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Re: Delivery of serials by the subscription agencies Lesley Tweddle 15 Dec 1999 23:47 UTC

Hallo Isabelle,

We're a library in Egypt, and I would go for delivery by the vendor
every time.

My main reason would be this: as you point out, things can get lost both
before and after delivery.  Publishers just love to ignore your specific
address requests. It took me months of effort to get Bowker to address
things to "Library - Serials // American University in Cairo", not just
"American University in Cairo".  The staff in the University mail room
might have no idea which department had ordered it.

So if you need to make sure things are sent to a particular dept of the
Bib. Nat., at least you have only to struggle with a few vendors, not
hundreds of publishers.

Vendors seem to offer two layers of delivery service.

The less expensive is a boxing service without check-in.  The publishers
address the issues for all Vendor X's customers to Vendor X, with the
customer's name included in the address.  Vendor X then sorts all this
mail and forwaards it to the correct customers at agreed intervals.

>From time to time, issues get tossed into the wrong cartons.

Much more expensively, vendors offer a full consolidation service, which
Marcia Whipple's reply described.  I should imagine this would greatly
reduce missing issues, and might pay for itself by what you would save
on buying replacements because the claims period had passed.

In both cases, the cost relates to the frequency of shipments as well as
other factors.

Good luck.

 Lesley Tweddle