Friday, December 1, 2000

Information Systems Planning in Selected Libraries in the Philippines


Course: Master in Library and Information Science

School: University of the Philippines, Quezon City

Subject Area: Information Systems

Year of Graduation: 2000

Research Problem

This study was investigation and documentation of the information systems planning experiences of the selected libraries in the Philippines. It involved four (4) selected types of libraries namely, the National Library (public library), the International Rice Research Institute Library (IRRI) (special library), the Rizal Library of the Ateneo de manila University (academic library), and the Immaculate Conception Academy (ICA) High School Library in Greehills, San Juan (school library). The specific objectives of the study were to: 1) describe the steps/activities in information systems planning by libraries with integrated library systems planning; 2) identify the factors which influenced information systems planning; 3) determine the problems encountered by libraries in information systems planning; 4) highlight the key success factors in undertaking information systems planning; and 5) identify the benefits of information systems planning.


The method used in this research was case study. Data were gathered through the structured interview using a questionnaire. Documentary sources were also looked into. Analytical discussion was the main approach in data analysis and is presented in narrative form.

Findings and Conclusions

The libraries in this study undertook information systems planning with no strict adherence to any formal planning approach. The IRRI Library was primarily guided prescribed by Duval and Main (1992). The Rizal Library went through rigorous planning within the context of consortium. In its own, the ICA Library conducted information systems planning in some of the steps they undertook relates prescribes by some formal planning approaches. The National Library experience may be considered another formal planning approach by itself. Based on the experiences, planning concepts such as steps/activities, motivational factors, problems encountered, key success factors, and benefits of information systems planning were also found applicable. In these libraries, factors, which led to information systems planning, were driven by technology, management, financial considerations and service. The information systems planning of the libraries in this study were successful due to factors internal to the organization such as staff commitment and capability and external factors such as the services of a consultant. The two main problems encountered in information systems planning relates to technology and staff capability for the undertaking. Technology is developing so fast that planners have to constantly keep track of it. Knowledge and skills in planning seems to be inadequate. The benefits derived by libraries in the conduct of information systems planning can be viewed on two levels: the organizational level and the individual staff level. The organizational benefits include: 1) strengthened culture of planning; 2) smooth and successful implementation of the project; 3) clarified goals and directions; 4) potential problems anticipated; 5) decisions drawn wisely; 6) broadened staff horizons; 7) enhanced staff capabilities, skills and competence; and 8) uplifted staff morale. As far as staff benefit is concerned, they specifically gained a broad view of their library and of the value of information technology. The enhancement of skills, capabilities and competence followed after the information systems planning experience.

Source: Journal of Philippine Librarianship (21:89-90) 2000

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