New Online Room Booking System

Group study room in Belk Library and Information Commons

Group study room in Belk Library and Information Commons

At the beginning of fall semester, Belk Library and Information Commons launched a new system for booking group study rooms online. This new system is mobile-friendly and let’s patrons filter their room choices more easily. It is available at: https://mrbs.library.appstate.edu

Why Do We Need a New Version?

Given the heavy use of the booking system and the need for a mobile-friendly design, the Technology Services team decided it was time for a complete overhaul of the interface and functionality. The old system interface was designed for use on desktop/laptop computers and proved cumbersome on mobile devices.

What Are the Advantages of Using the New Booking System?

Three key differences bring enhanced functionality and new features to the redesign:

  • Responsive Design. The interface adapts to the size of the browser or display making it easy to use on any device, including tablets and mobile phones.
  • Streamlined Booking Flow. Patrons can now select from a list of criteria to filter their choices based on room features and special equipment available.
  • Quick Booking Options. Find a room quickly with fewer clicks or book a room immediately by scanning the QR code on the door outside each room.

To book a group study room online, go to the Group Study Rooms page on the library website and click the link “Book Online Now.”

What Happened to the Old Booking System?

The old booking system is still available from the login page and has been dubbed the “classic” version. Launched in summer 2011, the older version was the first automated system used by the library to book rooms online and has handled thousands of reservations.

Since a major overhaul was needed to make the system mobile-friendly, our developers took this opportunity to provide enhancements based on user feedback.

 

Now that I’ve answered your questions, here’s a question for you: Which room booking system do you prefer, the new version or the classic version? Leave your comments below.

 

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2 Comments

  1. Hello,
    Thanks for communicating with the campus about the new system and for adding the classic version option. The CJM group had a discussion about this and (if I am understanding correctly) the difficulty is that the system does not give users enough options, it is not flexible enough. If the parameters that a user enters do not fit exactly, they can not see other options, i.e. perhaps a particular room is not available for a 4 hour period, but it is open for 2 hours, the user can not see that. Also, I think the same thing happens when they choose equipment, i.e.maybe they can use a room, even if it does not have all of the equipment that they originally selected, but they don’t get the option to do that.

  2. Geri,
    Thank you for your feedback. These are valid points and we will look at improving the user experience in terms of the filtering of results and providing alternate options when no exact matches are found.

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