Archive for July 28, 2015

Watch ALA 2015 Springy Presentations By Guest Flash Presenters!

Whether you attended ALA in San Francisco, or not, you can still watch (and rewatch!) guest presenter’s Jessie Riggins (TBLC), Cathay Keough (Delaware Libraries), Aaron Dobbs (Shippensburg University), and Louise Hilton with Andrew Tadman (EBPRL) presenting on their use of Springy Tools!

Jessie Riggins

Jessie Riggins

Using LibAnswers for Statewide Ask-A-Librarian Services

Jessie Riggins – Tampa Bay Library Consortium

Jessie Riggins is the Member Services Coordinator for the Tampa Bay Library Consortium. Jessie manages the statewide virtual reference program for the State of Florida, Ask A Librarian. The program consists of 130 public, academic, special and k-12 libraries. The live Chat and SMS service is open 84 hours a week, and offers 24/7 email.

>> Watch Now (11min 31sec)


Cathay Keough

Cathay Keough

Cathay Keough – Delaware Division of Libraries

Delaware Division of Libraries was the first consortium to use LibAnswers to power their statewide reference.
Hear from Cathay on why they made the switch and how Delaware Division of Libraries reference teams are loving LibAnswers.

>> Watch Now (11min 10sec)


Using LibGuides @ East Baton Rouge Parish Library

Louise Hilton & Andrew Tadman – LibGuides @EBPL

East Baton Rouge Parish Library

East Baton Rouge Parish Library

EBRPL is the largest library system in Louisiana, covering the capital city of Baton Rouge and the surrounding parish. We have nearly 350,000 card holders, 14 branches, and last year we circulated 2.5 million items. EBPL has 135 active LibGuides and last year they received nearly 150,000 LibGuide views. The largest LibGuide successes have been using them as ‘how to guides’ for Overdrive, and as a focal point for community programs such as out ‘One Book/One Community’ and for their Maker resources and programming.

>> Watch Now (7min 27sec)

 

LibAnswers: Not just for Library Answers @Shippensburg University

Aarron Dobbs – LibAnswers @Shippensburg University

Aaron Dobbs

Aaron Dobbs

Do you ever get questions about non-library topics? Ship Library sure does. They reached out to offices around campus and asked them what question they most commonly (and most easily/straightforwardly) answered. They worked out a process to gather, answer, and update the questions commonly asked across campus – and, because they’re librarians, they classified the heck out of the Q&A pairs and linked to the webpages which provide more information.

>> Watch Now (7min 14sec)

LibAnswers 2.5 Update Coming Friday

The summer of updates continues! The LibAnswers 2.5 update is coming on Friday, July 24th at 7:30am EDT. There will be no downtime for the overall LibAnswers system, with the exception of a minute or two of downtime for users currently logged in to LibChat. Here’s what’s on deck:

LibAnswers Updates

  • Updated Dashboard Views – We’re making a few adjustments to the Dashboard ticket view pages to make them easier to scan for key information on each ticket. Now it’s easier to scan the page for patron name/email, current status, and who last replied (so you know who’s waiting on a response).
  • Image Previews in Tickets – We’re adding an onscreen preview for submitted image files (gif, jpeg, png, etc.). When patrons send you image files in LibChat and LibAnswers, you’ll see the image in a little popup window instead of downloading the file, so you’ll never have to download an email signature or social networking icon again. 🙂
  • RefAnalytics Completion Prompts – Want to make doubly sure librarians fill out key Reference Analytics metrics when answering tickets and chats? We’re adding a new administrative setting to remind your LibAnswers staffers to fill out the Reference Analytics form. Admins will head to Admin > System Settings > General and scroll to the new RefAnalytics settings.

LibChat Updates

  • Emoticons – We’re adding support for basic smiley chat images, making it that much easier to let folks know how you feel. 🙂 Click on the smile image in the chat widget pane to see which emoticons are supported, and add to your live chats using menu-selection or keyboard entry.
  • Updated Canned Message UI – We’re updating the selection menu in the chat pane for canned messages, so it’s easier to scan and quickly choose the right message.
  • Wait Time Statistics – We’re adding a new stats report to show you how long, on average, your chat patrons are waiting before their chat is answered. You’ll see this metric integrated in various chat reports, and you’ll also see individual wait times in each chat transcript.

New in LibGuides – OAI-PMH Support

We’re very excited to check off another frequently-requested item off our development to-do list – LibGuides now offers full OAI-PMH support.

Need a refresher on OAI-PMH? To borrow from the official project site:

The Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting is a low-barrier mechanism for repository interoperability. Data Providers are repositories that expose structured metadata via OAI-PMH. Service Providers then make OAI-PMH service requests to harvest that metadata. OAI-PMH is a set of six verbs or services that are invoked within HTTP.

