Improvements Which Can Be Made In Library Information Technology Essay
Market Research is basically a process of gathering information to allow better understanding and decision making which is more reliable than assumptions and which provides positive information to help minimize risks and avoid mistakes. The market research was carried out on libraries of two different places to better understand the necessities and needs of the users who come to library.
The market research study was carried out to explore the use of libraries. The research was set up in two different locations, one city and another village. The questionnaires were given to the Assistants of the local libraries to get a fairly rough idea about the views of the users. The Assistants handed out the questionnaire to the library users and were told them to take it home and were asked to complete the forms and get it back when they visit the library next time. The samples were collected from the library users and it was recorded that the village users more often visit library and take the advantages of the books and facilities of the library, as compared to city users as the figures says that 405 questionnaire were completed out of 745 by city users and 398 forms were completed out of 460 questionnaire by village users. Larger the number of people in a sample survey more accurate the result of it. This is one of the rules of market research. Therefore it shows from the survey that village user likes to visit library more than that of city users.
OBJECTIVES OF THE RESEARCH:-
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The main objective of this research is to investigate the use of library in respected locations. This is done by knowing the needs and views of the library users and collecting the feedbacks out of them by giving them the questionnaires to fill. The decision will be made on basis of the needs of the users together with the library owners thoughts.
The research method used in the sample survey is quantitative. Quantitative in terms of the services provided by the library.
The sample structure is achieved in the form of questionnaire.
The questionnaire is made by both the types of question set that is open-ended and pre-coded. In open-ended questions the users are allowed to give their views with total freedom i.e. they can give the answers the way they want and in pre-coded questions the choices are given from which the users have to choose any choice among them.
SUMMARY OF FINDINGS:-
In a sample survey users were asked about the number of times they have visit the library, how they visit, what services they use in the library and according to them what can be the improvements they would like to see in near future. Also their personal details were asked in order to know what type of crowd visits the library so according to those, changes can be done for better improvements in the library facilities.
Frequency of visit to library:-
From the research or we can say according to survey people visit library quite often i.e. once a month or more in totality(42%) out of which village users visit more often (50%) than city users(34%).
The time period of 4-6 times a year is second in positioning i.e. 30% and less often is only 4% which describes that people do visit library on regular basis. Based on the findings graphs been plotted.
Way of travelling to library:-
40% of the total user's travel "on foot" to the library from which 61% are village users and 18% are city users who take the walking route for reaching the library.
Car travels are more in city (48%) as compared to village (24%) and people rarely use trains for travelling in village (1%) as well as in city (8%).
Bicycle travelers are also less in comparison to other options and the percentage of bicycle travelers are same in village and city (5%).
Services used in library:-
Borrowing books and returning items are quite frequent on day to day basis in libraries service record. There is a difference of just 2% between city and village users in borrowing books and 7% of difference between returning the items where the city users lead by 7% (40%).
Internet usage is less in village (9%) in comparison to city (18%). And the usage in totality is also less (14%).
Newspaper reading and magazine reading is more in village (34%) as that in city (19%).
The least preferred service in library is use of family history materials.
Improvements which can be made in library:-
There was an open-ended question in the survey regarding the improvements of the library, where the users were asked about their views. As it was an open-ended question there was more than one answer for the question and the answers were grouped together in different categories. The suggestions were as follows:-
26% users of the whole population of library thinks that there should be more CDs and records collection available in library and the major thought was from village users (30%).
Some of them thought of providing refreshments will be a good idea (22%). Few thought of getting a better car parking space (24%) .This was a thought which affects more to city users as they use car more than that of village users. Therefore the suggestions percentage was high among city users (37%).
Few gave a suggestion of providing longer opening hours (23%).
And many of the users didn't provide any suggestion in both the location.
Ratings of library:-
The library ratings were also considered in terms of location, range of books, helpful staff, comfort level and opening hours.
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The location was nearly very good for the city (3.4) and slightly better for village (4.2).
The range of books were very good in city (3.9) but it was somewhere between good and poor in village (2.7).
The staff is quite helpful in both city (4.0) as well as village (3.9).
The comfort level is very good in city (4.1) but it's below average in village (2.2).
