16th April 2014
Diplomat™ Self Service

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) in Preston was founded in 1828 as the Institution for the Diffusion of Knowledge. From state-of-the-art facilities and world class teaching and support to help undergraduate students succeed, to providing world-leading Astrophysics researchers with the opportunity to work with NASA and photograph the Sun, UCLan has it all.

UCLan has evolved over the years to become a world class institution, recognised with its inclusion in the 2010 QS World Rankings – the first Modern University in the UK to gain this status. With 11 areas of research judged ‘world leading’ in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise, UCLan has the global recognition of its peers, with a focus on applied research, including the identification of human remains in mass disasters, the development of new sign languages, and a variety of health-related research initiatives that are helping to change lives around the world.

To heighten student’s experience at the university, UCLan decided to loan out laptops, so they purchased six LapSafe® Mentor™ trolleys to store and charge their devices. Initially, library staff would sign the laptops in and out for students, fill out a booking form and keep a manual log. However, this became time consuming for staff as they were unable to fulfil other duties, and it was also very hard to keep track of who had loaned the device and for how long. Library staffing hours are 8am – 5pm, so students were restricted to what time period they could loan a device. The university recognised that this was becoming a problem and approached LapSafe® to see if they could recommend a more suitable loaning system.

LapSafe® Products have been the market leaders in managing storage and charging solutions for devices in volume, and had recently designed and manufactured the Diplomat™ LMS self-service loan and charging lockers for laptops, netbooks, tablets and iPads.

The university had used LapSafe® for years and wanted to stay with a brand that they trusted. After consultation, the university decided on a 72 bay unit, linking-in to the Library Management System, Talis.

Ian Hey, Print and Buildings Manager at UCLan said, “We have 30,000 students and our laptops are always being used. We went from having 300 laptops and having to individually loan them out; this used up a lot of staffing hours having to fill out a booking form and was also hard to track. We now have 72 laptops in use with the Diplomat™ LMS and find that this is much more beneficial for us. We are now getting the full potential from our investment into LapSafe and the students prefer the ability to be able to self-loan a laptop whenever they need. We chose LapSafe® as they were the best on the market and the unit was the most aesthetically pleasing.”

Ian Hey continued, “The Diplomat™ has changed the way our library works, it is now in 24 hour use and students can now use resources whenever they need to. It is easy to use due to the large touch screen display; the staff also like it as the unit tracks who has loaned the laptop, when they loaned it and for how long. The Diplomat™ also flags the loan and that it is still on their account if they have not plugged it in when returning, prompting the students to return the laptop correctly.”

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