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Procurement of LibAnswers Enquiry Management System

Bethan Smith10 June 2020

I am pleased to announce that Library Services has procured a service-wide licence for LibAnswers, an enquiry management system that will vastly improve our capabilities for handling customer enquiries. This is a fantastic piece of news, providing an important step in achieving a number of our goals in the Library Services Strategy.

A number of staff may already be familiar with the software, including colleagues at the IOE. For those not familiar, LibAnswers is an enquiry management system designed specifically for libraries, which will enable us to improve the service we provide when managing the enquiries we receive on a daily basis.

It will allow us to filter and refer queries to other teams more easily, provide an FAQ database to assist our customers with everyday queries, and statistically examine the types and volumes of enquiries we receive. In the long term, it will hopefully integrate with other Springshare products we have recently invested in, such as LibGuides.

This information, in particular the methodical collection of customer feedback, will play a vital role in helping us to help us to target service improvements in the future and to monitor and plan for our peak times.

As part of this new software launch, we are also aiming to make use of the LibChat chat service available within LibAnswers. We are hoping to have this in place relatively soon to allow customers to interact with us in real time – an important feature as we continue to work remotely as part of the gradual, phased return to campus.

The aim is to have a working platform in place for the new term, with additional elements rolled out in stages. The scope of this initial launch will be limited to a few selected services, including library@ucl. Other teams and site libraries will be added to the platform in a gradual, phased approach throughout 2020/2021.

This will be an ongoing process and if you are considered for involvement in the soft launch of the system you will receive notification from your line manager soon. You may also receive some automated emails in the coming weeks as we gradually set up colleagues on the system.

Progress on this project, both in terms of its technical setup and the wider implications for Library Services, will be overseen and managed by a dedicated project board. Comprehensive training, documents and testing slots will also be set up in order to ensure that staff are well prepared and feel confident working with the software before go-live.

This is an exciting opportunity for Library Services to make our customer service provision more extensive, comprehensive and proficient. We will provide further updates on this project as we configure our LibAnswers platform.