Idaho Commission for LibrariesAddress: 325 W State St., Boise, ID 83702
Phone: (208) 334-2150 | In-State Toll Free: (800) 458-3271
Printed from the Idaho Commission for Libraries website: http://libraries.idaho.gov
Community Assessment: What Does Your community Want?
Boise Public Library's Fall 2011 survey to learn more about library service needs in the Boise area is complete and contains interesting insights into what residents like about the library as well as potential areas for change. 1156 residents completed the survey (893 users and 263 non-users)
One aspect that caught my eye is that non-users do not always understand what resources the library offers. This is especially true if they have not been in a library recently. For example, three of the four "highest interest or potential services" selected by non-users- checkout DVDs and CDs, downloadable ebooks, and public computers- are currently available at the Boise Public Library.
This highlights to me the importance of knowing your community's needs before beginning, revising, or ending services. While Boise Public Library's survey was quite comprehensive, reliable information can be obtained via surveys distributed in the library and community, focus groups, or conversations with both users and non-users. You may discover the solution is better communication about what resources and services the library currently provides instead of creating new ones.