Kelsey shared a presentation (linked above) which covered recent SEAL updates and focused on our Regional Inter-library Loan code & Procedures.
General SEAL update:
- Borrowing and lending re-started August 4, 2020.
- Libraries gradually became active again as they were able.
- SEAL use has been pretty consistent ever since.
- Our fill rate stabilized since last August. Fill rate indicates how many borrowing requests have ultimately been filled by the lending library. When we started in August, it was hovering around 60%, which made sense due to the pandemic. Since then it has risen back to the pre-pandemic rate of 75%.
SEAL - ILLiad API:
- As a reminder, last year Zack (Southeastern’s System Manager) worked with Vassar to develop a SEAL - ILLiad API.
- API’s allow for information to be communicated between two different systems.
- With the SEAL-ILLiad API, SEAL requests can appear directly in the clients of libraries using ILLiad.
- Zack worked with SUNY New Paltz this spring to implement the API there.
- This is something that can be set up at any library using ILLiad! Just contact firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.
Updates to Training Materials:
- Kelsey made several updates to SEAL training materials over the past year.
- The SEAL FAQ was re-organized – it is now sorted by topic. Kelsey also added some color (no more grey!)
- The FAQ can be expanded to as needed. If you ever see something missing, or have any SEAL questions, just shoot Kelsey a message.
- Kelsey also updated the SEAL manual. She streamlined some sections and added information on delivery, updating borrowing / lending requests, and managing your SEAL account.
- The SEAL training videos were re-recorded. Some new videos were added, including one focusing on advanced searching in the SEAL catalog.
- One-on-one SEAL training is available as needed.
- Kelsey can do zoom walk-throughs on how to set up and use SEAL.
- The training takes roughly 45 minutes.
- This can be done with individuals or a group of library staff.
- Contact Kelsey to set up a training.
- Kelsey is working on a communications toolkit for the SEAL libguide.
- This would include resources that can help staff advertise inter-library loan services to patrons. It would also be a way to communicate about SEAL with library staff who aren’t familiar with it.
- Some proposed materials include: ILL promotional materials (such as bookmarks or other hand-outs), a SEAL fact sheet, and one-page training guides on different SEAL workflows. (These would be geared towards staff who are covering SEAL short-term during vacations, etc.)
- Kelsey is planning on sending another SEAL survey out this winter. The 2019 survey provided a lot of great feedback on SEAL. It led to the creation of the categories in the SEAL search.
Resource sharing SIG:
- Southeastern has been hosting a Resource Sharing SIG every 2-3 months.
- The SIG allows for resource sharing professionals of all stripes to meet, ask advice, and share relevant resources.
- The group touches on a lot of topics. Attendees talk about ILL, customer service, course reserves, building safety, SEAL, etc.
- You can find past meeting minutes on the SIG libguide.
- The next SIG (virtual) is scheduled for September 16 from 1:30-2:30 https://www.senylrc.org/ResourceSharingSIG
Code and Procedures
Our Regional inter-library loan Code & Procedures provide guidance on resource sharing. The regional code is adapted from the ALA Interlibrary Loan Code for the United States. The procedures provide a how-to for ILL processes, referencing the relevant ILL code. These are updated once a year by the Regional Inter-library loan committee.
You can find the code here.
The newly updated Procedures are here.
Lost / damaged books:
- The golden rule of ILL is: “Assume responsibility for borrowed material from the time it leaves the supplying library until it has been returned to and received by the supplying library” (4.9)
- If an item is damaged / lost by a borrowing library’s patron, the first step is to contact the lending library to let them know what happened. You can find their contact information in the SEAL directory, as well as the initial borrowing email you received from SEAL.
- The ball is then in the lender’s court. Per the code, lender’s can choose whether to invoice for lost items.
- Lenders can also decide if they are willing to accept a replacement copy in lieu of payment.
- The Code provides some information on billing. Lenders should invoice for items no later than one year after the initial due date. Borrowers should pay invoices / address billing errors within six months of receiving an invoice.
- Borrowing libraries can invoice their patrons for lost / damaged items as usual – just be aware if they don’t pay, their library is still on the hook (per the golden rule).
- It can be a bit different if an item is lost in transit. The borrowing and lending libraries might need to work together and investigate to figure out where the book went.
- Finding out the delivery method and what date it was sent can be helpful in tracking the item down. Some vendors also offer tracking, which can be helpful in determining what happened to an item.
- Some possibilities for why an item hasn't shown up: it could have been delivered to the wrong library, delivered and accidentally shelved, or plain lost by the courier.
- If the delivery vendor offers refunds or insurance, they may be able to reimburse for the cost of a lost book. This is why it’s vital to try and figure out when the item went missing.
- Kelsey can help with delivery mysteries!
- There is no standard lending period in SEAL. This is something that is always up to the lending library.
- However, the procedures do recommend the libraries keep certain things in mind when deciding on due dates. The first of these is the length of delivery. Items can sometimes take a week or two to show up. The borrowing library also needs time to contact their patron and schedule pick-up.
- Kelsey’s recommendation: at least 5 weeks when possible.
- Another important thing: due dates are defined as the date items are due back at borrowing libraries. Per the code: “due dates are defined as the date the material is due to be checked in at the requesting library for return to the supplying library” (5.7) .
- Renewals should be requested in advance of an item’s due date. This guarantees that if a renewal can’t be granted, the item can still be returned on time.
- SEAL renewals can be requested in a couple of ways. You can request a renewal directly within SEAL. Instructions are available in this short video: https://youtu.be/bXkpyzwDkus. You can also contact the lender directly by email.
- Lenders should answer all renewal requests either negatively or positively. This way a borrower knows whether or not an item needs to be returned.
- The code encourages granting renewal requests when items don’t have any local or system holds.