Bodleian Libraries Reader Survey 2016 shows increased reader satisfaction

7 June 2016

The Bodleian Libraries most recent Reader Survey has revealed that reader satisfaction with the Libraries' overall performance has increased since the last reader survey, which was conducted in 2012.

Interestingly, readers' expectations have also increased.

The Bodleian Libraries Reader Survey 2016 ran in February and asked all members of the University of Oxford and all other Bodleian cardholders to share their feedback Image of logo for Bodleian Libraries Reader Surveythrough an online survey. Almost 3500 readers took part in the survey with the response rate from current members of the University 13 percent higher this year than in 2012.

Readers were asked a number of questions about their overall satisfaction with the Libraries service and were asked to give a satisfaction score on a scale of 1 to 9. On average, readers rated the overall quality of the Libraries' service at 7.6, a slight increase on the 2012 survey results of 7.5.

The analysis shows that satisfaction levels for the Bodleian's collections, Libraries staff and physical library spaces, have increased since the 2012 survey, with Libraries staff the highest performing area. However readers' expectations have also increased in these areas so there is more work to be done to ensure that the Libraries is keeping pace with the changing needs and expectations of its users.

The survey assessed readers' expectations by asking them to rate not only their current level of satisfaction but also the lowest level of service they would find acceptable along with the level they ideally want. This information helps the Bodleian to better understand the relative importance of different aspects of the Libraries' service to different types of readers, for example undergraduates, postgraduates, academic staff and external readers and readers in different subject areas.

'We'd like to thank all our readers who took part in the survey,' said Frankie Wilson, Head of Assessment at the Bodleian Libraries. 'We are pleased with the results but, of course, are constantly looking to improve the service we provide. The most important thing is that the results shine a light on the needs and expectations of different groups of readers, which will help us to make tailor-made improvements rather than a one-size-fits-all approach.'

The Bodleian has already taken action on a number of specific issues that readers raised in the 2016 survey, for example by addressing the need for improved lighting in the Education Library and requests for more height-adjustable desks at the Radcliffe Science Library and a microfilm reader in the Weston Library's Mackerras Reading Room. A full list of actions that have been taken can be found on the Reader Survey You said, We did page.

The results will also be used to inform the Libraries' Strategic Plan for 2017-2022. Analysis of the results is ongoing and further results will be released in the coming months on the Reader Survey pages.

Although the Reader Survey is now closed, the Bodleian is continually seeking feedback from readers and asks readers to be as specific as possible so that their feedback can be used to make the targeted improvements. Visit the Feedback webpage to find out how you can share your comments.

View more information about the results from the Reader Survey 2016.

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