Any methodology that only looks internally at existing provision is doomed to failure. Local unmet requirements need to be investigated using any available local intelligence gathering – community profiling, front line staff who are tuned in to what is happening in the community, maintaining awareness of and contact with local organisations, and speaking to patrons.
All of these sources should be built in to collection provision to ensure that it is relevant to patron demands.
The methodology therefore advises that, in parallel with adoption of the structured EBSM framework, experimentation with purchases should be carried out regularly, based on the findings from local intelligence gathering exercises.
Collections that are selected to address these assumed unmet needs should have their subsequent performance tracked to test the success of the experiments.
Some clear outcomes from this will be that particular items or subject areas will not be subsequently progressed for regular spend due to the apparent lack of interest in material purchased, whereas others will be incorporated into a library’s collection spending plan due to the resounding success of the experiment.