Welsh library study reveals lower costs and higher quality systems

An independent evaluation of the Wales Higher Education Libraries Forum shared library management system published today uncovers the benefits of collaboration.

The report “Evaluating the benefits of the WHELF consortial approach to a library management system (LMS)” commissioned by the Wales Higher Education Libraries Forum (WHELF) and carried out by Cambridge Econometrics highlights a proposed framework to understand the range and extent of benefits achieved by migrating to a new LMS as a consortium.

The report, funded by Jisc, reveals benefits including lower supplier costs, with a saving of £226,000 achieved over 2015-17 and higher quality systems for staff and users. Smaller institutions benefited from operating as part of the WHELF consortium, because they were able to procure a higher-quality system and benefit from the added functionality and features of a more powerful LMS.

The report is supported by a set of case studies that highlight the positive impact on collaboration and knowledge sharing across different institutions.

Graham Hay, Associate Director, Cambridge Econometrics said: “Quantitative approaches to evaluating the impact of implementing a LMS under a collaborative approach are relatively underdeveloped.

By providing a structured framework for identifying the impacts of migrating to a new LMS through a consortial approach and a feasible method for quantifying them, this report is a novel addition to the existing research in this domain.

The approach presented in the report provides a set of tools and frameworks that HE institutions can customise to suit their circumstances. Furthermore, the approach can be refined as more and better information becomes available over time, thereby allowing it to evolve and remain applicable in future.”

Please find here WHELF’s press release.

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