Home Bindery vs Commercial Bindery:
The decision whether to send material to a commercial binder or to have a binder in the library is to be decided first. As binderies become more and more mechanised, the investment in machinery alone makes one to hesitate to take the latter decision. Increasing labour costs, lack of trained help and excessive labour turnover tend to raise operational costs. The amount of Liberian's time and energy that must be expended in supervision and maintenance is also another factor to be considered.
Having library binderies has many advantages such as the closer control of the work, a possible speeding up of the work, and the ability to decide the style and quality of the product. Having books and especially periodicals always on the premises is both desirable and convenient. However, relative economies, benefits and convenience have to be worked out clearly. A home bindery is perhaps of great value in university libraries and some research libraries where the constant demand for the materials make it advisable to keep them on the premises. According to one authority unless there are more than 20,000 items for binding annually, no substantial economy can be achieved by a public library. There are claims that a library bindery can economically used also for jobs such as making book card pockets, illustration-mounting, magazine cover making. In the final analysis however, local facilities, circumstances and situations naturally affect the decision.
The question of whether or not a library should operate its own bindery is an important one but one which cannot be settled categorically for all libraries.