MFDs in Your Library


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How can you use MFDs in your workplace to make your life easier?

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  • Good afternoon and welcome to my talk about MFDs in your Library. Do you have a fluffy dog in your Library, or how about Minties, Fantails and Darryl Lea chocolates – that would be nice. Those of you in the front rows I hope you are enjoying your after lunch treat, and they’re not pulling out your fillings! I’m sure some of you must have a “My Favourite Dewey” that you love to shelf read! I seriously hope you don’t have Mouth and Foot Disease in your library. These are just some crazy meanings I created for the acronym MFD, but really could any one of these be the correct answer?
  • Today you will learn what the letters MFD really stand for. I will tell you what an MFD does and the benefits we have found from using them in the Library at the University of WA. I won’t be giving you any information on the technical aspect of MFDs.
  • So ….. What is an MFD? For a few moments please turn to your neighbour, introduce yourself and tell them what you think the letters MFD stand for? Gauge audiences response and chatter…. Count for 30 seconds and then keep going . OK – excuse me everyone, we need to get back to the talk now. I hope you had some creative ideas out there. So what really is an MFD?
  • Ta da – an MFD is a Multi Function Device. I am sure most of you are thinking that this just looks like my average photocopier that sits in the corner and gathers dust. This machine is so much more than just a photocopier. The MFD shown here is a Toshiba e Studio 2500 colour. The Toshiba Australia website ( will give you more technical details about this particular machine and others they offer as well. Toshiba is only one of many companies that have MFDs. From a Google search I also found other brands such as Samsung, HP, Canon, Epsom, Brother, etc
  • As suggested by its name an MFD has “multi” functions. Your standard photocopier can make copies in black and white and colour if you’re lucky. IT and Administration staff in my library investigated which type of MFD would be suitable to what we needed. We wanted a machine we could use with a USB drive, we wanted full colour scanning and we wanted documents to be scanned as PDF, JPEG or TIF formats. We also still needed to cater for our clients and general library needs for copying and scanning. MFDs offer in a single device the ability to print, copy, fax and scan and save to local or networked drives, in other words everything I have just previously mentioned.
  • We use MFDs in 2 services at UWA Library: Document Delivery (Doc Del) and Course Materials Online (CMO) – also known as E-reserve. Our MFDs are connected to the shared network (where all staff have access to) and loaded with templates. These templates contain the scanning quality settings and the file locations where these scanned documents will be saved. For example – if I was scanning an A4 size journal with an article that had colour for a Docdel request, I would select the A4 Docdel Colour template on the MFD before starting to scan the article. By choosing this template the scanned article is automatically saved into the Docdel folder on the shared drive.. Templates for both services have the same technical settings, but are set up as separate templates so that when the document has been scanned it is saved to the correct folder on the shared drive, for Docdel it is Docdel scans, and for CMO it is CMO Scans. It is set up this way so the end processing staff in each service select the correct document for uploading in their respective systems. In Docdel scanned documents are attached to the supplying libraries request in VDX using the drag and drop method. In CMO staff upload documents into the online repository, called Hive.
  • Please raise your hand if any of you have seen or received articles that look like this? I’ve worked in Document Delivery for over 10 years and I have seen many articles sent and received in this fashion – not the best quality. Up until the beginning of last year all doc del scanning was done on a flatbed scanner using Ariel software to send articles to requesting libraries. As you can see from this example, at times the result was a poor quality scanned document. At the time there was no solution to this problem, other than re-scanning. There was a lot of double handling re-scanning articles twice and sometimes 3 or 4 times trying to get the best copy possible to send to requesting libraries. The Common “sad face” feedback we received from requesting libraries included: Extra black around the article caused printer toners to run out more quickly Quality of the print versus images was not clear If we felt images were important to the text of the article we would scan the article once in black so the writing could be read and then re-scan again in grey scale so the images would be a little clearer, but it still wasn’t the best copy. This was a very time consuming and frustrating process for us. Large file size ( this example is 703 KB) We were also sad when our scanner stopped working…….
  • So what happened when our scanner stopped working? The failure of our existing scanner gave us the opportunity to find a new way of supplying articles. We talked about buying a new scanner and updating Ariel across the Library, but we felt this wasn’t a move forward for us. We also wanted to try and improve the quality of our scanning. In November 2008 MFDs were implemented in the Library to replace all photocopiers. After a lot of discussion and research we felt that MFDs could solve our problem of poor quality scans. The MFD replaced the existing Ariel scanners and from this point on all scanning for Doc Del and CMO was done using the MFD. As you can see in this slide, there is great improvement in the quality of the scanned document, it is so much clearer than the previous slide. Copies are scanned as PDF files using the MFD. PDF files are a smaller file size than TIFFs and are more user friendly. We developed a standard which all staff follow when scanning, which means all pages of an article are scanned facing the same direction. Copies can be scanned in black and white and / or colour. We use Adobe Acrobat to optimise the document – that is to remove all background speckle and align the image vertically on the page and we use the cropping tool in Adobe to remove all the dark margins around the scanned image. We now have happy faces - requesting libraries are very happy - their scanned documents are clear and easy to read and they even get colour images instead of the previous greyscale.
  • As you have seen from the 2 previous slides, the improved quality of scanned documents is the most crucial benefit of the implementation of MFDs. Not only has the quality improved, but there has also been a reduction in the file size of the scanned document. This graph shows you how many copies we have supplied to other WA universities over the past 5 years. As you can see, there is a steep increase between 2007 (when we supplied 837 copies) and 2008 (we supplied 1339 copies). The dramatic increase in supply during this time coincided with us implementing MFDs into our scanning process. We have had feedback from Libraries across Australia complimenting our improved document quality and turnaround times and therefore they are placing UWA higher on the rota than they had previously.
  • The introduction of MFDs removed the need for a dedicated workstation (flat bed scanner, PC, Ariel software and printer) in the scanning process. We removed all the scanners and Ariel software from the Library. The PCs were used for other purposes. But most importantly the removal of this workstation freed up much need workroom space.
  • The photo on the left is of Spaghetti Junction, in Birmingham – a big mess of intertwined roads…. This also could be said of our workflows before MFDs. Before MFDs we had 2 separate workflows for Doc Del and CMO. Both were time consuming and involved double handling from staff within the main library and staff in subject libraries. Because of the way subject libraries are spread out at UWA across 3 sites, articles were copied using the photocopier and then sent via internal mail back to the main campus. Copies could go missing and this was a very inefficient process, which at times was quite messy and frustrating for all staff involved. After MFDs the scanning workflow for each service is similar (with only minor technical differences) and is more efficient. Looking at the 2 nd image, each road off the roundabout is heading to a different subject library, but all subject libraries are scanning using the MFD and the document is saved in one location on the shared network, where all staff have access to. This is a much easier and simplified workflow compared to that of the old “Spaghetti Junction” process. There is no double handling of copies or long waiting times. Copies don’t go missing in this new workflow as they are saved to the network, where a backup copy can always be supplied if required.
  • So now you know exactly what a Multi Function Device is and that it isn't all about minties, fantails and Darryl lea chocolate. I’ve only described a few benefits we’ve noticed with the implementation of MFDs at UWA Library. You can find a few more and extra information about what I’ve said today in my paper. I’ve included some training guidelines that were developed for the MFD scanning process. It details some of the technical settings in optimising and cropping using Adobe Acrobat. So just to get you moving, we’ll finish off with a bit of audience participation: Raise your hand if you had the correct answer for what MFD stands for? – That’s great!! Raise your hand if you had a more imaginative answer? – Well Done!! (If you come and see me at afternoon tea break and I think it’s a good answer I’ll give you a prize) Raise your hand if you’re only here to socialise at the conference dinner? - Aren’t we all. Thank you for listening, I hope you enjoy the rest of the conference. Are there any Questions….. Listen carefully to the questions people ask and if I can’t answer it don’t just say I don’t know. Say that you can look into it and email them back. If it’s a good question say – That’s a good question, but I’m not 100% sure of the answer – but I can find out and get back to you. Don’t waffle when answering, just answer and then stop. Lets people know you’ve finished answering. If it’s a technical question just say that is not my field, they could see Toshiba Australia website or I can follow it up
  • MFDs in Your Library

