How Does Library Management System Works?
The Library Management System (LMS) is the advanced software that provides the database pertaining to a library. The system is used to track all the materials that are owned by the library, orders placed for procurement of new materials, payments that were made and name of the members or subscribers who have borrowed books from the library. The system tracks the subscribers and items using the unique IDs that are given to the individual subscribers as well as individual items. The functions of LMS are tracking and shelving of the items, circulation, preparing catalog, receiving materials and billing, ordering and procuring the required materials. Library Management System provides the best solutions for accounts management, collection analysis and other similar activities that are carried out online. The professionals from the companies that provide LMS work with their clients and guide them to use the software for diverse tasks so as to make the functioning of the library more efficient and effective. The purpose of Library Management System is to streamline various functions of the library such as cataloging, circulation and acquisitions. The Library Management System can be provided for a single library or for the libraries of a group of institutions. The companies that provide management services for the libraries ensure efficient workflows and provide the facility to libraries to share the facilities as well as costs of infrastructure.
Integrated LMS and Interoperable LMS
The technologically advanced LBS are web-based and the users are able to access the system through a web-browser. The companies that offer this type of software to the libraries also provide technical service, training and other support services. Many advanced Library Management software products are developed for specific users like medical libraries, educational institutions, legal libraries and various resource centres. With the help of multi-location Library Management Systems, the librarians and resource managers of libraries are able to manage information in multi-type resources. Now, librarians are able to manage their libraries online by using integrated Library Management systems. When security based resources are indexed in the major search engines such as Google and Yahoo, the users from any part of the world can access the library based on the resource. This will make marketing easier for libraries. The integrated Library Management Systems provide the best solution for automation of libraries. The most advanced features such as Cataloging, Report Generation, MAC21 and Live web OPAC, etc. are now made accessible for the librarians so that the libraries need not spend money in order to procure costly software and hardware.
The advanced LBSs ensure to keep the databases secured, tamper-free and with constant back up arrangements time to time. All these tasks are performed by the system automatically only. Now libraries are able to share data across blogs, social networking sites and various official sites with the help of RSS module. The modern Library Management Systems ensure usability, integration and comfortable online management of libraries. Apart from enabling the libraries to add additional features and modules the modern Library Management Systems also enable libraries to work as well as share with other libraries. While the traditional LBSs were used exclusively to run the libraries efficiently and effectively, the advanced LBSs have additional tasks to perform like meeting various requirements of the libraries and providing user experience. The Library Management Systems had been subjected to a lot of innovations. The LBSs are already standards based and in the near future they are likely to be more standards based. The web-based library automation software provides enhanced facilities like multi-branch operation and multi-location management. Efforts are on to make these systems interoperable so that institutions can operate the system with their portals and record systems. When the system is made interoperable, many changes can be brought in the process though the core system remains with the service provider.
Advanced LMS for academic institutions
In the academic context the Library Management System manages a wide range of functions including asset management, catalogs, metadata, source materials, learning resources, etc. The LBS ensures running of the library in a well-structured and efficiently managed way. The users can search the assets, find out whether a particular asset exists and if so its location and they can receive the asset whenever they require it. The LBS will also support other functions like creation and publication. The advanced types of LMS that is developed specially for academic as well as research institutions provide the facility to integrate with other systems so that searches can be made across multiple databases. Now, many companies offer the system with a single interface to multiple e-resources such as books from the libraries, virtual reference, RSS feeds, digital archives, databases, etc. By way of enhancing the functionality of the Library Management Systems, the suppliers are able to provide more support to their clients thanks to the new features of the software. Electronic Packing Slips and XML documents are provided with local system so that the check-in data can be updated at issue level. Reminders and feedbacks about reservations can be sent to the users with the help of computer integrated telephony. Access to the OPACs is provided through mobile phones and other mobile devices like PDAs.