"Long Lost" Books Project
When the book is in the Library and it’s not borrowed, the status of the book is AVAILABLE. When the book is borrowed, the status of the book is CHECKED OUT. It’s a basic circulation procedure so our members know that, when they see the status AVAILABLE, the book should be on the shelf. If the book has a status AVAILABLE, but it’s not on the shelf and the librarian doesn’t find it, we mark it as MISSING. If the book is not found during the annual inventory, we mark it as LONG LOST.
In early 2021 when we got a lot of questions from the Library members about books in the Library catalog with the status “LONG LOST”. It became obvious that there was no workflow about reordering or un-displaying these books from the Library catalog, they were just staying there, marked as LONG LOST, nobody deciding about the next step.
In April 2021 the brainstorming to change this situation was done and this is the new protocol decided:
- Run the report of books with the status LONG LOST from each adult Library collection
- Go through the record sets, one book at a time and decide should we reorder the book or un display it from the catalog observing the following criteria:
- Date of the item record’s status date change
- Circulation statistics (popularity)
- Publishing date of the book
- Author of the book
- Subject of the book
- Do we have a second copy or edition of the book
The work progress of this project was tracked using the Excel spreadsheet.
The project was finished in September 2022 and in total we processed approximately 2200 books. Some of them were reordered, and if not reordered, they were undisplayed from the Library catalog.
The protocol for the new LONG LOST books (mentioned above) is now incorporated into the inventory workflow so the “hole” in the work process is now closed and this will result in a more organized and up to date Library catalog.