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Guidelines for processing incoming courier

When courier bins are dropped off, do a quick check for any problems.

  • Check the labels on the incoming bins. Did you receive the correct bins? If yes, remove the labels to avoid bins being returned in error.  If no, report the problem to the IFLS ILL office.
  • Are the bins wet or damaged? If outside of bins are wet, check for any water in the bins or any water damaged materials. If wet materials are found, please contact the IFLS ILL office to report the problem.

Staff assigned to handling incoming courier bins should be aware of inspection practices, understand patron privacy law, and be trained to efficiently handle the materials in space available in your library as well as recognize problems. 

Try different methods to find the most efficient for your workflow, space and ergonomics. With one motion, inspect each item, verify contents, check in item, lock item if applicable, sort to piles/carts (holds and to be shelved). Other possible piles as space permits:

  • Any misrouted items sent to your library may be set in a pile to go into an appropriate courier bin.
  • Items that are missing pieces are not checked in and set aside to be dealt with after the process is finished.
  • Damaged items are noted and also set aside for later attention. When inspected note the problem on the lending libraries paperwork. 
  • If there are larger requests made by individual patrons, and space is available nearby, sort those items into its own pile. 
  • ILL items are sorted out for later processing by appropriate staff member.

If setting aside items that need additional handling – have space/staff assigned to handle every day.

When bins have been emptied, inspect for any damage and clean the bin in preparation to use for outgoing courier.

NOTE: Be aware of the security of bins and courier materials when planning/setting up your courier area.