Nobody Knows and Nobody Is Responsible: Issues in E-Books Workflow and Access

WCU Author/Contributor (non-WCU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Tina M. Adams, Electronic Resources Librarian (Creator)
Paromita Biswas, Metadata Librarian (Creator)
Western Carolina University (WCU )
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Abstract: Hunter Library at Western Carolina University is a midsized academic institution managing 10 large e-book packages and about 80,000 individual e-book titles. Managing e-books involves working with multiple vendors and staff from different areas of technical services. This paper examines issues in e-book workflows; in particular, we will share the results of a project to document our e-book workflows and utilize an existing technology, Microsoft SharePoint, to better manage this workflow and share information and communication among staff involved in this process. The idea for this project came with the almost simultaneous hiring of the electronic resources librarian and the metadata librarian’s assumption of the responsibility for loading e-book machine-readable cataloging (MARC) records into the catalog. We found the existing workflow related to downloading MARC records from vendors’ sites confusing because of the involvement of multiple units within our technical services department, Content Organization and Management (COM). We also noticed there were questions from both users and library faculty about e-book user limits and download rights that were not easily answered by looking at the catalog record, nor was the information readily available. How might we share unique access information with users and public services staff? How might technical services staff better communicate with each other regarding their individual roles and responsibilities in this process? How do we document and maintain relevant information for technical services staff? This project dealt not only with our e-book workflow but also helped to eliminate knowledge silos we discovered in our technical services department.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2016
e-book, electronic resources, technical services

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