Message to the Community from Luren E. Dickinson:
The progress the Shaker Library is making toward accomplishing its strategic objectives is sometimes invisible to the general public. We are in the process of pursuing a number of internal and external objectives that will ultimately create library spaces that are welcoming and easy-to-navigate, provide a positive customer experience, and integrate the Library into all aspects of community life.
Several items on our internal checklist will be unnoticed by the public. A former staff locker room has been converted into additional storage space for the Friends of the Shaker Library book sale. The 19-year old staff break room at the Main Library, which was furnished with items well over 20 years old, is been repainted, re-carpeted, and refurnished on a budget!
The Library is also in the process of converting from a traditional telephone system to a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) system, which utilizes the Internet through computer cables. Replacement costs for an aging phone system will be covered in just over three years by eliminating the annual maintenance fees. The VoIP system is being coordinated through the Cleveland Public Library as part of our CLEVNET membership and will allow free calls to any CPL branch and all other participating member library locations.
Our more visible projects include building maintenance and repairs, including painting the handicapped railings at the Main Library entrance and repairing and repainting the treads on the internal stairwells. At Bertram Woods, we will complete a landscape design and enhancements. Major work is also underway on the Main Library’s cupola, flat and slate roof repairs, and the final repainting of the cement bands on the south façade.
Perhaps the most noticeable change this month will be the repaving and restriping of the city-owned parking lot at the Main Library, which took much abuse during the 2010 construction of Library Court Apartments. When a new layer of pavement is applied and the parking lines are striped, the lot will be much more usable for Library Court apartment residents, visitors to the Community Building, and for our library customers.
The move toward self-checkout is a major undertaking which requires a great deal of planning and coordination as it involves a major shift of the collections at the Main Library. What is now the Movies & Music area will become a Quiet Study Room. An adjacent office has been converted to a group study room for up to six people and is available for use. We plan to move the video and CD collections to a more central area on the main floor and we anticipate that the transition will begin in January and February 2013.
We continue to monitor complaints and compliments from the public. Through June, 55% of the feedback has been complimentary—with the majority of compliments given for excellent customer service. Complaints cover a wide range of areas related to the facility, equipment, and technology—despite the fact that one out of every eight compliments was for our computers! Once we have established a baseline, our goal is to reduce complaints in 2013-2014 by 30%.
Our Summer Reading Program is off to a great start with online registration available for the first time thanks to the Friends of the Shaker Library, which underwrote the purchase of the new module. Not only has this new online service helped to reduce the staffing required for manual registration, but also, has increased the number of summer reading registrants. After only three days, children’s registration was 40% ahead of last year and, in 10 days, teen registration surpassed the entire summer of 2011! Summer reading is for everyone – from preschoolers to seniors - and registration is easy. Log on online at http://oh.evanced.info/shaker/sr/homepage.asp. If you are not so sure of your computer skills, ask for help at one of the information desks. Our staff is eager to help!
Be sure to stop by the Main Library between 1 and 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 18 when OverDrive’s “Digimobile” will be parked in the parking lot. The Digital Bookmobile is a high-tech update of the traditional bookmobile and promotes the Library’s services for downloading eBooks, audiobooks, music and video. Save the date! Climb aboard, and learn how to tap into the electronic resources that can enhance your life.