Opening hours are better in city (3.8) as compared to village (2.8).
Personal details of the library users:-
Personal details were also recorded from each user.
Female user are more than male users i.e. 57% of female users are there whereas only 43% males use the library services out of which 64% female are from village and 50% from city and 50% males from city and 36% males from village.
Age group of 60 and above people uses the library facilities more (40%) and their number is more in village (48%). Youngsters like the age group of 18-30 visits least to the library in which 36% are from city and 20% from village.
The people who are working visit the library very less (17%). The students who are in full time education goes to library quite often (30%) and the retried people visits the library the most (37%) majorly village retire d's (42%).
The car owners are larger in number (65%) and very few who does not own a car (35%).
Comments on data collection method:-
The data collection methods used is a questionnaire based survey in which both the types of questions were recorded i.e. open-ended and pre-coded. Open ended question can be complicated at times to distribute and get the correct answers, because users give answers in form of paragraph but it's more suitable because user can then express all the views he has on the particular product. Whereas pre-coded questions have a set of choices for every question and user has to choose any one or more than one from the given choices. The research method use in this data collection is quantitative; therefore there are many advantages and disadvantages of the quantitative research method.
Quantitative method generally obtains reliable, accurate and stable data which permits or helps in making correct decision based on the information.
The data which is collected through research is been shown and interpreted in statistical form.
Quantitative research gathers information in standardized form across a relatively large sample of cases and the sets of individual responses are then added together to provide overall figures. Standardization is essential so that it can have an individual data set which can be added together.
Gathering responses from the large groups are easier because of the type of collection method and good interaction between the distributors and users.
In this type of data collection the interpretation can be considered wrongly and if this happens there is no explanation from the researcher side as the users told to take the form home, fill it and bring it back when they visit the library next time.
This can lead to the uninterested response from the users and the collection of data can be widely affected.
Comments on sample:-
As the samples are collected from two different locations it is been found that the users from the village are more active than that of city users and the sample is large enough to create a proper research from the data.
Comments on reliability level of findings:-
Reliability is normally assessed in terms of probability. The sample which is been collected in this survey is done through questionnaire and it is a quantitative method of analysis and therefore it can't be as reliable as qualitative analysis is, as there can be a wrong interpretation of data and users won't take the questionnaire very seriously and won't be able to understand the main requirement or the importance of the research. This can lead to the limited data collection out of which report cannot be made properly. Therefore level of reliability is very less as compared to the qualitative analysis.
Improvements based on research findings:-
Based on the research finding there are lots of ways in which the services and the facilities can be improved. Firstly, longer openings hours which was suggested by 23% of total users. Longer opening hours can help in using the benefits of the library more. Recently published books in the market should be available more. The number of seats should be increased and should increase the comfort of the seats i.e. make it better so that the users feel comfortable and relaxed in the library. CDs and records collection should be increased. Providing refreshment is one more alternative to keep the user's comfortable and better car parking can be made essentially for city users as they use car quite frequently to travel.
Suggestions for the improvement of research method:-
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As in this survey the research method used is quantitative and questionnaire was created to get feedbacks from users, one important thing to be taken care of when researching via questionnaire is that we have to make sure that it's been completed by maximum possible users because greater accuracy requires larger sample size. For example to achieve 95% probability that data is accurate to 5%, a sample of around 400 is needed but to increase accuracy to 3%, the sample size needed rises to 1000 i.e. 2% more accurate but sample size is two and half times as large - and therefore two and half times more expensive to achieve. Therefore there's a need to balance level of accuracy against cost. Another improvement can be in data collection method itself that is online survey for the users so that maximum number of people can complete of fill the forms in order to help in the improvement of library services. Things which must be taken care of when creating a questionnaire are the questions should not be ambiguous, it shouldn't be over complex, should not have inappropriate or limited response options, shouldn't have biased response options and the question shouldn't suggest the answer itself.
The study says that the person of village uses the services and facilities of library more than that of city people. There are lots of examples in the survey which shows that the village users are more in number and they use the facilities and the services to the fullest. Although the services provided in villages are not as good as that of services provided in city still they manage with the services. In the survey many improvements are suggested by the users in order to get better facilities and provide good services.
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