Background Interest in RFID began in 2001 Deal with 3M to showcase RFID at IFLA Local pilot site – big and busy enough to fully investigate the new technology Team of IT staff on site
Background Decision was made to target 80K item short-loan collection Self contained 4% of stock / around 50% of transactions Improve access to some material Completely self-service Improved stock maintenance
Challenges and Solutions April / May 2006 – 2 external agency staff worked for 6 weeks to tag stock Estimate – 250 books per hour Actual – 310 books per hour We now RFID tag all short loan stock ourselves, and can see how easy it is The installation of all 3M equipment went according to schedule
Challenges and Solutions First major snag – our idiosyncratic classification system Library system is unable to produce a shelfmark order index 3M found an IT consultant to work on the problem Produced a translation program
From Theory to Service Delivery New fully open-access collection Core of 78,000 books Up to 82,000 in response to demand Loan periods of 1 week, 24h, and 4h Security gates – magnetic Belt and braces approach!
From Theory to Service Delivery 2 self-issue units enough? Another on standby – not needed Users rarely waited longer than 20 seconds Appointed a ‘problem solver’ Main complaint was loss of booking system (Not an RFID issue) Emphasis moved to additional copies or digitised material
The Result – Error Checking DLA started to uncover catalogue errors straight away As in-depth as an old-fashioned stock inspection! Monitoring revealed an 11% error rate Now use DLA to check for a range of errors at once
The Result – Self Issue Assistance was offered at start of term Loans increased 20% to 378,000 91% of first time issues were self-service transactions Between new RFID self-issue and existing barcode self-issue, 75% of loans were completely self-service
The Result – Self Issue Queue time at self-issue November: median of 8 seconds, average of 19 seconds, 93% queued less than 1 minute April: median of 0 seconds, average of 4 seconds, 100% served within 1 minute Reshelving time lapse November: only 32% reshelved within first hour April: 90% reshelved within the hour, 38% within the half hour
The Result – Book Issues First year – 20% rise in SLC issues 14% rise in 1 week items 819% rise in 24 hour items 17% decrease in 4 hour items Longer loan periods More available = more popular Focus on additional copies rather than shorter loan periods
Staff Feedback DLA makes shelf checking more bearable! Increased accuracy is “very satisfying” DLA is light, easy to use, reduces physical activity Staff will now spend longer shelf-checking Improved customer relations But… DLA can miss small items
Student Feedback Loss of booking facility (not RFID’s fault!) LibQUAL survey positives Not having to queue for 4 hour loans Longer access Faster service at peak times Browsing can reveal longer loan periods System very easy to use
Where are we now? 3.5% drop in overall transactions in last year – still 1.5M transactions Percentage of loans from SLC still around 50% of total 2006/07 – 91% self issue in SLC 2007/08 – up slightly to 93% Total self-service checkouts: 70% in 06/07 74% in 07/08 75% in 02/03?!
Where are we now? Introduction of self-return 2006/07 – 81% self-return 2007/08 – 83% self-return Equates to around 42% overall returns Frees up a lot of staff time More off-desk tasks Moves to background depts
Any questions… Feel free to get in touch Tours? Contact Neil Carey: firstname.lastname@example.org
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