8 Pages

Document Delivery Vendors: Benefits and Choices

WithMartha Lewis

In the Library/Information Services department at Abbott Laboratories, we rely heavily on both commercial and non-commercial vendors to fill our document delivery needs. Although we also use vendors to provide copies of patents, this discussion will cover only copies of journal articles and book chapters. I will provide background to give you a feel for our operation, define types of vendors and the kinds of services they provide, and describe advantages of using vendors. I‘ll discuss how we manage the few disadvantages, our experiences in negotiating contracts, and how we evaluate vendor performance. I’ll conclude with a few tips to help you get the best results in selecting and working with vendors. I am not able to mention individual vendor names or prices. However, in the May 1992 issue of Online, Georgia Finnigan presents a helpful review of document delivery technology and sources. 1