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Co-ordination still lacking between library and council websites

Council library book renewal services are still ‘marred’ by poorly integrated third party library systems, causing confusion for many users, according to a new survey.

Better Connected reviewers using online library services found that areas which had improved since 2014 included being accessible from a Google search, providing a ‘Forgotten your password/PIN’ link and being directly linked from the home page.

However, the percentage of users answering ‘Yes’ to the question: ‘Were all the relevant pieces of information/pages for this task linked together to make a smooth, coherent journey’? had declined, from 49% in 2014 to 34% in 2016.

A reviewer of one site said: “Taking the ‘renew library books’ link from the main council immediately changes the site ‘look and feel’, confusing the user.”

Overall, 45% of users said online library services were good or very good.

Socitm stated that East Sussex, North Lincolnshire, Staffordshire, Surrey, Warwickshire, West Sussex and the East Riding of Yorkshire were particularly recommended for their sites.

Recently, Ciara Eastell, president of the Society of Chief Librarians (SCL), wrote for PSE about the importance of improving the digital infrastructure of libraries.

Discussing recommendations made in the recent ‘Essential Digital Infrastructure for Public Libraries in England’ report, Eastell said there is a need for a single digital presence for public libraries.


Peter.Milton@Surreycc.Gov.Uk   18/02/2016 at 12:15

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