Creating physical facilities and environment for marketing quality library and information services

Sridhar, M. S. Creating physical facilities and environment for marketing quality library and information services., 1995 . In IIS-BC Workshop on "Information Resources and Services Management for the REC Librarians" organized by Institute for Information Studies and British Council, Bangalore, India, 6-17 March 1995. (Unpublished) [Presentation]


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English abstract

A Library is as good as it is displayed and exposed to users. It should not be conceived as a hidden treasure or a passive collection of reading material. The physical facilities and environment consisting of location, building, layout, furniture, equipment, etc., significantly contribute in enhancing the quality of services. Physical environment not only plays an important role in marketing the services of libraries, but also affects users behaviorally as well as psychologically. Any effort to create physical facilities and environment should take into account the unique needs and ways of seeking, gathering, using and communicating information by the target users. In other words, understanding the users in terms of their characteristics, styles, idiosyncrasies, needs, opinions, priorities, preferences, evaluations, attitudes and behaviour is essential. A number of findings in the areas of user research provide clear and direct input for creating appropriate physical facilities and environment. Quality is intangible, relativistic, indivisible and having a tendency to deteriorate as far as services are concerned. QC and SQC are concepts more applicable to profit-oriented organisations with production of goods. In service institutions, quality is elusive concept and it is difficult to achieve and measure. It is only long-term total customer satisfaction which has to be considered in service institutions. Measuring satisfaction itself is nifty. It is necessary to identify the factors which customers consider important in appraising a service. However, there are certain ways to tackle the problem of quality in service institutions. Some tips to improve service quality are discussed. Before attempting to create physical environment and facilities in libraries to gear up the quality services it is necessary to identify and understand the nature and characteristics of services. The traditional goods oriented marketing is not appropriate for marketing of services. Characteristics of service organisations like intangibility (Pulpability), non—inventoriability (Perishability), variability and inseparability of production and consumption of services call for an extended marketing mix with emphasis on physical evidence, people (service personnel), process, PR and social marketing. The role of ‘Place’ and ‘Physical evidence’ in the new strategy for marketing of services is emphasised here in relation to the need for creating physical facilities and environment. General issues relating to marketing of services are also discussed. The task of creating physical facilities and environment involves broadly pre-planning activities followed by preparation of a programme, allocation and utilisation of space, selection of equipment, furnishing and moving into facility. The pre-planning activities include gathering information (including internal information) through visiting other libraries, discussing with colleagues and experts, attending seminars, exhibitions, conferences and reading literature. The proposal should incorporate general features like objectives, type, status and location of the library, nature of users and use of library, special construction features of the facility, statistics regarding existing library, and composition of planning team, resources required, the implementation schedule, etc. In addition to providing some practical tips of the whole exercise, discusses the other steps like space estimation allocation and utilisation, furnishing, lighting and sign systems for libraries. Lastly, a case study from ISRO Satellite Centre (ISAC) library is presented with emphasis on various practical aspects of creating physical facilities and environment.

Item type: Presentation
Keywords: library planning, physical planning, library building, marketing of services , service quality, lighting, furniture
Subjects: K. Housing technologies. > KF. Planning, Design, Removal.
Depositing user: Dr. M S Sridhar
Date deposited: 30 Oct 2007
Last modified: 02 Oct 2014 12:09


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