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Hall library system creates online community survey
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Susan Hollis works on a computer Thursday at the Hall County Public Library in Gainesville. The library is seeking community input into its practices through an online survey. - photo by Erin O. Smith

Take the survey here

The Hall County Library System is seeking community input into its practices.

Director Lisa MacKinney said the system is in the early stages of developing its strategic plan for the next few years, and a survey has been created for input into the plan.

“Our big, reaching goal is to figure out a couple things,” MacKinney said. “If there are people in the community we’re not serving, why is that and is there a way we can reach them and serve them effectively? And for our regular users, how do they want us to use the resources we have.”

MacKinney said she hopes to learn if users want more new books or more periodicals, more online resources or changes to the library branches’ hours.

“Really, we’re just trying to get the information to help us figure out how to do what we do in the most effective way for this community,” she said.

The strategic plan will cover the community’s greatest needs for next three to five years, MacKinney said. The development should have started a few years ago, but the system is getting to it now.

“The last one we did was finished in maybe 2009,” she said. “We’re a little behind schedule because of the recession and changes in administration. So we’re onto our next plan.”

MacKinney said this input will help the library system determine how to best allocate resources to meet those needs.

Questions on the survey include, “Do you consider yourself a regular library user — at least one visit per month?” It also asks users to rate their opinion of library services as “satisfied” or “not satisfied.” These services cover the book collection, library databases, children’s programs, computer access, internet access, staff assistance, website and more.

Finally, the survey has a few open response questions, including “How could your satisfaction with library services be increased most significantly?” and “What programs, activities or library services do you think should be provided that are not currently offered?”

All community members and library users are invited to complete the survey at www.surveymonkey.com/r/NBBYSFJ.

MacKinney said she encourages Hall County residents to consider taking it.

“It gives them a chance to have an input on how their tax dollars are being spent,” she said. “They get to have a real, direct voice.”

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