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Handy Library Manager, Reviews

handy library manager

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Non-Profit Retirement Community Library

We are a non-profit retirement community. Our library has over 5,000 volumes and is staffed by resident volunteers. Handy Library Manager was the ideal solution for our needs and came at an affordable price. With the Handy software we run book searches, reports and lists, and print catalog cards and labels. Support from PrimaSoft has always been prompt and helpful. The Handy Library software has many more features that we are looking forward to using.

On a scale of 0 to 5, we rate Handy Library Manager at a full 5.

Horizon House
Seattle, Washington

HCGS, Genealogy Library

We are a research non for profit library only used for genealogical researchers. We do not lend any books to our patrons but offer them for research only as well as internet search.

Mostly we track family history books, location history books, various cds and dvds that contain genealogical information. We also have numerous research magazines and quarterlies from different areas.

So far with the upload of books, cds, and quarterlies your library program indicates we have about 4,000 items already. We haven't added any new items yet but will work on that. Mostly we just need to know what we have in a database so we will know how to fill our future book orders.

I think the price is very good and so far has been easy enough to use. But we need the internet help for future use.

We do not have any checkout books in the research library. Never.

We have specific volunteers to run the program. I uploaded the data from a previous program but someone else is going to input new books and material. So far I cannot comment on future features but if after use I will comment on new possible features.

The service has been great. The help tab was valuable while trying to upload from our old data. And you answer any emails promptly. I would rate it a 5/5.

HCGS-Genealogy Library, Sandra S.

Academia La Providencia (bilingual school library for children, Honduras)

We are a non-profit Orphan care organisation in Honduras. As part of this ministry we have a bilingual school for the children from the local community and the orphans that live in our family homes. Our library is really important to us as it is the only chance these children get to read books and check them out to read at home. The majority of our students do not have access to books at home and so the library is in constant use and a favourite place for the children to come.
We currently have about 12,000 books in our system, and we also have audio books and DVDs. We are hoping that our library will continue to grow as we get more books donated to us. We use the Handy Library software which is great for our needs.
We have a volunteer come each day to work as our librarian in the school, and so we love that the software is really simple to learn and use. It is easy to print out bar codes for each book as we program them in, and then the simple lay out makes it easy to scan books in and out when the classes come into the library - with so many children we need it to be quick and efficient. The software is simple for anyone to use and we are still discovering some of the great features that it includes.
We have also found that the customer service is very quick, thorough and friendly, willing to help out with any queries we may have.

Katharine Marrow, Academia La Providencia

Timpson Area Genealogical & Heritage Society

We are a non-profit genealogical library. Like most archives, we do not check in nor check out anything.

We use Handy Library as an old fashion card catalog. The search function is very helpful in finding what we have and where it is based on the call number.

We currently have 2,300 in the catalog. Maybe 100 items needing to be added. Our library is managed by a volunteer staff so it take longer to get some task accomplished.

The genealogy library is in a separate room inside the public library. We tried sharing their system. This was not satisfactory. I found Handy Library and we have been very happy with it.

We have Handy Library on one desktop, which we are taking out of service, and system support has been very helpful in making the move to a new desktop.

TAGHS Library
James B.

Australian Intervarsity Choral Society Association.

I'd rate the library software a 4/5

We are a not-for-profit, student run choir. Our committee are volunteers, and one of our biggest problems has always been keeping track of our music (our library consists of more than 5000 individual pieces of music). We initially decided to use Small Library Organiser Pro because it included all of the features we needed and was easy to use on a day-to-day basis, with all members of the committee able to use the software. We particularly liked the reporting function to determine who had music outstanding at the end of a concert season. We're excited to use the Handy Library software as it appears to encompass all the useful features of the previous software with a more intuitive and attractive interface.

I'd rate the last library software a 4/5 - the functionality and service were excellent, but the interface of the software made it difficult for new users to work out what to do (this appears to have been addressed in the new software - the interface is much cleaner.)

