

For the Collections Branch: Carine Prunet in connection with the Office of Inventory of Collections and Circulation of Cultural Property