“There is a better way for everything. Find it.”
Thomas A Edison
Lending out media equipment and hardware for student use requires some rigorous processes. Quite simply it can generate a lot of work, leading to a series of repetitive tasks. Staff find their valuable time being rapidly depleted, leaving too little for other responsibilities such as equipment maintenance or studio management.
But are these seemingly endless tasks really necessary? With staff time being both valuable and scarce, Edison’s advice – see above – is really worth taking. Of course, Edison is best known for inventing the light bulb, but did you know he was also instrumental in creating the first motion picture camera? With such relevance to university media stores and the equipment they provide, it seems all the more appropriate to follow his advice and find a better way of working!
Massive efficiencies in equipment checkout are gained by institutions using the Connect2 software solution. Connect2 lightens the administrative burden for staff. It streamlines how to get things done quickly and painlessly. It saves students time too, allowing them to focus on their projects and studies.
Here are some of the top ways Connect2 helps realize new efficiencies:
- Equipment checkout and check-in workflows are incredibly fast. They are ‘all done in one hit’ as described by our customers. Indeed, Connect2 is designed around this core functionality to ensure services run fast and smoothly without a line of students forming at the desk
- It eliminates paperwork. Loan authorizations can be applied automatically; terms and conditions are agreed to by students online as part of the booking process; your fines policy for overdue or lost items can also be automatically managed
- Equipment borrowing policies are always applied and followed automatically. Rules concerning who can borrow what and for how long are always observed. There is no need for staff to intervene or explain in this regard
- It supports forward planning and preparation. Equipment reservations are possible for the days, weeks or even months ahead (or as far as your rules allow). This really helps with projects and classwork. It also enables staff to prepare kit in advance of checkout and for the day ahead
- Breakages and maintenance are managed within the same system as reservations. Impacted reservations are automatically reviewed and cancelled where necessary
- Bookings are easily copied and repeated. They can also be set up on a recurring basis – especially useful where large orders and long kit lists are involved
- It’s a 24/7 centralized online system: staff can view and manage equipment reservations from anywhere and students are always able to make reservations
- Much less work for managing overdue items: automated emails do the chasing up. Also, the number of overdue items are vastly reduced due to the improved communication and borrower responsibility supported by the system
So Connect2 enables your whole operation to be managed in a much more practical and efficient way. It ensures your department’s investment in valuable equipment is protected, with careful tracking and reporting in place. Simultaneously, it manages adequate access to items that are often critical to students’ academic success.