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SpringyNews - Communities Reimagined

July 2020

Creating a Place for Everyone

We’re not sure when we'll have carefree gatherings again, but at Springshare we want to make things as easy as possible for people using technology to navigate virtual and in-person spaces. Over the past few months, we've rolled out new features big (have you heard about LibCal Seats?!) and small to help you with this, and we have even more coming down the pipeline. 

Today we rounded up new things and old favorites dedicated to bringing people together distantly in-person and creating online community spaces. We hope you find them helpful!

Reopening Safely with LibCal Seats

When we interact with other people and spaces, we -- and our patrons -- want to leave with our needs met and assurances that safety precautions are in place and being followed.

But navigating in-person areas is far from easy, and we heard from many customers that they needed a new tool to help:

  • enforce social distancing,
  • reduce contact with staff, and
  • adhere to capacity restrictions when they eventually reopened their buildings.

Moreover, it needed to be something patrons could easily navigate on their mobile devices.

Our LibCal team stepped up to the challenge and worked tirelessly to develop a new Spaces add-on module for seat reservations and building management. Seats was released in July, so you can start setting it up today!

Booking a Seat

Seats is built right into Spaces, so users can book either entire Spaces (meeting rooms) or Seats within a Space (lounge chair in the reading room). It also means LibCal admins can customize Seat availability, start and end times, reservation durations, and booking restrictions -- just like with Spaces.

Patrons can use our brand new mobile-first booking page to reserve seats and optionally check-in/out with a unique booking code (to help staff schedule get real-time stats and schedule cleanings) via QR code, email link, booking page, or staff entry.

Managing Seats on the admin-side

LibCal admins can add Seats to their Spaces individually or in bulk, along with a description, image, and directions. By toggling them active and inactive, they can ensure only 25%, 50% or 75% of their total Seats can be booked.

July's release also added a new layer of Spaces' hierarchy - Zones - and a new utilization dashboard that allows staff to easily see which Spaces and Seats are currently being used and how much capacity is being used. 

We're already working on our first round of improvements based on customer feedback, which you can find on the Updates page!

For more details, take a look at our demo in the above video and read about a library example

Let us know if you'd like more information! 

Redefining In-Person Interactions

Our lives look different than they did before. We have to manage our personal space carefully. Our in-person interactions are short and measured when they happen. So we need to find new ways to communicate and reach others. It helps if we feel a little more connected to one another, too, and a short wave or greeting can make all the difference. 

While we can't call someone over or tap them on the shoulder with a question, LibAnswers and LibCal customers have tools already at their disposal to easily connect and answer them! Check out a few of them in the gallery box below.

LibAnswers: Create automatic SMS replies in your LibAnswers queue. When someone texts using a keyword term, your library can respond with hours, pickup info, contact details, and more.

LibCal: Use Spaces for library holds pickup! We have a ton of advice on how to set this up, along with a recorded video session, on our training site

LibCal: Take advantage of Spaces' new hierarchy level - Zones. It allows you to manage and monitor different areas of your library.