Self-issue frees up library staff

News News & events

28 Jan 2013

The traditional library check-out desk could soon be a thing of the past at CPIT’s Madras Street campus following the introduction of Radio Frequency Identifier (RFID) system.

At a touch-screen kiosk that glows an eye-catching blue, library users can check out multiple books simultaneously. If books are taken out the library without being issued, the entry/exit gates will glow red.

Manager of Library and Learning Technology Services Fiona Macdonald said the new technology serves a dual purpose. “The reasons for introducing RFID at Madras Street were twofold. We have to protect our collection in terms of security and we also want to free up library staff so they can come out from behind the check-out desk and spend more time helping students.”

Claire Brocklehurst

Assistant Librarian Claire Brocklehurst tests out the new Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) system in the CPIT Madras Street Library.

The technology was introduced at Trades Innovation Institute three years ago when the new Student Services Building was built, and while the Madras Street library had a self-service option, the new RFID system is faster and easier to use.

The new system brings CPIT into line with best practice in the sector. “Public libraries are increasingly moving away from large issue desks. Instead they have kiosks where users can issue and return books themselves,” Fiona says, which frees up librarians to “do all the things that machines can’t do”.