The purpose of this study is to evaluate the most used library software in Lahore using a checklist and seek librarians' opinions about them. It also aims to seek librarians' opinions about the most desired and needed features of Integrated Library Software (ILS).
The paper is based on questionnaire survey, interview, document analysis and personal communication. The questionnaire survey was conducted within automated libraries of Lahore, while interviews were conducted with selected librarians from Lahore. Collected data were analyzed both quantitatively and qualitatively to reach conclusions.
A variety of software is being used by the libraries of Lahore. Nor is there available, any standard tool or directory for the selection and evaluation of the software. Evaluation of the software against a checklist reveals the better functionality of Library Information Management System and Library Automation and Management Program than INMAGIC and WINISIS, but librarians were found to be more satisfied with INMAGIC. All the respondents agreed that before selecting any ILS, librarys' actual and perceived needs, available resources and funds should be kept in mind. They also proposed many features of ILS.
The questionnaire survey is limited to the automated libraries of Lahore and focuses on the comparison and evaluation of the most used software only, while selected librarians with good IT skills were chosen for seeking opinions about the most desired ILS features.
The survey results can be helpful to foreign and local vendors of ILS, librarians, higher authorities and other developing countries in selecting and maintaining required software.
It is the first comprehensive study conducted on ILS not only in Lahore, but in Pakistan.
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