The National Library of Scotland, in conjunction with Cambridge University Library, Bodleian Library (University of Oxford), The National Library of Wales, and Trinity College Library (Dublin), wished to relocate the existing central receipt and distribution facility from central London to a National Library of Scotland (NLS) site in Edinburgh.
As part of this relocation exercise it was important for the agency to review its operating processes and identify opportunities to improve efficiency. This would be achieved through the introduction of new IT systems and through optimising the design of the operations within the new facility. The Logistics Business was engaged initially to produce an Invitation to Tender that included a specification of requirements for a new control system. This work included defining new operating processes following a review of the existing operations, the collection of metrics related to the current operation and future growth, the definition of the IT and systems requirements, and the negotiation of the final document with interested parties from all of the five Legal Deposit Libraries and the existing Agency.
Following a series of meetings and site visits, and by utilising the experience of The Logistics Business, the document was completed in September 2007. The document was issued in early 2008 with the new system implemented in 2009. In a second stage of the project The Logistics Business was engaged to review two alternative sites for the new facility and prepare designs for the fit-out of both, which incorporated the proposed new operating processes.
Throughput volumes and buffer storage requirements were calculated following observation and discussion with the current operators and from the available data. Due consideration was given to the manual handling requirements and the optimum materials flow when considering the most appropriate equipment and layout for the operation. Several different options were considered, and the reasons for the eventual recommended solution were explained in a report submitted to the client. The proposed solution was illustrated using AutoCAD drawings, which were prepared for both possible sites, and budget costs and contact details of potential suppliers were provided to the client.