Library Technology Guides

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Library Technology Guides provides comprehensive and objective information surrounding the many different types of technology products and services used by libraries. It covers the organizations that develop and support library-oriented software and systems. The site offers extensive databases and document repositories to assist libraries as they consider new systems and is an essential resource for professionals in the field to stay current with new developments and trends. Relevent news items are posted daily on Twitter:

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Perspective and commentary by Marshall Breeding

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Perceptions 2015: An International Survey of Library Automation

Photo of Marshall Breeding author of GuidePosts
Selected Survey Findings: Top Performers
Polaris received highest scores among large public libraries for general satisfaction, ILS functionality, Print functionality, electronic functionality.
Apollo from Biblionix led in all categories for small public libraries.
Alma led for General Satisfaction, ILS functionality, electronic functionality and company loyalty among large academics; general functionality and electronic functionality among mid-sized academics; Alma received highest ratings from small academics on its effectiveness for electronic resource management.
Large public libraries rated support for Symphony highest. These libraries also gave the highest scores for company loyalty to SirsiDynix.
OCLC WorldShareWorldShare led in general satisfaction for mid-sized academic libraries.
Koha, independent of commercial support rated highest for small academic libraries.
Library.Solution from The Library Corporation received the highest scores among medium-sized public libraries for electronic resource functionality.
OPALS led in all categories for school libraries.
Spydus from Civica received the highest scores for ILS satisfaction among medium-sized public libraries as well as for company loyalty.

I have posted the results the ninth annual survey of data collected on how libraries rate their current integrated library system, the company involved, and the quality of customer support. Perceptions 2015: an international survey of library automation gives the general conclusions and presents all the statistical results derived from the survey. As usual, some of the most interesting and valuable information lies in the comments offered by responders.

"Libraries make major investments in strategic automation products, both during the initial implementation period and in annual fees paid for support, software maintenance, and other services. They depend on these products for efficient management of their daily operations and to provide access to their collections and services. This survey report allows libraries to benefit from the perceptions of their peers regarding the quality of automation systems and of the performance of the organizations involved in their development or support."

Just as I did for the previous editions survey, I created an interactive tool for viewing the statistical summaries and comments. The main tables in the article show statistics only for those products that had more than 15 survey responses. You can use the ILS Product Report to view the statistics on any of the products mentioned in the survey and to read the comments about that system, even if the number of responses did not meet the threshold. The comments that display have been edited to remove any text that identifies the individual or institution, preserving the anonymity of the responders. The narrative data in the comments largely corroborate the statistical responses and makes for interesting reading.

Feb 1, 2016 05:51:43
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Participate in the 2015 International Library Automation Perceptions Survey

Please respond to this year's International Library Automation Survey conducted through Library Technology Guides. The survey measures the levels of satisfaction that libraries have in their strategic technology products and their perceptions of the quality of service and support that they receive. The results of this survey provide valuable information to libraries as they formulate technology strategies and to vendors as they refine their support services and product development.

Reports that summarize the findings from each of the previous surveys are available:

2015 Library Automation Survey

I am now collecting responses for the 2015 edition of the survey. Please take this opportunity to register the perceptions of the library automation system used in your library, its vendor, and the quality of support delivered. The survey also probes at considerations for migrating to new systems, involvement in discovery products, and the level of interest in open source ILS. While the numeric rating scales support the statistical results of the study, the comments offered also provide interesting insights into the current state of library automation satisfaction.

Note: If you have responded to previous editions of the survey, please give your responses again this year. By responding to the survey each year, you help identify long-term trends in the changing perceptions of these companies and products.

As with the previous versions of the survey, only one response per library is allowed and any individual can respond only for one library. These restrictions ensure that no single organization or individual can skew the statistics. While all the individuals that work in a library may have their own opinions, please respond to the extent that you can from the general experiences of your library.

How to participate

The survey links each response to the listing for a library in the lib-web-cats directory. This connection provides the ability to correlate responses with the extensive library demographic data in libraries.org.

  1. Find your library in libraries.org:
    Find your library:
    (hint: for public libraries, enter city or county)
  2. Select and view the listing for your library
  3. Press the button
  4. Complete the form and write in your comments!

When viewing the entry for your library in lib-web-cats, please check for any incomplete or inaccurate information and let me know of any needed changes.

If your library isn't listed in lib-web-cats, please submit its information.


Nov 13, 2015 15:37:57
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Caveat and Credit

Library Technology Guides was created and is edited by Marshall Breeding. He is solely responsible for all content on this site, and for any errors it may contain. Please notify him if you find any errors or omissions. (off)

Industry News

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Full Automation News Report

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