Why would you purchase relatively new library software when there are other tried-and-true options that have been on the market for ten to twenty years?
Simple Little Library System is a dynamic, user-friendly library management system that is accessible from any device, anywhere.
The life cycle of computer software products is more prominent than that of other goods. In the last thirty years, Microsoft’s operating systems have evolved from DOS to Windows 95, 2000, XP, 7, and now Windows 10. This holds true for library management systems as well. While some manufacturers successfully migrate from one platform to another, others do not. Why would you then purchase new library software? What characteristics should a library management system possess? Does the vendor’s durability indicate that they are adaptable? If a vendor has been in business for thirty years, it may imply that it has successfully adapted to new platforms. However, what is going behind the scenes?
A system that has existed for at least thirty years may have a legacy data structure that is continuously modified to accommodate new needs. The outcome is something that is not streamlined and has grown upside down, but is yet “made to function.” Upgrades may be complicated and are occurring less often. Long-standing systems may be analogous to tankers in that they are “tough to turn around.” Why, therefore, do some procurement managers and librarians hesitate to choose a relatively new system?
People are typically comforted by the fact that a system has been around for a long time and that they know someone else who has it. They consider this to be the “safer” option. However, is it? Will this product be nearing the end of its life cycle and need replacement sooner? Will it be compatible with the subsequent software platform? Will it quickly outgrow their needs? Will there be difficulties? In a product’s life cycle, these buyers are referred to as the “late majority” or “laggards.” Consequently, what are the benefits of being a “early adopter” or “innovator”?
New library systems are constructed from the ground up and lack cumbersome old data structures. Maintenance is simplified and streamlined.
By choosing a method that is fresh to the market, the buyer may be certain that their selection will stay longer. They will earn a larger return on investment over the long run. New library systems are constructed from the ground up and lack tangled legacy data structures, making maintenance more streamlined and less complicated. In turn, this reduces expenses for consumers. The library may simply apply updates individually, or increasingly have all upgrades performed automatically as part of a Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription.
New systems have been built to meet contemporary needs and to take use of the most advanced technology. By their very nature, early library systems tended to be technology-focused. A user- or human-centered approach is increasingly prevalent in modern systems. The ‘usability’ principle of simple and streamlined design is used by Bailey Solutions to its products, allowing the user to navigate between tasks with as few clicks as possible. This decreases dissatisfaction among library executives, saves training costs, and shortens lines at the circulation desk.
In addition, because to the inclination of certain buyers to be suspicious of new items, suppliers would provide discounts to entice enough ‘innovators’ to acquire the product. This increases the vendor’s market share and, therefore, their trustworthiness. There is an obvious financial benefit for an inventor to purchase a product at such low starting costs. They will pay less for the system and receive the vendor’s everlasting support.
Purchasers must have trust that they are purchasing the optimal system. Have confidence in your ability to pick the correct system for you, even if no one you know has it. Request a trial of the system and put it through its paces; nevertheless, do not purchase a system just because everyone else has it. You may regret following the crowd in the long run. You may pay less to obtain more – a new system at an initial price with user-centered navigation, reduced training and maintenance costs, and which will outlive the old fossilized systems and show a long-term wise investment.