Re: Last minute customers

Mary Bonhomme (
Sat, 14 Apr 2001 09:18:58 -0700 (PDT)

Before our video collection was placed in the open stacks area, we shut
down video checkout 30 minutes before the library closed. That gave us time
to clean up all our paperwork (we still circulated with hand charges then),
close out the cash register and make sure everything was in order. Our
patrons were used to that as we had never done it differently. However,
cutting back on time at the end of the day when you have not done it before
could be a public relations problem. Now that all our materials are in open
stacks we allow checkout up until closing. At that point, however, we lock
the doors so that people still in the library and in the process of leaving
cannot get in.

Mary Bonhomme
Chicago Public Library

Michael Vollmar-Grone wrote:

> During recent months the number of last minute customers has increased
> dramatically. Since we're a closed-stack public library video
> collection, this has necessitated 10 minutes or so of daily overtime for
> the staff.
> How do other libraries handle the last-minute onslaught? One of the
> staff's suggestions is to stop checking out materials during the last 15
> minutes of the day, only accept returning items. Another proposal is to
> increase the number of staff on duty. A third thought is to turn off
> most of the lights and computers 15 minutes before closing.
> Can anyone offer methods that work and still maintain a welcoming
> atmosphere? Thanks!
> --
> Michael Vollmar-Grone
> Amos Memorial Public Library
> 230 East North Street
> Sidney, Ohio 45365
> "Your Unique Video Source"

Mary Bonhomme
Head, Media Express
Chicago Public Library
(312) 747-4103