I recently interviewed Adams Public Library Systems Administrator Rich Weiland about the new and exciting ‘Hot Spot’ program at his library. Below is the highlights from our interview.
PAULA: Can you give some background on how the program was created?
RICH: The service actually stemmed from an email of the offering from Sprint for an affordable unlimited data plan for WIFI hotspots.
We had a meeting with the Sprint sales rep. and decided after our conversation to get ten hotspots to be able to circulate to our patrons. This means that our patrons can ‘check out the internet’. If they do not have internet at home or where ever it is needed, they can check out one of our hotspots for a week, and have unlimited, unrestricted internet in their home.
The initial thoughts to this service was helping our students in the community that do not have internet at home, be able to do their homework in the comfort of their own home with the technology provided to them by the schools.
This service has also been utilized by patrons that had to be on the road traveling away from home and work. And of course it is also being used for recreational use by patrons within their homes.
We also have a service that manages our devices, should one ever not be returned, get lost, or break. We can take care of any of these issues within our building.
PAULA: How much did this program cost?
RICH: There is a recurring cost of $35 per month per device. We currently have 10 devices…so approx. $350 per month
PAULA: How many staff members are needed for this service?
RICH: None for ongoing service. The initial setup of the service took only one, sometimes two staff members. Currently though, it is only the responsibility of the circulation desk staff, as the devices are kept behind the desk for security reasons.
PAULA: What was the program’s biggest success?
RICH: The ongoing popularity of the hotspot service is our biggest success. Today, there is an average of 25 holds at any one time for this service.
PAULA: What do you wish you had known before starting this project?
RICH: How well this would be accepted by our patrons. this has been a very successful venture for the library. With very little marketing of this service, our patrons are excited to see that the library continues to serve the needs of the community.
PAULA: Can this program be reproduced at another library?
PAULA: Is it ok to contact you for additional information?
PAULA: What is your email address?
This blog post was written by Paula Newcom, Professional Development Librarian. For more information, contact the Professional Development Office at (317) 232-3697 or email email@example.com.