Thursday, 6 September 2012

Trialing additional courier services

As I've reported earlier, bringing together the holdings of a number of libraries has proved very popular with customers - leading to pallet loads of items being shipped to some libraries.   This level of demand has continued, leading to a few logistics issues for some of the bigger libraries.

As a result of this we have decided to see if there any benefit in getting TOLL (our courier) to deliver directly to some or all of the branches of these multi-branch library services.  This process has included some analysis of the volume of items travelling from library main branches out to various other branches.  We have identified that if we provide direct deliveries to the busiest of these branches then we can assist libraries in not double handling so many items & avoid some of the bottle necks that are currently occurring.

This change will be a trial that will run from 24 September until the end of January, to give us an opportunity to examine whether this meets the needs of libraries & whether this is the model that we roll out to other multi-branch libraries where the volume of items warrants this.
 So, based on the volume of items being shipped we are adding the following direct delivery points to the courier.
  • Mitcham - we are adding Blackwood.
  • Marion - we are adding the Cultural Centre (but not Hallett Cove)
  • Onkaparinga - we are adding Aberfoyle Park, Woodcroft & Seaford (but not Aldinga or Willunga)
  • Pt Adelaide Enfield - we are adding Pt Adelaide & Greenacres (but not the Parks or Semaphore)
  • Salisbury - we are adding Ingle Farm & Salisbury West but not (Mawson Lakes or Para Hills)
I am aware that there are costs associated with this trial, and these will be monitored.  We will use this information to consider how we will operate the full consortium in coming years.
It is perhaps worth noting that while PLS has limited funds to operate the courier we have attempted to arrange the service on a needs basis.  So we have always delivered to multiple sites with council boundaries in a range of country councils (e.g. Millicent & Penola, Bordertown & Keith etc) to meet local needs based on distance.  So extending some additional deliveries based on need (volume not distance) is consistent with previous practise.

While these changes have particularly targeted busy large metro libraries PLS will continue to monitor the impact of the One Card Consortium on deliveries to country locations.  If demand increases significantly then we will look at both the number of crates being delivered as well as the frequency of deliveries, given that some libraries receive 2 deliveries a week & some receive 3.
I should just note that I'm off on a 5 week break from tomorrow, but the One Card consortium project and other PLS network activities will proceed unabated in my absence.  Teresa will be acting in my role & I'm handing over the reins of this blog to Jon who will gather information from others & add posts here when we have information of relevance to post.  I'll be reading with interest from afar while taking a break.  I expect that we will be able to report on:
  1. Signing an eBook / eAudio contract
  2. Progress on enabling non-consortium members access to ILLs
  3. Libraries of the current SWAP network going live

No comments:

Post a Comment