One of the students safe spaces during face-to-face classes is the library. For some, the wall to ceiling shelves of books is a space to learn topics they are interested in. While for others, the library is somewhere they can relax and breathe. However, the transition to online learning greatly affected access to these spaces.
Luckily, libraries are going online too. School administrations are curating their online library management systems to continue to provide for the students and employees.
But before digging into the gears of online library management, let’s discuss what library management is in general.
What is Library Management
In a hierarchical setup, library management is a sub-discipline of institutional management. This ranking means that library management is essential for any and all academic institutions.
Library management comprises several management tasks that range from documenting and organizing references to pushing for intellectual freedom.
Primarily, librarians work on the acquisition, organization, and circulation of resources. They get to decide which types of books will be part of the library’s system. Apart from physical books, they also have the last say regarding subscriptions to online libraries. Most universities and highly-populated schools have a subscription to digital libraries where journals, e-books, and other resource materials are in circulation.
With this general overview, let’s continue to dig into the primary features of online library management.
Primary Features of an Online Library Management System
Easy and Accessible Database
The central feature of any online library management software is the online database. Before its existence, this database is only accessible by the library management staff. There are instances where the users can access them but under their watchful supervision.
But now, it’s easy to regulate the access without constantly peering through the user’s shoulders. Online library management software allows for that.
It is effortless when using a comprehensive school management software that has an online library feature. GoSchooler has one. Since students already have access to the portal, the library management doesn’t have the added responsibility to assign access to them.
In this software, the library feature has four major functions, and one of them is the Manage Books command.
In the Manage Books tab, the user can see the titles of all the references that are recorded in the library system. Aside from that, other identifiers are also available, such as the book number and assigned bar code. Most importantly, the quantity and availability of such titles are also present.
Accessible Circulation Tracking
One of the major loopholes in the traditional library management system is the confusing circulation tracking.
Students who are waiting for a certain reference book need to check its circulation status almost every day to ensure their spot as the next borrower. However, with the online system, they can check its status through the portal. They don’t need to go to the library every so often.
Additionally, if the library management allows, they can request to reserve the book when returned. Although a reservations list is already a viable option during the traditional management system, tracking is tricky and exhausting. That’s why only a handful of books are allowed for reservation.
However, this online management system will automate the entire process that requires minimal supervision.
Why does your school need online library management?
Reason #01: Quality Academic References are Expensive for Students
The bulk of quality journals and scientific paper discussions are published under private institutions. Complete access to these resources means an equivalent amount of monthly and yearly subscription fees.
In over a year of schooling, it’s impossible for a student not to need a reliable and good-quality published journal or clipping. Without access granted by the school, the subscription fee is far too hefty for a single student for one-time use.
Online library management can curb this need because it primarily focuses on these types of references. Aside from managing the existing library materials, online libraries are investing more and more in other digital libraries that will suffice the need of their students.
Aside from that, this investment will also lessen the rate of illegal downloads of academic papers and references. In a way, it streamlines its support towards the academe and the research industry.
Reason #02: Caters to the Needs of the New Learning Method
Online learning is both a friend and a foe. It brings out the same mix of emotions for both students and instructors.
If you are still mulling over investing in an online library management software, now is the high time to get into it. The rapid change in the global academic system has left everyone gaping like fishes out of the water, and this system is one of the instant remedies available.
It’s easy to use as the learning curve isn’t that steep. It provides equal access to primary stakeholders. Lastly, it gives the same service it promised during face-to-face classes.
Online library management is a system that rose to the occasion.
As the global education system faced challenges in instruction, libraries migrated online and provided a—more or less—similar service as before. But here’s the catch, the service isn’t just similar; online library management got better because of its free access to its primary stakeholders.
As much as stand-alone online library management software is easy to use, it is even more user-friendly when it is a seamless feature integration in a comprehensive school management software. Think about the convenience of having a single access portal and a single set of access credentials.