Alex Lewis, President
Australian Intervarsity Choral Society Association

Equipment Library.

The Community Television Network is a non-profit Public Access TV station in Portland, Maine. We use the Handy Equipment Tool Manager to keep track of about 200 pieces of video equipment that we loan out to our Access Producers for their video projects. The equipment we manage includes video cameras, tripods, batteries, microphones and cables. We selected Handy Tool Manager because it provides all of the features of programs that are written specifically for Access Stations but at a much more affordable price a big concern for a non-profit like ours. One staff member administers the program and the Check In/Out process is done by one of four staff members using a barcode scanner. The program helps us keep track of overdue equipment so we can ensure that nothing goes missing. The program is very reliable and easy to learn and use.
Brian Knoblock
Media Coordinator
Community Television Network
Portland, Maine

Newport Ship Centre Library

... Over the course of 15 years, many archaeologists and conservationists have been working on this project, under the direction of Dr. Toby Jones. During this time, a large number of specialist books and journals have built up, as well as significant donations of books from the Friends and other sources. These are currently unrecorded and stored in boxes. In 2016, the director made a proposal for a proper library to be formed using this book stock of, perhaps, 2,000 items, as a base, but with the intention of continued expansion and purchase of new titles from donations. The objective is to have a dedicated search room adjacent to the reconstructed ship, where scholars and members of the public can study relevant material. Some of the items are highly specialised, some are out of print (but still very important) and some are foreign language, for which there are no other copies in the UK. Cataloguing the library started in February 2017. It is being done by a volunteer, Sian King, who was formerly secretary to the Friends, and is a fully qualified and experienced retired librarian. Working, at the moment, just one morning/week, about 200 titles have now been catalogued, and are searchable. In the future, this catalogue will be available to the public on the website, and they can then visit and consult the material. ... Newport Ship Centre Library
Sian King, librarian
November 2017

Non-Profit Quilting Guild Library

I received the Handy Library Manager for our non-profit Quilting Guild association: Lakeview Quilters' Guild in Houston Texas. I was tasked with finding a new library software product that met all of the guild's needs, with limited budget. My main reason for buying software from Primasoft was the price was right, and the software had all the required features.
We have around 350 members of the guild with close to 2000 quilting specific books for our members to check out at our monthly meetings. We needed to have a piece of software that kept track of what was checked out, by whom, and how many were checked out by that member. If a book was overdue, be able to send reminders to the members to return the book. Handy Library provides all this and more. We have volunteers run our library, with a new librarian each year. They may not be computer literate, as their expertise is in quilting. Handy provides an easy to use Graphical interface that can easily be taught to the new librarian in a single teaching session. I would recommend this software for any non-profit or small group needing library management software.
Thanks again for all you have done with helping me set up this software. You have been a life savior.
Laura Ray IT Representative for Lakeview Quilters Guild

Prairie Community Library
We are a volunteer, nonprofit library no public funding is involved. We raise funds through fundraisers and donations. We use the Handy Library to manage books CDs DVDs. We project our Collection to be approximately 20,000 books. We chose your program because of cost, check out is done by volunteers. Software is managed by volunteers. This program has the features we needed to carry out our mission. Thank you, C. W.

Sun City Roseville, community library

The community lodge has a dedicated library facility, currently holding a bit over 5000 books. The library is sponsored and funded by the common facilities board of directors, as a free benefit for the thousands of village residents.

