Interlibrary Loan Committee
Best Practices to Improve Lending Services
Written by the Minitex/MnLINK ILL Committee 2010.
Respondents to the best practices survey regarding lending practices emphasized prompt
updating of interlibrary loan requests. Prompt updating was especially important for
answer not supply (unfilled), renewal responses, will supply and messages.
Timely Updating of Lending Requests
A general trend in response to the best practices for lending libraries is an emphasis
on prompt updating of interlibrary loan requests.
Library staff responding to the survey especially wanted a prompt response when an
item could not be supplied. Those that responded with a timeline
suggested as soon as possible or one to two days.
- Additionally, prompt response was requested for renewal responses.
- Responding to Messages in a timely manner was also identified as a key issue.
Monitor requests in Will Supply status. If the item can't be filled
in a timely manner Answer Unfilled.
Some respondents provided the reason for a prompt response in answering unfilled or will
supply because some patrons are under short timelines to use the items requested and need
to know if this item will be available.
Suggestions for Best Practices for Workflow Improvement
- Pay attention to the Note field for any special instructions.
- Bill for items promptly; borrowing library should pay for items promptly.
- When an item is sent identify if it can be renewed or can't be renewed.
- Clearly marking the due date on the lending slip.
When in doubt as to the format or item to supply ask the borrowing
library for information.
Maintain current interlibrary loan staff information on the
Minitex/MnLINK ILL Policy database, your library
homepage, and your interlibrary loan software.
Keep your ILL policy information updated on the
Minitex/MnLINK ILL Policy database, OCLC ILL, and
your library homepage.
Implement NCIP for VDX libraries wanting to streamline staff workflow. See
NCIP Standard to learn more about NCIP.
Rev Dec 2010
University of Minnesota
Wilson Library, Room 60
309 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455