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Wednesday, November 4 • 6:00pm - 6:45pm
Back to the Future: Re-Examining the Need for Shelf-Ready Processes in the E-Book Environment

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Objective: Present the methodology, data, and findings of a study Texas Woman’s University Libraries conducted on its shelf-ready and in-house copy cataloging workflow.

Texas Woman’s University Libraries went shelf-ready with Baker and Taylor in 2013 in order to save staff time and money processing firm order print books. We assumed that routine copy cataloging took up a large portion of staff time and was not cost effective. By receiving the bulk of our firm order books “shelf-ready,” cataloging staff would be free to do other tasks and projects.

Questions were raised as we prepared to expand to another vendor: Is the quality of the cataloging and physical processing acceptable? How many and what sort of changes are staff needing to do with these books? How many days from order placement until the item is available? What is the true per book cost? Do we purchase enough print books that outsourcing still makes sense? What other efficiencies or technologies could we capitalize on? In light of these questions, we wanted to compare the two workflows - in-house copy cataloging and shelf-ready before making any additional outsourcing commitments. A two month study tracked all print books received from order to shelf; and a complete cost analysis of the entire acquisitions and cataloging processes was done.

Attendees will learn how one small library rec-examined what has become a common library practice in light of new technologies and reinstate a traditional workflow in order to move to the future.

avatar for Susan Martin

Susan Martin

Head, Acquisitions Services, University of Chicago Library

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