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Surrey council saves £300,000 a year on library supply chain costs

Antony Savvas

Surrey County Council is set to save over £300,000 a year from the cost of running its libraries since deploying the DS OpenGalaxy information management system.

The electronic data interchange (EDI) system is being used for ordering, invoicing and delivery for all items bought through Surrey's sole book supplier.

DS, Surrey County Council and book supplier Askews have worked together to create the system.

The team in Surrey purchase stock for 52 static libraries and five mobiles, and handle around 230,000 items in a year. The stock ordering process has saved time and reduced administration overheads.

The team now carry out stock selection online and place orders directly via the Askews website. EDI automatically creates ready-to-approve orders in the acquisitions system by picking up the information entered to place the order.

There are no separate forms to fill in and no re-keying of data. Once approved, EDI alerts the supplier to pick the stock and ship.

DS's EDI service is also used to receive invoice and delivery note information from Askews, automatically updating the acquisitions system at every stage.

As a result, Surrey staff no longer need to check off books as they arrive, or enter any data at this stage. They simply unpack the books, then scan and shelve them.

EDI services from DS use an intermediary service provided by Nielsen Book Net, which ensures that the system can be used effectively with a wide range of book suppliers.





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