Prior to rolling out an existing system to a new user base, EBSCO commissioned A21 to conduct a usability study of the system. The study was comprised of an in-depth analysis of 6 months of usage data, interviews with technology and support teams, user task-completion and ethnographic studies with users, and A/B user testing of existing vs. proposed menu structures. A21 identified opportunities for improvement of the user experience, and produced a list of actionable, prioritized enhancements to increase the adoption of, and confidence in the existing system among existing users, before rolling out to their new user base.
The Bodleian Libraries holds well over 20,000 manuscripts and serves hundreds of thousands of readers from around the world. Access to over half of the manuscript collections in the Bodleian is effectively hidden to scholars because they are not described online, or those descriptions are not well indexed. In 2016, the A21 team reviewed the existing cataloguing practices for manuscripts at the Bodleian Libraries. The aims of the project were to determine a suitable workflow and technical architecture that would both promote findability and allow use by cataloguers with a wide range of technical skills.
Conducted a worldwide market review of manuscript cataloguing practices
Led a detailed usability assessment of existing systems
Made recommendations for improved workflows and technical architecture
Designed a sustainability plan around training, communications and standards