In 2012, AACE International will introduce an exciting new addition to our communications portfolio to supplement our
Cost Engineering journal. The new addition, Source, is a bimonthly digital publication focusing on association activities and items of interest to the total cost management community. Beginning in February 2012,
Source will be published in even number months while the
Cost Engineering journal will be published six times per year in the odd number months.
While the frequency of the Cost Engineering journal will be reduced, the actual number of technical articles published will remain the same or be increased, according to AACE International Executive Director Dennis Stork. “We studied our readership preference surveys and determined that the Cost Engineering journal’s most valued feature were our technical articles. We are committed to publishing the same number of technical papers per year or more in our new bimonthly format. As a result, the
Cost Engineering journal will have a larger page count than the current format but will be more heavily weighted toward technical articles,” Stork commented.
The alternating publications allow greater flexibility in communicating with AACE International members by taking advantage of the inherent strengths of each medium. The print-based CE journal will have technical articles and material that is not as time-sensitive while
Source will feature more timely news, practice-oriented techniques and will take advantage of its digital format to embed audio and video components, as well as greater interactivity. The virtual publication will also cover association activities, including the President’s Message, reports from associate boards, committees and information on meetings and certifications offered by the Association.
Among the regular features in Source will be the release of latest editions of
AACE Presents, the Association’s online presentations of outstanding technical papers from our Annual Meeting as narrated by the actual presenters. The online presentations will be supplemented by interactive links to our Virtual Library, as well as to discussion forums that will allow readers the option to comment on the two presentations featured and to post questions to the authors.
Source will also include interactive surveys to gauge member’s opinions and attitudes on various topics ranging from Association’s programs to trends in the practice of total cost management. Video and audio interviews with AACE International leaders will be included in the future. The flexibility to expand and contract the digital publication will provide a platform to display more photos of members engaged in association activities, especially those at the section and regional level. The
Source will include articles on total cost management issues that are less technical and more practice-oriented than those featured in the Cost Engineering journal.
One of the exciting features of digital nature of Source will be its ability to integrate directly with the AACE International website. The planned first edition of
Source, the Association will coincide with the Association completing its migration to a cloud-hosted association management software called Avectra
netForum. In the future, Source will allow us to demonstrate the new features of the software by embedding screen-capture videos to demonstrate to members how to maximize value from our web-based resources, such as the Virtual Library and the Visual Total Cost Management Framework.
“Source will allow us to place information in front of our members in a more timely, engaging and interactive fashion. We can literally make changes to The
Source only moments before it is being deployed online, allowing us deadline flexibility that our print-based journal would never allow. The ability to link to other online resources will add additional impact to our articles. And the digital version will save staff time and dues dollars while reducing the environmental impact inherent in a physical publication,” Stork commented. Stork noted that the new publication format presents a more contemporary, progressive image for the Association that should be more appealing among younger prospective members.
Both the Cost Engineering journal and Source will be supported partially through advertising. However,
Source will allow advertisers to deploy audio, video and more engaging digital techniques such as flash animation and direct links to their own websites. Another major advantage of
Source’s digital format is that it can be readily expanded to handle late-breaking news or larger documents that might not fit into the
Cost Engineering journal format. By reducing the print deadlines from 12 times per year to six, the alternating publication schedule will allow AACE International editorial and production staff to focus on improved quality control, rather than rushing to the next publication deadline.
“The combination of these two publications will increase our capacity to provide members with quality technical papers while also offering more timely and engaging digital information that can be targeted to our diverse membership. We believe that this strategy not only enhances our communications capabilities but also demonstrates good stewardship of limited financial resources,” Stork concluded.