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E-book and e-audio books at Sutherland Shire Libraries

Collection Development of eBook and eAudiobooks


Sutherland Library OverDrive eBook and eAudiobook usage increased in 2014/2015.

31,151 checkouts were recorded for OverDrive titles which represents a 25% increase in loans from the previous year.  eBook loans (22,182) outstripped eAudiobook downloads (8,969), and downloads onto mobile devices such as phones and tablets were the preferred method of use.  As at 30 June 2015, there were 4,135 eBooks and 2,690 eAudiobooks in the OverDrive collection and 7,430 library members used the service from July 2014 to the end of June 2015. 1,154 of these were new registrations on OverDrive. Selection of titles is done by up to 4 staff to get a good selection and as it is time consuming checking for duplicates.


Sutherland Library has recently taken up a subscription to BorrowBox mainly due to the content offered by Bolinda.  Customers are increasingly asking for recently published best sellers which is problematic due to publisher’s reluctance to develop an adequate library lending model.  The launch of BorrowBox is due within the next few weeks to give staff time to become familiar with the downloading process.  Access links for customers will be available on the library website very soon.   Publicity for this new service will include an article in the library e-newsletter, local press if possible, Facebook posts and vendor promotional material on display at each library as well as staff promotion directly to customers.

One Click

The Sutherland Library One Click subscription was purchase mainly for use by Home Library customers. In the 2014/2015 year 3,262 titles were downloaded from One Click.  Of this total 2,044 of the downloads were to Navigators for use by Home Library customers.  One Click is listed on the library website next to Overdrive but non Home Library downloads remain about only 1/3 of total One Click loans.


Sutherland Library has a collection of eReference books and databases.  Selection is based on having a general suite to cover a wide range of subjects 24/7 with remote access.  Promotion of these resources is via the website, in-house flyers and by staff promoting directly to customers.


While not really an e-book the uptake of zinio digital magazines has been pleasing. During the first year of taking a subscription in 2013/2014 loans were 16, 747 rising to 26,414 in the 2014/2015 year.  Staff promotion has played a large part in the success of zinio.

Concerns about eBook and eAudiobook subscriptions continue to be content, an in adequate library lending model, multiple platforms and contractual arrangements.

Audio and eBooks links and information on library website

Information and links to download points are on the library website. For examples of what this looks like see here and here.  The vendor Help link is also on the library website as well as information on how to get a library card to use resources and library contact details for help. 

Titles accessible in library catalogue

Titles are searchable in the catalogue and there is a link to the relevant platform.

The library buys the catalogue records if they are not included in the price.

The Link to downloadable version takes customers to the Borrow page for the resource.

Customers then use the relevant app to download the title. There is also a Need a library card link to information on how to get a Sutherland Library membership card.

We hope in the future to enable a direct download link in our catalogue but this is a paid add-on in our Library Management System.

eBook 2015


Models of influence : 50 women who reset the course of fashion / Nigel Barker

Barker, Nigel,

Link to downloadable version

Staff Training

Sutherland Library have ipads and android tablets available for staff use at 6 of our branches. Staff are also able to salary sacrifice a tablet for personal use and time to explore how library resources are accessed is encouraged during work time. Over time is has become evident that each branch has champions who are willing to help other staff and customers to use online resources.  Staff training sessions are organised on a regular basis though it is not possible to free up all staff at one time so there is usually a degree of ontraining by those who attended training. Staff from Sutherland are able to visit any branch that needs extra help or doesn’t have time to explore. 


Promotion of audio and e-Books is done by in-house flyers, showcasing resources in our monthly e-newsletter, in Council’s Our Shire magazine delivered to residents electronically or by letterbox drop, at events and by staff promoting directly to customers in the library.

Customer training

Many customers are able to access resources with no staff intervention. The library runs monthly technology sessions on various topics including e-resources. Staff at all locations are able to help customers with e-resources at most times of the enquiry being made.  Sutherland, Menai and Engadine Librarys offer one on one computer help on designated days. Customers are able to book a half hour session with staff to help them with any device and this includes help downloading e-resources. 

In summary – let staff play to get comfortable with devices and resources, use your champions to help and promote to customers at any opportunity. 

This is a guest blog post by Angela Livingstone, Coordinator - Learning, Literacy and Leisure, Sutherland Shire Libraries