The Netherlands, Library Kampen
“The Library of Kampen in the Netherlands uses RFID to achieve substantial cost saving in the circulation process and at the same time increased customer service and opening hours”
The Public Library of Kampen is a library with an open and modern design located in the center of Kampen, a country town with about 50,000 inhabitants. Weekly nearly 5,000 people visit the library and over 30% of the population is an active library member. The library began with the introduction of RFID in 2010 to respond to the changing needs of libraries in the society. The primary goal was to establish better and more efficient customer service so that besides providing access to media, the library can also act as a platform for meetings whilst librarians can facilitate more cultural activities.
The Library of Kampen choose for the integrated Librix security and self-service solution of Nedap. “We’ve been working closely with Nedap to create a complete and integrated solution so items can be taken out and returned without human intervention. We wanted this to be combined with a design that fitted our desire for a contemporary and open floor plan”.
A very high value and innovative item in the portfolio of Nedap Librix is the Intelligent trolley. “With the usage of intelligent trolley’s we have created a 'Snuffel' corner; an open jumbled browsing section for patrons to quickly browse and pick-up items that have just been returned”. By using the intelligent trolley concept in this fashion, the process of re-shelving books that are checked-in is optimized.
The obvious gains are in checking out and checking in books and the efficiency gains from the decrease in having to re-shelf less books. With the use of the browsing area, approximately 25% of returned books are checked-out again the same day without having to be re-shelved by the Librarian. Currently this saves Libraries yearly 1 man-hour per 1,000 returned books. With 650,000 returns per year, Kampen Library has been able to cut into the hours spent on reshelving significantly. The usage of the intelligent furniture has also maximized the presence of Librarians on the floor which leads to better interaction with patrons. Where normally speaking staff spend a lot of time in the back office emptying sorters or preparing reshelving actions, all staff is on the ‘shop-floor’ at all times, enabling them to maximize their interaction with the patrons. “We have been able to eliminate staff hours spent on reshelving whilst enhancing our services on the floor. Additionally, we have been able to increasing our opening hours by 8 hours a week, without having to invest in extra man hours.”
To measure their success, Kampen is using the integrated online patron counter in the Nedap Security Gates to report one of the key performance-indicator, the number of Library visitors. This figure shows an increase of 15% and for Kampen public library this is the proof that the open concept and increase in customer service, has created more community engagement.