Libraries have always provided a “books-on-phone” service that allowed sick, elderly and disabled people to access library materials without leaving home. The timing of the pandemic has led to increased interest in this service. How does this relate to happiness levels? We hasten to explain! Research conducted by Kelton Global in 13 countries among 27,000 respondents found that people who read at least once a week are happier in life (71%) than those who read less often or not at all (55%). Reading provides a basis for building a sense of happiness in life, and is also an expression of self-care. So by providing an opportunity to interact with literature, librarians bring happiness to the homes.
Of course, the alternative is to buy books, but this involves an outlay. Besides, we live in an era of growing popularity of the sharing economy. Awareness of limited resources and producer-driven consumerism mean that readers often choose the library for ethical reasons.
How can the PROLIB library system help librarians handle remote loans?
Currently the library can carry out its activities based on modern solutions, such as e-service Remote Lending, available in the PROLIB system. It has benefits for both Readers and Librarians. And here are some of them:
- Possibility of arranging the receipt of orders for 24 hours. This is an innovation compared to phone pickups, where setting up a pickup time had to be done during library hours. It is not possible to arrange collection of the order on Saturdays and Sundays or public holidays.
- Ability to restrict the service to selected reader statuses. It is the system that enables or disables the service. The librarian is relieved of the unpleasant duty of refusing service to the reader.
- Possibility of blocking the service if the reader is in arrears with returning already borrowed documents or in arrears with charged fees. In PROLIB INTEGRO, after logging in to an account, an information is displayed that the service is blocked.
- Possibility of various types of financing for order delivery:
(a) at no cost to the reader, i. e. at the expense of the library,
b) payment after the completion of the order service,
(c) payment before the service of the order is provided.
- The date the document is returned to the library is automatically extended by the time taken to deliver the order.
- The functionality has an option to promote the fulfillment of shipping orders. for example, the reader receives the first order free of charge and pays for subsequent orders.
- Different ways to deliver your order to the reader:
(b) courier companies,
c) InPost – integration of the PROLIB system with parcel machines of this company.
- Current information about the status of the order – automatic sending of e-mails, notifications and SMS. With a book on the phone, this part of the service delivery is often overlooked.
Remote lending of library materials with home delivery in PROLIB INTEGRO has already got practical applications! Pedagogical libraries in the Podkarpackie voivodeship use this e-service in their work. We encourage you to watch a video presenting the solution.
You can also read about the Kelton Global study mentioned above here.