Themes In Library Technologies (Calendaring and Events Tools)

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LSC 742: Library Automation and Project Management - Graduate class presentation.
The Catholic University of America, Washington DC - Spring 2009

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Themes In Library Technologies (Calendaring and Events Tools)

  1. 1. Themes in Library Technologies Calendaring and Events Tools in Libraries PPI (Please Publicize It) Technologies for the Modern Library By Albert Franklin Bakasara Kazooba
  2. 2. Research Methods • Observation - First hand experience working with the calendaring and events software/tools • Statistics • RSS feeds – Google Reader • Surveys – Online (surveymonkey.com) • Vendor websites – www.evancedsolutions.com
  3. 3. Introduction • The old adage question; “if a tree falls in the forest and there is no one to hear it fall, does it make a sound?” Well, in this fast-paced information environment, the answer may as well be a resounding no! Yes, you have taken the time to organize the children’s program, staff workshop, team meeting, social event, etc, but if it is not publicized, the effort is as good as wasted!
  4. 4. What they are! • These are technology tools used by libraries to improve visibility and accessibility to library events/services. Overall, each of these tools offers a unique way to improve service accessibility to library customers – both internal and external.
  5. 5. Common Features Some of the common features of these tools include – but are not limited to: • Interactivity – these tools allow customers to interact with the library administrators. For example, most room reservation and event registration systems allow users to submit their individual requests and receive instant feedback. • User-friendly – most of them are built on easy to use and familiar interfaces, like windows - with many of the same features that customers are already accustomed to. • Cost-effectiveness – The systems pay for themselves by generating income and saving manpower hours. • Equipment, Materials, and Cost tracking – These tools also give administrators the ability to track equipment and materials – saving time and money in the process. The three mention in this project, also have record and calculate costs. • Reports – They generate easy to use records/statistics for administrators that are used to justify funding.
  6. 6. Library Meeting Room Reservation Systems There are so many calendar tools used to schedule and publicize all sorts of functions in libraries. For this assignment, I have defined three types in this paper, but mainly focused on one category – library meeting room reservation systems.
  7. 7. Evanced Room Reserve System • Evanced Room Reserve System is a product of Evanced Solutions • The company also has other library oriented products like Summer Reader and the Evanced Events Registration System
  8. 8. Major Aspects • Interactive – the system allows customers to submit their individual requests and receive instant feedback. • User-friendly - its built on a windows based interface with many of the same features that customers are already used to. • Cost-effective – the system pays for itself in saved manpower hours, record accessibility, and reports accessibility.
  9. 9. Evanced Events Registration System • This is another online-based product from Evanced Solutions that is commonly used by libraries to schedule training, community outreach events. Like its sister product above it has the same interactivity and usability features.
  10. 10. Compliance Suite’s Training Management • This is complete training management system that combines the student registration with human resource office and calendar functions. Unlike the e-vanced products, this software doesn’t have a SAAS component – but it can be installed on the library system’s internal network/intranet.
  11. 11. Main Components • Schedule – the scheduling component of this software allows administrators to manage course particulars like workshop titles, trainers’ names and qualifications, and dates and times. • Employee – under employee category, administrators access a summary of the employees training history, which department they’re stationed and any other administrative actions. • Desktop/Calendar – In addition to functioning as a regular scheduling calendar, the calendar interface of this software also integrates links allow for easy navigation between the databases. • Reports – the software provides an extensive list of reports for managers to easily access – and if they so choose, they can customize them, or even create their own reports.
  12. 12. How they fit the modern library All the mentioned software/tools (and numerous others out there) have basic common functionalities that make them appealing to the modern library. The major ones being – • Saving resources (time and money), • Helping to decentralize the library information technology (IT) functions, • Improving customer service, and assembling accurate records for administrat.
  13. 13. Implementing these tools • Stakeholder buy-in – to avoid resistance to change and to provide for an easy transition for older users • Training – developing a unique strategy and time frame for users. Ideally, they should be given time to practice with the tool before full implementation • Evaluation – Matrixes should be developed early to provide measurement points for benefits
  14. 14. Observations • The tools have improved customer service • Meeting room usage has almost doubled • The tools have saved the library system resources (both time and money) • The reservation system had paid for itself in less than six months!
  15. 15. The Usage Numbers The jump in the room reservation numbers at the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System after the switch to the evanced room reservation system. Mainly, because customers can now reserve rooms online even when the library is closed!
  16. 16. Revenue Comparison Chart Similarly, revenue doubled in the first three months of 2009 – compared to the same months at the beginning of 2008 2000 JAN 1340 6600 FEB 2900 MAR 3800 1650 APR MAY JUN JUL AUG 2008 Revenues 2009 Revenues SEP OCT NOV DEC
  17. 17. Summary The ability of libraries to adapt to new and emerging technologies will be the key for their survival as relevant players in the information age. But as we have shown, the transition doesn’t need to be painful. In fact the cost-cutting, efficiency, and improved customer services are enough incentives for libraries to move ahead of the curve. Yes, there are many considerations regarding system compatibility, staff training, and even some resistance from an aging librarian and customer base – not to mention the budgetary constraints; but comparing to the cost we’re already paying, a few dollars can yield unimaginable results!
  18. 18. Resources Used: • StatThe Prince George’s County Memorial Library System –www.pgcmls.info • The Evanced Solutions website - www.evancedsolutions.com • Surveys www.surveymonkey.com • The Maryland Education Resources for Library (Merlin) site - www.merlin.lib.md.us • *The Google Reeder (RSS) feeds (most of them (on this particular subject were blog commentaries were blog commentaries with no clears citable articles.
  19. 19. Thank you • Questions?

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