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Library Quarterly Report FY18 Q4: April-June 2018



s noted in the FY18Q2 report, total holdings shown in the library's Online Catalog dropped suddenly as Gil Kenner, head of library cataloging, worked to prepare for a new version of the Skillsoft Books24x7 database. Including catalog records for Ebooks (like those in Books24x7) in the catalog is smart business because it helps patrons see all options available to them. But cataloging work takes special skills and sometimes requires special maintenance. 

Because the Books24x7 database was migrating to a new location the URLs of thousands of items in the catalog would be changing. We decided to temporarily remove those records, which resulted in a decrease of more than 35,000 items in our reported cataloging statistics in FY18Q2, shown in the graph below. 

Chart depicting the temporary decrease in library catalog records.

That deficit was reversed last quarter, as Gil Kenner worked to quickly restore previous catalog records and increase those collections. As we replaced the records we were notified by the vendor that M
cGraw-Hill Education decided to lift copyright restrictions on additional content, which increased the resource's size by about 3,000 Ebooks and Audio Books. 

This spreadsheet shows the new content and the total content  Skillsoft Books New Content 2019 and the total content now exceeds 83,000 E-Books, Audio Books and Instructional Videos, pushing the size of the catalog to record proportions.


Aside from obvious trends (like decreased activity on days when the library is closed) is hard to tell what collections or services might be used the most on any given quarter. We are often surprised by what we see.  Here were a few statistics from this quarter:

  • Print use for the Lynchburg District is usually around 25 items. It zoomed up to 131 items this quarter! A similar spike happened in FY18 Q2 (100 items) as well thought, we are not sure why.
  • In fact, we saw the single highest print collection usage we've had for nearly a decade this quarter, underscoring the fact that print is far from dead.
  • We also had a record number "document delivery" requests this quarter (93 in all), reminding us that the service is highly valued by busy VDOT employees statewide. The average is about 50/quarter.  
  • Finally, we completed an unusually high number of literature search requests this quarter (a total of 7) compared to low quarterly numbers the past 2 years.  

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