Survey finds more information on e-books is needed from councils

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7th February 2017 12:41 - Museums, Libraries and Archives

Survey finds more information on e-books is needed from councils: According to Socitm’s latest Better Connected survey, just 44 per cent of councils are providing a good or very good online service for e-resources, which is a notable drop from the 74 per cent of county council library websites which achieved the same level for the previous years’ challenge of renewing a library book online.Survey finds more information on e-books is needed from councils

The survey also found that the level for good or very good online services is also smaller than the 52 per cent of county councils that passed the mobile-only test for exploring how to borrow e-books online in 2015. However, it was noted by Socitm that the survey questions involved in passing that test were “perhaps less challenging” than those for this year’s e-resources test.

Socitm - a company which represents digital and IT professionals in local government – conducted the survey to explore how easy or difficult it is for the public to sign up for e-resources on county council websites in England.

The only four counties to maintain the top spot for their website performance from the 2015-16 assessment to this year’s library task were East Sussex and Staffordshire.

Socitm stated in its report that the public frequently visit council websites to access library resources and because of this, e-resources should feature prominently on library services landing pages.

The research findings revealed that the primary reason for councils failing was the lack of good, coherent explanations on how to use e-books and other e-resources. Just 41 per cent of council websites were found to provide a clear process for the lending of e-books and clear information on how to return them.

The report says that that the people who create library pages “need to account for the fact that processes for borrowing e-books, magazines and audio resources are different and more complicated than traditional book borrowing”.

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