End of project survey – current m-library initiatives

This is part of a series of blog posts on the end of project fact finding survey.

In the first fact finding survey, we discovered a number of different areas libraries were working on. Using the broad categories from the results of the first survey, we used the end of project survey as an opportunity to see which were most popular. The results are shown below:

Current m-library services offered

Current m-library services offered

Those who selected ‘other’ included additional explanation on the categories selected as well as the following areas:

  • Social media (Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare)
  • Location of free PCs in library
  • Status of printers in library
  • Mobile discovery tool
  • SMS reference service
  • Access to mobile content (e.g. ebooks, audiobooks, music)
  • Mobile e-learning website or VLE (Virtual Learning Environment)
  • Mobile chat (enquiry service)
  • Newswire from news agencies
  • Teaching/instruction on mobile devices
  • SMS to send bibliographic data from website to phone
  • Mobile LibGuides

When asked if they were currently involved in any m-library iniative projects, 61% of survey respondents said yes. In order of popularity, areas which were currently being worked on were as follows:

  1. Mobile access to resources
  2. Mobile apps (for library or wider organisation)
  3. Mobile website
  4. Mobile catalogue
  5. Using mobile devices to support roving reference
  6. QR codes
  7. SMS
  8. Loaning mobile devices
  9. Augmented reality
  10. Social media

The results from these two section of the survey suggest that perhaps QR codes are already well used in libraries, and are therefore not a main priority for further development in many libraries (though are still being developed in others). Mobile catalogue is also available for a number libraries, but this is still being added for other libraries. Mobile access to resources is a main priority for many libraries in terms of current projects and initiatives, as shown by a sample of comments:

Ensuring all online services are mobile-friendly

Developing a web page which details mobile versions of information resources.

We’re just finishing a project to address the challenges involved in providing mobile access to eresources through a discovery tool

I have asked our systems team to promote the implementation of a mobile version of our discovery service for the coming academic year

The results also suggest that more libraries are looking at utilising mobile devices to support roving reference (i.e. staff using tablet computers to help users at the point of need) and also loaning mobile devices (primarily Kindles or iPads).

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