Implementing a reference logger

Implementing a reference logger

September 20, 2013 • METRO Reference Special Interest Group

This talk described the process of implementing a simple reference interaction logger at Lloyd Sealy Library. After collecting feedback from all librarians, we carefully created a logger using a Google web form, prioritizing speed and ease of use. We analyze the data to staff our reference desk intelligently and provide better reference service for our students and faculty.

Slides (PDF)

Sample report
Demo form
Demo data spreadsheet

 Outline of presentation

  • what it looks like
    • ask how many libraries log and assess reference
  • who takes stats?
  • benefits
  • risks
    • dirty data: allowing ‘other’ field made it difficult to refine and clean up data
    • tracker vs. logger
    • data collection can make you greedy: didn’t want this to be an evaluation of individuals
  • service options, pros and cons (make a table)
  • testing, design, feedback schedule
    • feedback, test, feedback, implement, feedback, revise
    • launched during quiet month: 21 days to form a habit
    • feedback on the wiki for transparency: not only should you respond to feedback when designing a system, but it’s important to be upfront about some critique and feedback so everyone knows the status of the project
  • demo of form
  • demo of data
  • analysis workflow, stats report
    • transparency is important: don’t make your colleagues throw time and energy into a black box
    • primitive workflow makes me spend more time with the data: extra friction
  • next steps

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