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Abingdon School Case Study

For me, Oliver stands out above other library management systems because it offers an unrivalled combination of user-friendliness, reliability and first-class support.

Dr Graham Gardner, Librarian
At a Glance
Chosen Solution
Supported Users
  • Over 1000 students across two libraries
Core Benefits To Users
  • Ease of use
  • Time-saving functionality
  • Reliability and support
Collection Size
  • More than 18,000 books, 500 DVDs and an extensive array of online resources
Library Staff
  • 3

About Abingdon School

Abingdon School

Abingdon is a leading independent day and boarding school for boys aged 11-18. Abingdon Prep School is a day school for boys aged 4 to 13. The two schools together make up the Abingdon Foundation.

The School’s aim is to ensure each boy thrives at Abingdon and, through challenge and opportunity, achieves the most from his potential.

The two libraries at Abingdon are integral to school life. A collection of more than 18,000 books, 500 DVDs and an extensive array of online resources support the academic curriculum, reading for pleasure and independent learning for both students and staff.

Students are welcome to make use of the libraries before and after school and during morning break and lunch. Students also visit the libraries regularly with subject teachers to make use of its resources.

To help them make best use of the extensive information resources available at Abingdon, all students are taught skills in information literacy, focusing on how to identify their information needs, search for information effectively and safely, evaluate the information they find and utilise it appropriately.

Moving to Oliver v5

The school recently changed their library management system from Accessit to Oliver v5 and Dr Graham Gardner, Librarian at the Abingdon School, said that their only regret is not having made the move earlier.

“Since changing my library system to Oliver v5, my only regret is that I didn’t move sooner. It’s made my life a great deal easier and enabled me to provide a better service to students and teachers.”

Making the move to Oliver v5 was much easier and more streamlined than expected and Graham is enjoying the reliability of their new Softlink system.

“The quality and structure of the data exported from my old LMS made the transition to Oliver v5 a significant challenge.”

“Softlink went above and beyond the call of duty in getting the system up and running as quickly as possible and solving any problems that arose.”

“Since the transition, I’ve enjoyed having a reliable LMS that simply does what it’s supposed to; in an ideal world, this wouldn’t be something worth mentioning, but from my experience of other systems, it is.”

Softlink Support

Graham said he also appreciated the support and professional understanding that Softlink’s UK based team provide to them.

“I’ve made very little use of Softlink’s support team, as the system runs so smoothly. On the few occasions I’ve had cause to phone, I’ve always been able to speak to someone right away and 95% of the time the issue has been resolved in the course of the phone call.”

“For me, a particular strength of Softlink support is that the people I speak to - many of whom have a library background - seem to understand how school libraries work, the pressures they’re under and the importance of fixing any problems as quickly as possible.”

Benefits of Oliver v5

Abingdon School library

Graham described how performance and time saving functionality is vital to the Abingdon School library team.

“I manage a very busy school library for an independent secondary school with more than 1,000 students. With no spare time, I need an LMS that saves me time in the performance of core administrative functions such as cataloguing, overdue notices and stock checks. Oliver v5 does that; I’m spending at least two hours a week less attending to Oliver v5 than I did with my old system. That’s time I can make good use of.”

A contemporary and engaging interface that is easy to use and encourages student research was also important.

“Oliver v5 also offers a student interface that from my perspective is easily the best on the market, with a new Amazon-like front page that’s intuitive for both teachers and students.”

“For the first time, I’ve got students actually locating books themselves, because the interface makes it so easy. It’s going to make my life so much easier when the library moves to its new purpose-built facility in mid 2018.”

Graham says that while choosing which library management system to go with was a big decision, he is glad they chose Softlink’s Oliver v5.

“Deciding which LMS to use is one of the most difficult decisions a school librarian has to make. I’m happily recommending Oliver to anyone and everyone who asks, simply because, based on my experience, I think you can’t do better.”

“For me, Oliver stands out above other library management systems because it offers an unrivalled combination of user-friendliness, reliability and first-class support.”

If would like to speak to an Educational Consultant about how Oliver can support your school library email communications@softlinkint.com

Further Reading