Library automation can be described as the use of computers and computer software products to automate the standard procedures of libraries like cataloging and circulation. Due to the vast amount of information involved in these transitions, library management must implement a plan that will encompass a wide diversity or areas under their scope of responsibility.
Many of today’s libraries have been in existences for many decades and they have collected loads and loads of valuable information that people use in relation to grade school and high school assignments, college and university projects, work projects, public and private initiatives and much much more. Therefore, transferring all of the information that they have gathered over the years is a monumental endeavor at best, especially when automating all of this information so that it can be asked again at a later date.
Some common areas that librarians will focus on usually includes data that is contained on microfilm and other information that is kept in the archives of their libraries. So, it is essential that these whole projects are handled strategically in order to be both efficient as well as cost effective. For instance, if the information is on microfilm, the library officials will need to work with a automation library provider to select the best process for transferring all of the microfilm information to a digital resource.
Fortunately, there are services offered that will preserve microfilm in a format that can meet the requirements needed. Today, there are at least two options available that can be used (i.e. high contrast tone film in 105mm fiche sizes or 35mm sizes. Whatever the case, it is important for librarians to review each kind so that they can make an informed decision.
In addition to making sure the information is transformed into the right type of digital format, another decision that will need to be made is about cataloging. As this is an area that’s needed to store and retrieve information in the appropriate format, the library officials will has to select the best type of automated solution to accommodate these needs. Which means, instead of an individual visiting the library to pick up a hard copy book after looking through the card catalog, they will use a different process to find the book via an automated solution. This is why some librarians are soliciting assistance from organization like Backstage Library Works to obtain what they need as quickly as possible versus having to wait for a physical shipment to arrive.
Due all of advances in technology today, there have been many major changes in how data is stored and accessed. To stay up with the most recent changes and innovations, libraries are looking for the best automated solutions to store the information that they have gathered over a period of many decades. From transferring whole books to a digital format to changing microfilm into a suitable alternative, libraries are tasked with meeting the needs of this changing industry.