Our collection is over 13,000 and we have several thousand more waiting to
be processed that we just can't get on top of. We could expand the library
by a third or so if we had a more efficient system. We get 100-200 returns a
week about half of which have been taken out. About 15-20% of borrowings
aren't returned but we get a similar number of donations. So that's a lot of
the work, typing catalogue cards and pulling them when they don't come back
then retyping them when they're donated again. And figuring out what's
overdue. We type the same books over and over again and yet never have db of
what we've got.
Our librarian tend to agree that it's not worth automating given all the
difficulties and she may be right. I am very used to using computers for
this sort of work and it seems kind of crazy how much time we spend on card
handling. Several of the long-term volunteers are very frustrated at the
lack of progress. I suppose even if I look into it and we make an informed
decision against it, that's progress of a kind!
On 26 September 2011 09:50, Kyle Banerjee <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> On Sun, Sep 25, 2011 at 3:14 PM, rowan eisner <[log in to unmask]>
> > Ok, I tried to sign up for WSSL and you have to be in US. Also, if it
> > cost 'a cup of coffee a day' am I right that would be at least $700 a
> > That's our entire annual budget. So probably only for first world
> > anyway. And you're meant to have one or two full-time staff which we
> > have. Still, I'll email them and see what they say. There are probably
> > 1000s
> > of 3rd world libraries doing everything manually still and if there are
> > economies of scale we may be able to afford it.
> How big are your collections, and roughly how many circulations do you do?
> My concern would be that since you lack staff and resources, you'd have
> real headaches if you became dependent on a system and something went wrong
> or whoever sets things up goes away.
> A traditional system with checkout cards actually works quite well and will
> let you see what you own, what is out, and who has it if it should have
> returned. When you add up the time for keeping all the info in the system
> to date, maintaining the system, teaching people how to use it, and dealing
> with changes in technology you may not come out ahead with automation.
> Kyle Banerjee
> Digital Services Program Manager
> Orbis Cascade Alliance
> [log in to unmask] / 503.877.9773