Springshare had the privilege of learning about the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore Library from Librarian, Dr. K. Rama Patnaik Ph.D. who shared that she first learned about Springshare while on a trip visiting libraries in Singapore in 2010. She chanced upon a few subject librarians using LibGuides for building subject guides. Dr. Patnaik reveals that two years later,
We are the first ones who started using Springshare for creating guides in India in 2012.
Dr. Patnaik shares a little library history with us chronicling how they came to need LibGuides CMS.
They began by building guides in LibGuides but because they wanted more flexibility with customization, they upgraded to LibGuides CMS for its enhanced features. The IIMB Library has 139 published LibGuides today.
Dr. Patnaik's team at the IIMB Library hit the ground running. When discussing the learning curve, she recalled that,
Our team had no prior exposure to LibGuides. Fortunately, I have a team who learned by watching training videos and webinars to learn about various modules of Springshare products. The support team of Springshare is customer friendly and promptly responded to the queries by our staff.
The LibGuides CMS system allows them to build hundreds of guides, a fraction of which they keep unpublished, and they created Groups like Library Orientation and Resources to further organize their content. More significantly, the official IIMB Library website is hosted via LibGuides CMS. Naturally, it's the most popular guide. Dr. Patnaik also reports that they've "...started experimenting with blogs." Since Statistics are an integral feature, she noted that,
We compile various types of statistics for all our transactions in the library. The page views and visits help to be proactive in developing similar guides.
The usage stats reveal the popularity of LibGuides. We also get feedback through emails and in person.
Providing amazing instruction, spaces, equipment, and more is the goal of any modern library. But helping patrons find and book these rooms, ensuring library users can browse through upcoming events, and making the process of reserving devices easy -- is the aim of LibCal. Just one year ago, the IIMB Library brought LibCal into the fold to help because Dr. Patnaik related that they,
...renovated the interiors of our library recently, and there are now discussion rooms, a digital wall, and other facilities and resources which are going to be widely used by the students. We also have a training calendar for orientation to library databases. We found LibCal perfectly fitting into our requirements. Now discussion rooms, Kindles, access to AV content and specific network resources are open for reservations, and LibCal facilitates that requirement.
The librarians are able to post pictures of the discussion rooms, their meeting room, and the digital wall along with details for the capacities and locations. For their event management, the IIMB Library has taken advantage of the registration feature and have carefully defined Categories like Database Training, Meetings, etc. and have set up Audience types like Academic Staff, Student, etc. so that patrons can efficiently find events that are targeted toward them.
Since 2017, the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore Library has been using LibInsight for their data management. To move away from the complexities presented by their previous solution, they tested and chose LibInsight and now have 110 datasets in their system with more than 11,000 records. Dr. Patnaik recounted that,
We were mostly concerned about the usage of e-resources, and getting budgetary support was a huge challenge to retain our subscriptions. Secondly the usage of library transactions, especially with print books and footfalls, was frequently in demand to assess the impact and utility of library resources and services.
Examining the datasets they work with most, Dr. Patnaik shares that,
The IIMB Library team is new to the LibAnswers Platform but just like all their other tools, they were quick to action implementing and then prioritizing the creation of FAQs. LibAnswers allows libraries to answer questions anytime and anywhere. To take your customer service game up a notch, strategize and set up a thorough FAQ to meet your patron's needs. Imagine your users seeing a number of questions they had intended to ask and even some that hadn't yet occurred to them! It's impressive and lets patrons know that you are proactive and know what matters to them. The IIMB library has FAQs like:
Increase your interactions by letting your patrons know you invite questions. The IIMB Library team designed a "Contact Us" box with a visual that says "Submit Your Question Here", which links to the LibAnswers question form. This encourages engagement.
The IIMB Library embeds ways to access LibCal and LibAnswers on their library website to reduce friction. It's vital to the team to ensure patrons have a good experience finding what they need efficiently.
The diligent team at the IIMB believes that a library that advances with technology is a great benefit to the staff, the faculty, students and the larger community they serve. Dr. Patnaik reported that,
We are one of the first libraries in India to use technology extensively for all our activities. It is completely changing the way we worked earlier.
She reflected on their choice of tools, saying,
We came across some open source solutions but found Springshare most suited to us as it keeps updating and improvising its products. I do not have to dedicate workforce to experiment with open source solutions especially when it comes to extension of services to our user community.
Because they have time zone challenges, the IIMB Library staff relies heavily on the extensive Springshare help documentation. Dr. Patnaik said, "The tutorials and webinars are great tools to get awareness and skills to use Springshare products." The results are outstanding. She points out that,
The library committee and administration are very supportive of any new endeavors undertaken by the library. And subject and orientation guides are received extremely well.
This year we are going to embed brief video content into our guides, as suggested by some of our faculty.
The IIMB Library currently uses LibStaffer for scheduling and managing shifts and duties. They also have plans to explore the use of Springshare tools for internal purposes like professional development. The year 2020 is going to be an exciting time for this library and its patrons. It's thrilling to see a team enthusiastically dive into learning how to use our tools -- so they can swiftly pivot to helping the communities they serve.