Award Report – Improve Library Staff Online Workflow
This project helps the library staff utilize our online resources more efficiently and in so doing improve customer services.
The library staff has been working very hard this past year to advance library services to our patrons. Our library has experienced an increase in users and especially the number of nurses using the library, as well as administration, beyond the usual group of clinical staff, residents and medical students. We have succeeded in updating and expanding library computer access for our patrons thanks to the NN/LM technology grant last year; we have increased our library access to knowledge-based databases; extended library hours; updated our print/electronic book collection; all of these innovations to improve library services. As a result of our efforts library user ship has increased; with this increase, demand for electronic dissemination of knowledge –based literature has also increased. During this past year we have experienced a dramatic rise in Interlibrary Loan requests due to a greater number of literature searches being done by our patrons as well as searches being done by library staff for our patrons. We also are experiencing a rise as a Docline lender. The dissemination of literature, to our patrons as well as to Docline libraries, by electronic means scanning, emailing and faxing has risen. All library work is done online, cataloging, serial control, circulation, literature searching and document retrieval, in addition to hospital systems, purchasing, environmental/engineering requests and e-mail.
We came to the realization that the staff did not have computer equipment equivalent to the task at hand. Our staff experienced a good deal of frustration waiting for a PDF file to download or have the screen freeze in the middle of a search. It was at this point I knew we had to upgrade our equipment and began the application process for the NN/LM technology grant. In starting this project we sought recommendations from our HIS department for equipment that will best serve our needs as well as discussions with administration to financially support our project beyond the grant to cover all our costs. The HIS dept. presented us with a description/quotation for computer, printer and fax upgrades, which we used in out grant application.
The awarding of the NN/LM grant this year enabled us to purchase, for the library staff, faster, higher tech computers, printers and a new fax machine in order to better acquire and disseminate the information requested by our patrons/customers. The upgrade put two new PC’s at the front desk that can handle all tasks more efficiently, the library staff PC’s are networked in order to accommodate any work overflow. So while one PC may be occupied with Docline, document retrieval, scanning and dissemination, the other is available for circulation, serial control and our online catalog. All library computers have access to our online browse catalog. Our access and use of current systems has improved with better, faster computers. The color printer is being used to provide library promotional information, regarding new resources and services as they become available to our patrons. Through observation, our time spent waiting for downloads has decreased, as has the frustration of staff. We will continue to monitor our staff workflow.
Thank you to NN/LM for supporting our library efforts.
Laraine Tursi, Director
Harold Fink Memorial Hospital
Coney Island Hospital
October 7, 2008