City of Austin Performance Report 2015-16

Internet Sessions Per Capita 

Measure Description
Internet sessions per capita is a standard indicator in the library industry. This measure represents the total number of wired and wireless network connection sessions to the Library's network at all branch locations and the Central Library. By dividing the total number of sessions by the population, the Library has a simple indicator of how much “repeat” business it receives.
Calculation Method
This measure is calculated by taking the total session logins to wired public computers and wireless connections to wireless access points for all library locations, and dividing it by the corresponding full-purpose population figure.
FY 2015-16 Results
The goal for this measure was established at 1.36. The FY 2015-16 result fell short at 1.13.
Assessment of Results
This indicator is a function of the number of wired and wireless internet sessions connected at Austin Public Library (APL) facilities in relation to population. Therefore the total number of sessions must increase each year in direct proportion to population or a resulting decrease in the measure will be realized. Over the past four-year time period that this indicator has been reported against an established target, the number of wired and wireless internet sessions at APL facilities increased 1.0%, from 988,540 to 1,028,219, while the city’s population increased 10.1%, from 842,743 to 913,917. With population growth outpacing that of internet sessions over that time period by a factor of 10, internet sessions per capita declined 8.1%. In addition, this measure does not capture personal devices connecting to APL’s websites from locations different than a library facility. This is further exacerbated by the prolific growth in personal devices with affordable data plans, reliable connections, greater bandwidth, and ubiquitous free Wi-Fi. Consequently, this culmination of factors make attaining the FY 2016-17 goal of 1.27 doubtful.
Next Steps
The Library will continue to provide wired and wireless access to the public and gauge the combined utilization across the system and assess its impact on this indicator. APL is also a participant in the Edge Initiative, which provides a management and leadership tool to help libraries create a path for continuous growth and development of public technology services. Edge supports APL in assessing how the Austin community is using technology and how to align future growth and services with community priorities and citizen needs.
Contact Information
For more information contact Victoria Rieger, Library Financial Manager, at (512) 974-7446.