Wednesday, October 17, 2007

WLA 2007: Putting Library Services Where Our Users Live and Work: Future of the OPAC

Putting Library Services Where Our Users Live and Work: Future of the OPAC
a presentation by Matt Goldner, Executive Director, Cooperative Collection Services, Columbus, OH
  • Market trend and user behavior / expectations
  • Leveraging library resources
  • "A Brief History of"
Marketing Trend #1:
Changing distribution model -- Wikipedia, Yahoo! Answers, Google scholar

Marketing Trend #2:
Changing nature of "content" -- Web 2.0, the wisdom of crowds, social networking

Marketing Trend #3:
Changing user expectations:
  • users expect customized information -- iGoogle
  • personally programmed devices
  • collaborating at a distance
How do users see libraries in this changing environment?
Perceptions of Libraries and Information Resources

The good news:
  • libraries are used and viewed favorably as an information source
  • what students value:
  • collections: authoritative content
  • services: research assistance
  • community: the library as a place
The bad news:
  • people think of libraries as just being about books
How can we summarize the cause and effect of this rapidly changing info marketplace and it relation to libraries?:

Then: users built their workflow around the library
Now: the library must build its service around the user workflow

Then: resources were scarce and attention was abundant
Now: attention is scarce and resources are abundant

How do we deliver out value -- collections, services and community...
to the user
on their network
at their point of need

How do we get into our users workflow?
user workflows -- not products or services -- should be the focal point
users care about the "jobs" they need to complete, not about products
solutions that users need will vary by task and change over time

How does this apply to the library?
We have to figure out how we can aggregate services around users:
discover resources, services, expertise
deliver needed items to users, where they are
share & collaborate expertise, recommendations, experiences

Benefits of web technologies to libraries:
exposes library collections and resources
utilizes existing delivery systems to seamless provide delivery options to suers
delivers needed items to users -- wherever they are
contribute and share in the search experience

How do we need to change our thinking and behavior?

A brief history of
bring the library to the user through the web (Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc.)
launch of as a destination site
creation of downloadable search box to place a WorldCat search on any web service at point of need

WorldCat Local
users have the same search expectations at the library
built and maintained on
elevates holdings of the library through relevancy ranking; local holdings rise to the top of the search results
configured to interoperate with existing local systems (ILS, library-provided resources, resource sharing services)
delivers access to WorldCat database local collections (30 million article citations, ebooks, etc.)
University of Washington the first pilot site of WorldCat Local
figures out the appropriate mode of delivery of items to the customer (item on shelf, button to place a local hold, place an I.L.L. request, etc.); seamlessly passes the item through the best mode of getting the item without trying to explain the rigamarole to the customer

social networking capability created in WorldCat through creation of lists

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