London and the South-East on your Bookshelf! SEARCH 25 is almost ready!
The new regional resource discovery tool – providing improved access to the library catalogues of over 50, M25 Consortium members – is currently being perfected before a planned release, coinciding with the new academic year.
The JISC-funded project, improves hugely upon the existing InforM25 service – making it easier to search, locate and obtain resources at most libraries in the consortium, enabling users to benefit from the wealth of materials available to them. As a regional union catalogue, focused in and around the capital, SEARCH25 provides students and academics with an exciting new research tool. It allows users to hop between a vast range of world-renowned large academic institutions and rare specialist collections densely packed in to South-East England.
We have recently finished a series of focus groups, all of which were very positive. Participants provided glowing feedback regarding the clear and clean look of SEARCH25, and praised the ease with which they could navigate the new service. Rather than it being an improvement upon the old inforM25 service, it is essentially a completely different service – SEARCH25 has a plethora of new features, which allow users to narrow down searches and thus find exactly what they need in a minimum of time, without having to trawl through pages of unwanted items. In an age where students and academics are used to searching on line for research materials, SEARCH25 provides a vital link between searching and obtaining: actually getting the book or journal in their hands, and on to their bookshelf to peruse at their leisure.
In order to be ready for the new academic year, we are working on user guides, promotional films, some fun marketing stuff, and many other interesting things to encourage the service to be widely used. These will aim to give the Consortium a renewed sense of identity, and enable all institutions to get behind our exciting new service; enhancing librarian, student and academic life.
Watch this space!
The SEARCH25 Team