By Kathleen Juliano, Head of Interlibrary Loan
In February 2012, the Interlibrary Loan office introduced a new Interlibrary Loan system, ILLiad,
to the Drew community. The office had been using ILLiad internally for lending books to other libraries, since the summer of 2011.
ILLiad is a system used by many libraries throughout the country to automate the ILL process and increase efficiency for both the ILL office and the users. Students, faculty and staff create an ILLiad account with their Drew user ID and password. From their account, they can request books and articles from other libraries. PDFs of articles and book chapters are delivered directly to their ILLiad account, and may be viewed directly from there. Another nice feature is that when searching WorldCat and some other academic databases such as ATLA and Academic Search Premier, items can be requested directly from the database without having to fill out the entire request form.
Feedback from students and faculty has been positive. One student wrote: “how wonderful the new system is…. I love it!” A staff member said: “Very, very cool! Thank you Drew Librarians!” The reference librarians have been including ILLiad in their reference consultations and information literacy classes. Four short videos explaining the ILLiad ordering process are available on the Interlibrary Loan page of the Library website.
For the Interlibrary Loan office, the new system has been a learning process, but has already increased efficiency. The system can be customized for the specific needs of each library. The staff spends less time processing renewals, sending emails, filing paperwork, and submitting requests, allowing them to spend more time tracking down obscure materials needed by faculty and students for their research. On the lending side, sending articles to other libraries is a faster process with ILLiad.
The ILLiad system has much potential, and the ILL staff plans to continue working with the software to further streamline and enhance the ILL process in the future.
— This article originally appeared in the Spring 2012 issue of Visions, the Library Newsletter