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How Non-Profit Vidwest Studios Solved Logistical Issues with Booqable

Author: Nathan Crossley November 20, 2023 · 3 Min read
How Non-Profit Vidwest Studios Solved Logistical Issues with Booqable

Vidwest Studios

Founded

2019

Industry

Film equipment rentals

Location

Missouri, USA

Website

www.vidwest.org

Key features used

  • Inventory Management

  • Squarespace Integration

  • Online Bookings

It’s never nice to see local community centers disappear and become abandoned. While many wish they could do something to stop it, Vidwest Studios took the steps to start a non-profit to save their local community media center. They provide free and low-cost access to film production equipment and studio space to residents. When they ran into logistical issues, they started using Booqable to track their reservations and manage inventory.

Vidwest Studios

In 2019, the community media center in Columbia, Missouri, was set to be closed, but a group of enthusiasts set up a non-profit called Vidwest Studios to save it. The aim was to create a community space where residents could access video equipment and studio space for free or low cost. This unique rental model in the area has become the heart of the creative community.

Vidwest Studios offers members a wide range of film equipment from Canon, Nikon, and Rode for free, including cameras, lenses, monitors, microphones, lighting, rigging, mixers, and voice recorders. The service is particularly popular among students, non-profits, and low-wage earners, though anyone can use it.

The business has one part-time paid staff member and over a dozen core volunteers that power its operations. In addition, they work with commercial productions and donors to maintain their equipment and processes. Over the last year, their member count has grown by over 60%, the most significant period of growth they have seen following the effects of the pandemic.

Solving logistical issues

As Vidwest Studios has grown, they have run into issues with keeping track of reservations, returns, and inventory, as much of this had to be done manually. As a result, they began to look into software they could use to manage these workflows. After trying a few different options, they found that Booqable suited their needs perfectly and allowed them to solve these issues.

They now accept reservations through their Squarespace website by integrating Booqable’s easy-to-use online checkout system. Members have complimented this upgrade, while it also allows staff to keep them accountable with a clear paper trail. This has also reduced the manual work required to keep records of reservations.

It is also easier to manage reservations and inventory as everything is synced up, allowing them to see what is available quickly. A benefit of this is reduced loss and quickly being able to find where a piece of equipment is expected to be. The result of these features is that their logistical issues are completely solved, and they can stay on top of their inventory management.

Serving the community

Vidwest Studios hopes to be able to serve their community for many years to come and provide access to film equipment to those who may otherwise not have access to it. They have seen great success so far, and this has only increased as they have overcome challenges throughout the years.

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