Friday, May 28, 2010

Welcome !, Authority 1 - Libraries NI online signup

Screenshot from Libraries NI online registration process - with a blank pull down menu

If Libraries NI are wanting to make it easy for people to sign up to use the shrinking number of public libraries, then perhaps they need to fix their online registration process.

While I might normally appreciate being able to opt out of spam, in the case of my local library I might have welcomed the odd marketing email to let me know about events.

Screenshot from end of Libraries NI online registration process - with missing text and incorrect mapping of forenames to the welcome text

The final screen also lacks the personal touch! And it would be handy if they finished specifying the "Text about bringing in ID".

Strangely, at the end of the process, Libraries NI don't seem to send out an email with your details, registration number and instructions of what you need to do when you first visit a physical library.

The information about bringing proof of name and address is explained on the opening page of the registration process, but that's really not when you'll be paying attention!

11 comments:

whynotsmile said...

I'd love to get my hands on the Libraries NI online system! They did re-build it about a year ago, but there are so many wee things that could just do with finishing off...

Giordano Bruno said...

The online registration option is rather pointless. You still have to bring your ID in to a library before you can do any business. It will probably slow things down in fact as the poor library person scratches their head, trying to work out how to make an online registration into a real world one.
Also, don't bring your passport, its no good for proof of address.

shinyforager said...

Absolutely agree - the online registration process is very confusing. The catalogue is a bit of mess, too... All in all, doesn't scream Library 2.0.

whynotsmile said...

Ah, the catalogue! Search for a book, and you get 10 different entries for 10 different versions. You then have to go into each one and scroll down to see if it's available in your library.

Why can't they add a search facility which searches on title and author, giving ONE result, beacuse I don't care which edition I read, and which also indicates if there are any copies available in your two closest libraries?!

shinyforager said...

Having 10 separate entries for 10 different versions of a particular book is desirable, in my view. But there shouldn't be separate entries for identical editions held across the branch libraries - as I've found is often the case with the LibrariesNI catalogue. A good catalogue should be more than just an inventory of holdings, but I don't think the LibrariesNI catalogue is even a decent inventory: it is full of inconsistencies and basic cataloguing errors.

(Incidentally, you should be able search by branch - just go into the advanced search option - though unfortunately it doesn't allow you to search title/author simultaneously :) )

whynotsmile said...

I guess it matters more for some kinds of books than others. Like, if I want to read a novel, I don't really care which edition it is. Even if they could list them all together but put a note beside saying which edition it is.

Oh, to get our hands on that system!

shinyforager said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
whynotsmile said...

Excellent. I'll do the website if you want.

Anonymous said...

I think the system needs completely reworked again.

I agree too that it is more confusing than it's worth considering you still have to turn up with your id.

<a href="http://www.nitransfertest.co.uk>Mary</a>

boho said...

It isn't as easy and straightforward to navigate around as such a thing should be and that's for sure... Btw anyone notice the latest writing competition as promoted on their website?? All very well holding a writing competition but surely being able to spell "writTing" correctly isn't too much to ask is it??!

Anonymous said...

Libraries-ni are a waste of space organisation that are totaly unfot for purpose. Their catalogues, registration and (dare I say it) a lot of their staff are rubbish!