The purpose of this paper is to expand the information technology concept of toil by applying it to system analysis for academic libraries. System mapping and toil definitions are used to measure costs and benefits of maintaining library information systems. The concept of toil provides a vehicle to shape the decisions made by managers when refining or building new library system infrastructure.
Using a system map of all library systems, the definition of toil was used to identify highly manual or high toil systems. This mapping was used to illuminate the need to migrate or eliminate certain library systems to managers in order to reduce the amount of toil undertaken by library employees.
Two library systems were identified for migration to more automated systems and two library systems were recommended for elimination in order to reduce the overall amount of toil present in the library systems ecosystem.
Using system mapping and toil definitions are helpful in identifying and relaying the cost of outdated systems to library managers.
This paper provides library managers an easy way to assess the ecosystem and efficiency of library systems without the need for technical expertise. It also expands the use of information technology concepts into the field of academic libraries.
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