Embracing innovative technological advances, systems within council library services are now available which provide the ability to automatically open and close libraries and maintain and control self-service kiosks, public access computers, lighting and security without the need for employees to be on-site.
The technology aims to provide the flexibility to maximise self-service and to maintain and extend opening hours.
It is easy to understand why the move to unmanned libraries is an attractive proposition to councils experiencing significant financial pressures. However, employees provide vital services that cannot be completely replicated by technological solutions.
This guidance note seeks to explore some of the issues that may arise in order to ensure that unmanned libraries are considered and managed effectively. Failure to identify and effectively manage these emerging risks may endanger people’s wellbeing and significantly impact on any projected financial savings through costly adverse incidents and associated compensation payments.
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