EBSCONET® Usage Consolidation: Providing vital information when and where you need it
“Usage tools should be good at collecting usage data and should provide usage data to those other applications where users are most likely to do their analysis,” says Oliver Pesch, Chief Strategist for e-Resource Access and Management Services, EBSCO Information Services, “We believe usage data should fit into your workflow and not require additional steps.”
That’s why EBSCO has designed EBSCONET® Usage Consolidation. This easy-to-use, affordable tool collects, consolidates, and reports on usage data related to a library’s online collection — and it provides that vital information at the librarian’s point of need. Usage Consolidation allows librarians to …
As libraries deal with the ongoing migration of information from print to electronic formats, one of the main challenges they face is assessing the value of their e-resources. “E-journals are quite different from print, and performing the appropriate analysis of whether an e-journal is offering value or not is a challenge,” Pesch explains. “We talk to a lot of librarians. And one of their main concerns is about handling of usage statistics, not only gathering them but actually using them while doing collection analysis to make decisions about whether or not they should renew a journal, cancel a journal, move to alternate methods of access, and so forth.”
EBSCONET Usage Consolidation addresses this concern by collecting the usage data librarians need and making it available in the library staff’s existing workflow. “We’ve focused on making a product that is affordable, easy to use, and really focused on collecting usage,” Pesch says. “But, most important, our goal was to develop a tool that makes usage data available to the other products within the EBSCO suite.”
Usage Consolidation is designed to integrate with other EBSCO tools, including EBSCONET® Subscription Management and EBSCO A-to-Z®, which help librarians manage, organize, and provide access to their collections. By combining the power of these tools, EBSCO makes usage data available when and where librarians make subscription, e-package, and other e-resource decisions. Integration of EBSCONET Subscription Management and the data in Usage Consolidation allows the librarian to see overall title usage and cost-per-use details in real time. Also in EBSCONET Subscription Management, EBSCO A-to-Z holdings information (including all locations of a title, plus specifics about coverage and embargoes) is instantly accessible — and knowing that a title is available in a database or through another package is valuable input when making collection development decisions. This high level of integration allows librarians to instantly access both usage and holdings in a single interface, putting at their fingertips vital information that will result in well-informed collection choices.
“Imagine librarians making renewal decisions as they’re working renewal lists in EBSCONET Subscription Management,” Pesch says. “They can see immediately if a title is being used, how much it’s being used, if it’s cost-effective by looking at the cost per use. And if it’s questionable, they can look and see if they get that same title in another database and make the decision right there, not having to jump through hoops or go to multiple systems. Anybody we’ve talked to about this has found this extremely exciting.”
EBSCONET Usage Consolidation brings to life EBSCO’s philosophy about usage by providing that information when and where it is needed within a library’s normal workflow and without a high price tag. The ultimate result: librarians will be able to better gauge which resources their users turn to most and, in turn, develop a collection that empowers users by providing the top-quality content they need in order to achieve their research objectives.
EBSCO Offers Options
Another valuable aspect of EBSCONET® Usage Consolidation: Librarians can choose how they will load usage data.
Managing usage data can be a cumbersome, time-consuming task, which means library staffers spend a lot of time entering data. Usage Consolidation customers can choose to manage usage on their own — or they can take advantage of our competitively priced Usage Loading Service. This specialized team will handle the configuring, harvesting, and loading of usage data on behalf of the library staff, freeing them up to improve their collections and assist their users.