    1. 1. M y F luffy D og in Your Library By Michelle Coles
    2. 2. MFD <ul><li>What is it? </li></ul><ul><li>What does it do? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the benefits? </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Case example: UWA Library </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
    3. 3. MFD ? Daroch, S and Dider, M . (2009). UFOs busy over South Western Ontario skies. August 18, 2009 from
    4. 4. <ul><li>M </li></ul><ul><li>F </li></ul><ul><li>D </li></ul>ULTI UNCTION EVICE
    5. 5. MFD Copy Scan Fax Save to shared network drives Print
    6. 6. How do we use MFDs? <ul><li>Document Delivery (Docdel) service </li></ul><ul><li>Course Materials Online (CMO) </li></ul>
    7. 7. Before MFDs
    8. 8. After MFDs
    9. 9. Benefits of MFDs @ UWA Library <ul><li>Improved quality & reduced file size </li></ul>
    10. 10. Benefits ....... <ul><li>1 machine replaces many </li></ul>X
    11. 11. Combined workflow <ul><li>Before MFDs </li></ul><ul><li>After MFDs </li></ul>(2007). Revealed: Britain’s most terrifying road junction. August 18, 2009 from ( n.d). Modern roundabouts. August 18, 2009 from
    12. 12. <ul><li>“ Multi-talented MFDs: Improving digitised document delivery and workflows in an academic library” </li></ul><ul><li>Michelle Coles, Senior Library Officer </li></ul><ul><li>Document Delivery, UWA Library. </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>(08) 6488 2982 </li></ul>