City of Austin Performance Report 2014-15

Circulation per Capita

Measure Description
Circulation per capita is a standard indicator in the library industry. It relates the number of library materials lent to the number of persons the library serves. The “per capita” version of the circulation measure provides a simple indication of how much “repeat” business our libraries receives.
Calculation Method
This measure is calculated by dividing the total annual circulation from all library facilities by the corresponding full-purpose population figure.
FY 2014-15 Results
The goal for this measure was established at 6.40. The Library did not meet the goal, with an actual result of 6.27, which is a decline from last year’s result of 6.32.
Assessment of Results
FY 2014-15 results continue a familiar trend, narrowly missing the established goal while the annual circulation for the Austin Public Library (APL) continues to experience significant growth each year. In FY 2014-15, 5.6 million items were circulated, up from 5.4 million in FY 2013-14. The full-purpose population increased from 853,000 to 888,000. Since FY 2010-11, total circulation has increased by 900,000 items, while the city’s full purpose population has increased by 92,000 during this same period.
APL is projecting an increase of 4.3% in circulation in FY 2015-16, while full-purpose population is projected to increase 2.89%, resulting in a goal of 6.4 for circulation per capita. Once again, expected growth in the electronic delivery of materials drives the projected increase in circulation as more customers learn to use e-books and downloadable materials. With better quality materials available in higher quantities coupled with the ease of access to Library materials, circulation will continue to increase.
Father and son smiling.
Next Steps
Electronic delivery of content changes the way customers interact with the Library. Eliminating the delays associated with print production and distribution, circulation of digital materials at APL has increased 485% since FY 2011-12. This burgeoning shift in demand is driven by a new generation of library users with expectations for instant access from anywhere at any time in a variety of formats. Concurrently, the increase in demand for reserves indicates sustained popularity of hard-bound materials. Pulling outdated items from circulation also serves to increase the number of relevant items that are circulated system wide. APL’s expanded Floating Collection model enables Austin’s communities to shape their local Library’s collection by keeping materials returned at that location, and reduces the need for transporting materials back to the location of origin while simultaneously benefitting overall circulation growth.
Contact Information
For more information contact Victoria Rieger, Library Financial Manager, at (512) 974-7446.