Baldwin Wallace University
Update workflows and fill requests faster
"All the new smart fulfillment features work together for a superior experience for our library users and a more effective use of our ILL staff’s time.”
Head of Access Services and Interlibrary Loan, Ritter Library
When Laura D’Amato, Head of Access Services and Interlibrary Loan, joined Baldwin Wallace University’s Ritter Library in 2017, she realized their interlibrary loan (ILL) workflows had been the same for a long time. Staff were even handwriting requests in notebooks to track them. She also discovered the library had not taken advantage of settings like constant data and custom holdings groups and features such as ILL Fee Management (IFM) and, more recently, smart fulfillment capabilities. So, when the library closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, she started evaluating small, impactful changes.
Borrowing automations save time and effort
Leveraging OCLC training and knowledge about new features, Laura set up four borrowing automations in WorldShare ILL: two for copies and two for physical items. As a result, her ILL team no longer had to look at supplier lists for costs, days to supply, and geographic location—saving considerable time and effort. Because of her dedication to efficiency, the library now has an overall better fill rate and turnaround times have improved. For requests that went through automation, borrowing turnaround times for copies were reduced by 20 hours and physical items were reduced by two days. And in the past year, 85% of copy requests and 78% of loan requests required minimal or no staff intervention due to automation.
Real-time availability helps staff respond faster
Additionally, now that real-time availability has been implemented for the Ritter Library, Laura said, “It’s helpful that when I look at our Can You Supply? queue, I know the requests won’t be for checked-out items.” She said that she’s no longer spending time looking at requests for physical items she can’t lend because they’re checked out. Instead, those requests are automatically moved on to the next supplier.
“Since we have more time—thanks to real-time availability and automated request manager—we now respond to copy requests sooner. This resulted in us being invited to participate in Express, and it benefits our library users because their copy requests are processed even quicker.”
Express digital delivery program improves speed
Ritter Library has participated in the Express digital delivery program from the program’s launch. “Since we have more time—thanks to real-time availability and automated request manager—we now respond to copy requests sooner. This resulted in us being invited to participate in Express, and it benefits our library users because their copy requests are processed even quicker.” The overall results are phenomenal. Users now get copy requests delivered 50% faster. Plus, in the first four months of the academic year, 96% of their copy requests were filled by Express libraries, with 89% of those filled via automation.
Laura said the team’s efforts resulted in many positive benefits. Library users have a better experience, the staff uses their time more effectively, and they now report better fill rates and turnaround times.
Services used by Baldwin Wallace University
- Berea, Ohio, United States
- Total enrollment = 3,230 (Fall 2022)
- Three campus libraries: Ritter Library, Jones Music Library (JML), and the Riemenschneider Bach Institute
- The oldest book in Ritter Library is a non-circulating, complete Vulgate Bible from the Cambrom Abbey, dating from 1220 to 1235
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