Obviously a number of issues were raised. Some things we considered important:
-Aility to port existing 5000 book database across (avoid manually keying in data)
-Ability to auto backup, both locally and to our facility server
-Ability to continue providing 'web' viewable list of current content
-Ability to improve over our current search capabilities by patrons (either locally or remotely)
-Ability to protect database from unauthorized or unintentional modifications, either via patron
-Search or by volunteers - ( a Read-Only search, which our current program does not have)
-Ability to use electronic scan barcode, both for data entry and for inventory audits
-Ability to manually enter and edit data, for the computer averse
-A non-threatening computer user interface, modifiable to custom views and control, both for easier readability and to simplify operation
-Password protect of different access levels (not just one password for all)
-Affordability (it's a volunteer and partially subsidized facility)

Over the holidays, I actually downloaded as many library programs (demos) as I could find. I tried out and compared over fifteen programs (not counting ebook and online services), varying in cost and features the ones seemingly adaptable to our library requirements. I learned quite a lot. In the end, I felt that your new Handy Library program really struck a good balance between power and simplicity. It was something I could modify for all our uses and simplify enough to sell both the non-techies and the experienced but trainable volunteers. It did everything I needed, once I had my questions answered... and again thanks to you for filling in all the blanks.

Paul Stevenson, Community Member

The non-profit, community-based organization, web site:

Our library will be located at a community center in Mzuzu, Malawi. The non-profit, community-based organization, web site: Kwithu Women#s Group (KWG) was founded on the promise of creating a loving and supportive environment for vulnerable children in the Luwinga neighborhood of Mzuzu. The group runs programs and offers a suite of services to community members at the Kwithu community center, including providing hot meals to over 300 children three times a week, early childhood education, after-school tutoring and sports, community outreach and interventions on HIV/AIDS.

What type of items you organize and track in the software: mainly books

What is the maximum number of items you plan to manage: over 1000

Why you decided to use our software: price, and ease of use

Who is checking items out/in: students, teachers, community members

Who is in charge of running the software, how often: hopefully daily, but likely weekly; one of the community center staff members

What are some of the features you would like to see: Our volunteer librarian at WiderNet has imported 100+ books so far from an Excel file. She likes the program and found it easy to navigate. Does it have a Web interface for patrons to browse over their LAN?

Cliff Missen, MA
Director, WiderNet Project and WiderNet at UNC
Clinical Associate Professor, School of Information and Library Science
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Women's Empowerment, small non-profit library.

Women's Empowerment is a non-profit job-readiness program for homeless women in Sacramento. We have a small library of 800 items, including mostly books, but some DVDs. We use the Handy Library Manager system to catalog all our books, keep track of our patrons (Students, Graduates, Staff, and Volunteers), and check books in and out of our library.

I researched many software programs and this one looked like it had all the features I needed at a reasonable price. Our library is run by all volunteers. I am very pleased with our choice of HLM! It does everything I need it to do, our volunteers are able to easily check books in and out and the technical support when I've had questions has been great. Some of my favorite features are its ability to import book information including photos and details easily by scanning the ISBN code, it allows me to create library cards for our patrons including our logo, and I can set it up to send out e-mails to patrons with overdue books. My only wish now is that the reporting feature was a little more flexible and easier to use, but I can export the database and create what I want in Excel.
Ellen Schaefer

Bonsai Society of Portland, library

I have to tell you how much I appreciate the fact that changes to the name of a book follow the item for loans. We had no end of trouble with Small Library if someone changed the name of a book, Check In couldn't find it. Looks like that won't happen with Handy Library. Again, Thank You.
Jan H., Bonsai Society of Portland

Community Library mostly for children

What kind of library: community library mostly for children but with adult books as well.
What type of items do you organize and track in the software: books
What is the maximum number of items you plan to manage: 5000
Why have you decided to use our software: price and only price…if we could have afforded anything else, we would have bought it instead
Who is in charge of running the software : Volunteer on a casual basis
What are some of the features you would like to see:
1. run on a Mac (had to buy a cheap pc laptop to run it),
2. revamped from top to bottom as a modern prg ,
3. easier formatting of reports, sort order, etc. (that’s why I wanted to export to Excel or be able to sort and organize without breaking my teeth)
On a scale 0-5, how do you value our services and Handy Library product: product support = 5, product itself = 1

Robert D.

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