David Russell, Senior Digital Inclusion Officer at West Dunbartonshire Libraries shared his experiences with me on using netloan PC booking for computer session management and printing in his libraries. As netloan account manager, it's always good to hear positive feedback from customers. You'll find that this account from West Dunbartonshire also gives some useful insights into how library computers are managed and how access can be improved through use of our software.
How has using netloan benefited your library environment?
Netloan allows us to provide an equitable PC offering to our customers by limiting them to a maximum amount of time per day but at the same time it has the flexibility to allow staff to override this if the PCs aren’t being used and extend a user’s booking. We also find that having the printing and payment of printing integrated into the system it makes the user experience much smoother and definitely a bonus to some other system we have seen.
Netloan is very easy to learn and use, this extends to all users and not only from the end users point of view but also from our frontline staff dealing with it on a daily basis and as an administrator having to deal with reports and setup changes. This meant that the transition to it was very smooth for all concerned
What do you staff like most about netloan?
From a staff point of view the interface is very simple and easy to use and navigate. The reservation grid’s multi-colour format and simple layout makes it easy to see the status of our units which means reservations can be made or altered very quickly with a couple of clicks of the mouse. The system also lets you quickly see which user is using a particular unit by using a ‘mouse over’ function which our staff have found useful. When this ‘hover over’ function is used on the PC units it also lets staff see what equipment and software is available on each unit i.e. which ones have scanners attached etc and helps them guide user’s to the proper unit to meet their requirements.
How has it improved computer access for customers and supported their experience of using the library?
Ours customers like the fact that they can access the PCs in multiple ways they can…
- Call and ask a member of staff to pre book a PC for them.
- Go online and pre-book a PC online up to 2 weeks in advance themselves.
- Walk up and log on to a PC without pre-booking as long as the PC is available.
Once logged on the user can easily see how long they have remaining using the built in timer and Netloan gives them a couple of visible warnings at a pre-set time before their session ends. The system also allows the user to extend their time by a pre-set time limit if the PC is available after their allotted time.
How does netloan improve or simplify the administration of the People’s Network?
As an administrator I find the back office very easy to navigate and use and change settings, but to be honest once setup there seems very little to do in the way of changing setting etc. The reports section is easy to use and offers them in 3 formats, Excel, PDF or HTML.
What’s your experience of working with Lorensbergs?
I have had a very good experience from the initial contact through to the installation and training. My dealings with the sales team and technical department’s communication has been very good and clear, nothing seems to be problem. With regards to aftersales I have found the helpdesk on the few occasions I have had to use it to be responsive and quick to reply as well as very helpful.
The annual netloan user group meetings are also a great way of hearing about latest developments and about other authorities experiences etc. It is pitched at a good level of both technical and non-technical subject matter and I would recommend them to all netloan users.
Would you recommend netloan to other public library authorities?
Yes, it's a very good product.
With thanks to David for providing us with this feedback for our blog. For further information on netloan, please see the webpage here.