The Interlibrary Loan Internet Accessible Database (ILLiad) is software that libraries use to borrow items from other libraries. A resource sharing program provided by OCLC, ILLiad automizes all interlibrary loan functions. The library patron can find materials on WorldCat or other catalogs and then initiate a request through ILLiad. The electronic materials are delivered to the patron via computer and available for thirty days. As stated on UNM’s ILLiad site: “OCLC ILLiad is a model, implemented in software, of the interlibrary loan process” (https://illiad.unm.edu/illiad/illiad.dll?SessionID=U105936988W&Action=10&Form=1).
A library can benefit from using ILLiad in several ways. Users do not need library staff to place or receive a request, giving them greater autonomy, independence, and privacy. Using ILLiad frees up library staff to do other tasks. It is especially important at an academic library to have easy access to materials at other libraries since no library can hold every title. When I used ILLiad to order a journal article, the process was easy and the delivery was fast. I placed my order after formal business hours on Friday, 7-09-2010, and received my article before noon on Monday, 7-12-2010. I did not, however, receive any notification that my article had arrived. According to UNM’s ILLiad site, an email notification was sent, but I did not notice any such email in my in-box. While ILLiad simplifies the process of ILL, I would suggest it be combined with Docutek’s e-reserves. If a professor wanted to borrow an article from a different institution and then put that borrowed article on reserve for her students, it would be simpler to have one system that could handle both tasks. Unfortunately, articles provided by ILLiad expire after 30 days. I suspect this is for copyright reasons, but there is nothing on UNM’s ILLiad site explaining the reason for the 30-day limit.