‘And What’s That Supposed To Mean? – Ronán Kennedy

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Ronán Kennedy, NUI Galway.

A number of years ago, we developed a reporting form for Library users so they could let us know quickly and efficiently when they were having problems with e-resources.
This paper addresses how the E-Resource Enquiry Form has been an integral part of the E-Resource Team’s day-to-day operations since its incepotion. It will cover the reasons behind its implementation, how we designed the form as effectively as possible, where we placed it, and how we let the user community know about it.
The paper will also detail the mechanisms we have built to help us respond to submitted forms as efficiently as possible (for both the users and ourselves), and how the mechanisms evolved as the numbers of forms grew. It will also provide some insight into the strengthening relationship we have evolved with our user community.
The second part of this paper addresses the development of a process to collect and analyse the data from these tickets. It will cover how we created a system to firstly standardise reported tickets, and then harvest relevant information. The paper will then address what that information has told us about our users, and how what they say is often not what they mean.
Finally, the paper will illustrate data to show how we can track usage patterns, and how we hope to use it for year-on-year analysis from now on.

As E-Resources Librarian in NUI Galway, Ronán’s main responsibility is ensuring the routes to e-resources are simple, quick and rewarding for the user. Achieving this lofty ideal makes Ronán’s involvement with e-resources multi-faceted.
He manages the team responsible for ensuring accurate and efficient access to e-resources for the user community. Ronán also has an involvement in working towards constant gains in efficiencies, standardisation of information discoverable by users, incorporation of linking and access technologies, and mobile technologies among other areas.