Like many institutions, the staff at Mount Mercy University's Busse Library was supporting old library management software (15+ years old!) that entailed lots of work-arounds for staff. Worse, it required end users to locate e-resources across a confusing set of online sites, services and searches. This made it hard for students and faculty to find the full-text articles that they needed from the library's 25 electronic databases. The library staff spent its time and budget carefully, but that effort was lost behind outdated, inefficient systems.
In the words of Marilyn Murphy, Director of Library Services, "We didn't have the resources to administer a new system, and we didn't want to buy a new server. We wanted a hosted or shared system that would allow us to stay within budget—but most of all, we wanted a solution to improve our services for our students."
After the first 15 months of use, Marilyn reported that results with WorldShare® Management Services were a huge success: the library experienced a 25% increase in downloads of full-text articles. Students now search all databases from a single search box to find full-text articles and electronic resources such as Google Books, Internet Archive, HathiTrust and more.
"Students are discovering more resources, and they are making better use of our existing databases," Marilyn said. "It's also saving staff time because we aren't devoting time to system administration anymore. We're not duplicating effort by adding holdings to both a local catalog and WorldCat—we just do it once and we're done. And we're saving time on serials check-in functions in WorldShare Management Services as compared to our old system."
But the best thing? With the time saved, library staff have been able to inventory their entire collection, remove outdated records (which took half the time it did previously) and create LibGuides for all of the classes in the university learning system. "With WorldShare Management Services' streamlined workflows and Web-based functionality," Marilyn said, "we now have the time and flexibility to enhance student services wherever we are."