Public libraries

Our comparative profiles use the latest CIPFAstats data for 2016, and bring it into simple and easy to read charts that collectively build up a detailed view of how your library service compares to others.

What are they?

The CIPFAstats Public Libraries Profiles were developed in response to requests from library authorities from around the UK and 2016 sees the fifth edition of these highly popular profiles.

The profiles enable you to examine how your service costs and performance compare to your peers, providing key decision-makers with a quick, inexpensive way to engage with the most recent CIPFAstats data to support evidence-based decision-making.

The profiles look at the following key aspects of library provision:

  • Numbers of libraries and service users.
  • Costs of running library services.
  • Levels of staffing and volunteers.
  • Annual book and audio-visual issues.
  • Stock and acquisition levels.
  • Performance in relation to speed of requests.
  • User satisfaction.

What are the benefits?

There are a number of benefits from signing up:

  • Professional reports from a trusted source.
  • No additional work required as they draw on data returns already made.
  • Help you to understand your service better.
  • Identify potential areas for savings and improvement.
  • Identify authorities who are performing well.
  • Saves you time and money on analysing the data yourself.
  • Provides evidence for performance assessments e.g. PLQIM.
  • Understand your figures better before finalising your next CIPFAstats return.
  • Get involved and help us develop the profiles to be even better.

How to order

The 2016 Libraries Profiles are usually available for £475 + VAT for Welsh and Scottish Authorities. DCMS sponsored the 2015/16 set of reports for all English library authorities; the profiles can be found here.

You will be provided with a libraries profile pack, tailored to your individual authority and containing three sets of profiles, which compare your authority to:

  • all responding library authorities across the UK
  • all other library authorities within your region (or country for Wales and Scotland)
  • your nearest neighbour grouping as defined by the CIPFA Nearest Neighbours Model.

In addition, you will receive an interactive Excel tool to enable you to analyse the data further and export charts for your own reports. You will also be able to request an additional profile compared with any selection of authorities at no additional charge.

Contact us

If you have any queries please email E: