Family Accounts


We just wrapped up our program and patrons were overwhelmingly happy with the program. Thank you so much for a great program! We had a couple of requests for changes to the program and I wanted to see if there was a way to incorporate them into the program, whether on our end or on the development side.
The thing that seemed to mess up most people was starting one account for the head of household and then having to add a separate account for each kid (though, yes they were sub-accounts, people didn’t like having to come up with a username and password for each kid). Is there a way to have just one account (one username, one password) for a whole family? And then the list of family members would be under that account?
The one other thing people commented on was that they wanted an option to retroactively log their minutes (we count minutes in our program) to a particular date. I think this was mostly for people who like to know exactly how many minutes they read on a particular date, without having to log in every day. So, for example, they read 30 minutes on Monday but didn’t log their minutes and read 30 minutes on Tuesday then logged in. Instead of just inputting 60 minutes on Tuesday, people wanted an option to input that they read 30 minutes on Monday and 30 minutes on Tuesday. For some reason we had a lot of comments about that. I guess people just really like being accurate and keeping track. Is that even possible?
Anyways, again, I think the GRA is great and I’m so happy it was developed and offered to libraries! THANK YOU!!!


No usernames for sub accounts: We received some "Really?!"s from patrons who had to wrap their brains around everyone getting their own username and password. At first I was on their side, but I have since decided that I really like everyone having their own. Once a kid is old enough to use a device on their own, it becomes necessary for them to have their own login info.

Breakdown logging by date: I’m ABSOLUTELY on board with this one. I might have mentioned it somewhere on the forum before. In addition to allowing patrons to see when they actually read, this will make the “Max logging per day” limit useful. Currently, it really has a limiting effect. During the summer I had to continually increase the max logging because patrons who only logged every few days (or weekly) weren’t able to log all their time. Below is an example (from Virgin Pulse’s activity tracking) that has a calendar widget included. Default is to enter time for today, but I can go backwards (and ONLY backwards) to log additional days.

  1. We certainly have had a ton of requests here to not require username and password for younger kids. I have an idea for a system where you can register family members without a username/password but you have to set one up for them to use the software directly. They could also set one up on their own if they were registered with an email address (i.e. you register your teen with their email address and then they can confirm via email who they are and set up a username/password).

  2. The retroactive minutes thing is interesting. Our program hasn’t had that requirement but I can see people wanting to log per calendar date. That would also allow them to see a report at the end of which days they missed, etc. It would also allow us to have features like sending an email to someone if they haven’t read for x days. This is a good thing to consider.

  3. Regarding comments by @holly - we’ve had a lot of complaints about the logging maximums and I think for our program next year it’s likely we won’t have a limitation set or we’ll have one for the first week or so but then we’ll relax it. Some people here didn’t hit their achiever number because they didn’t know they could call their branch and have someone log the minutes through the Control Room.


AND, we could run reports on what days/weeks people are really actively reading/logging. Then we could use that info to promote reading on “slow” read days. Fancy stuff, I know, and all very future wishlist!