Basically, with the full OAI-PMH support in LibGuides it is now even easier to index and show results from your guides alongside all of your library resources – in your catalog, discovery layer, federated search system, institutional repository, you name it – if it supports OAI-PMH you can index LibGuides in it, too. We’ve been psyched to see folks creating more and more key library content – everything from course and subject guides to important documentation to entire library websites – in LibGuides. With OAI-PMH support in LibGuides your patrons can find your LibGuides content no matter where they begin their search. Imagine it – students searching for assignment help in your federated search engine find the LibGuide for their course – instruction for the win! A patron searching for library policies from the catalog discovers your About the Library guide – point of need help, kaboom! The guides you create are integrated right along all of your other library content – it’s indexing made easy. 🙂

On the LibGuides side, our OAI-PMH gateway retrieves the standard set of DC metadata tags for each guide in your system. These tags are tied to the descriptive information about your guide – guide title becomes a dc:title tag, guide description becomes dc:description, etc. To be clear, this isn’t a full text index of your guide content, though we may support this in the future if there’s widespread interest.

Ready to get started? Admins, head to Tools > Data Exports and click Get OAI Base URL to find the unique base URL for your LibGuides site. You’ll use this base URL in combination with the 6 standard OAI-PMH requests to generate search-indexer-friendly XML files.

Delaware Libraries Using LibAnswers for Statewide Reference

AskALibrarian DelawareWith more than 30 public, academic, and special libraries participating statewide, Ask a Librarian Delaware has been servicing Delawareans since 2003. In 2014 alone, they answered 3,000 chat questions and an additional 3,000 email questions roughly equating to 500 questions answered per month.

On March 1st, 2015 – the Ask A Librarian Delaware service switched to using LibAnswers for their statewide reference expanding their service to include SMS/Text-Message Reference. We had a chance to chat with Cathay Keough, Statewide Coordinate of Reference Services for DAAL, and here’s what she had to say!

Delaware Division of Libraries - Genealogy LibGuides

Delaware Division of Libraries – Genealogy LibGuides

What inspired you to switch to LibAnswers for your Statewide Service?

Ask a Librarian Delaware is an extension of Delaware libraries’ reference services, and in keeping with our initiative to find ways to improve library services, it was important to keep our eyes open for products that best fit our ideals.  Springshare’s LibGuides was already being used by Delaware Division of Libraries, and that gave us an introduction to the other products Springshare provides.  Upon closer examination and through a trial process, we decided to proceed with this transition to LibAnswers.  I had also seen the FAQs portion of LibAnswers in action through another library service, and was impressed by a demo provided during a library conference.

Statistics are important to DAAL – Tell us how you’re using LibAnswers Reference Analytics to track reference stats.

To track statistics, we began using the Dewey Decimal system a few years ago as a way to help us identify types of questions asked across all of our reference interactions (on the desk, telephone, email, chat, texting) and have coined the term for this reporting process, “Dewey Delaware.”  Our LibAnswers Reference Analytics was easily set up to continue this type of tracking.

You’ve been using LibAnswers for DAAL for 5 months now – tell us about your experience!

June Stats!

  • 555 Views on FAQs
  • 86 SMS/Text-Message Questions Answered
  • 600 Total June Reference Questions across Email, SMS, Chat

So far, from the training to the statistics, LibAnswers has been just what we hoped it would be:

  • easy to train library staff
  • intuitive to use
  • responsive on any device for library staff and patrons
  • adaptable for future considerations, such as developing a separate Group or Queue identity for a special library, but within the same cooperative.

Staff commonly remark that they love the interface and find it to be an easy and effective way to provide reference for online customers.

As a shared statewide system, the “Reuse Answers” (FAQs and librarians’ responses) have already shown value for library staff; it saves time as well as creates consistency in answering to share what we know in this way.  Features like Reuse Answers, patron surveys on chat, and Query Spy give us excellent information to continue to improve our reference services.

We also appreciate that Springshare’s Support Team have listened to suggestions and ideas for improving the interface as well.

What does the future hold for Ask a Librarian Delaware?

In the future we plan to explore more options for visibility of the Ask a Librarian DE service.  The widgets are easy to create and implement on library websites and anywhere Delaware patrons are online.  Our only challenge is to work with those in charge of the sites; sometimes there are hurdles with website restrictions, depending upon the library or institution.  Springshare’s products are well established and their reputation is rapidly growing, however, so it’s just a matter of time.

We enjoy providing professional and fun options for all our library patrons and students and look forward to serving our Delaware community in ways that fit their needs, where they are and when they need it.

New Castle County Public Library

New Castle County Public Library – LibAnswers Search FAQ Widget