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Mandarin
4.6
(55)

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Web-based & fully customizable library automation software

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Mandarin Pricing

Pricing overview

Value for money rating

4.7

/5

55

Price starts from

Free

Pricing options
Free plan
Subscription
Free trial

Pricing details

Annual subscriptions for Mandarin, cloud-hosted, range from $750-$950 depending on library size and patron numbers.

On-premise pricing carries a one-time purchase fee of $1250, then $780 annually for each site to cover services and updates.

What users say

I love the customized look I can give to my home page. Mandarin Library is a fun and intuitive program that meet budgetary constaints while allowing me to expand in new ways.
The MLA system empowers me to provide the best bibliographic database I can create for my students. Price point is exceptional, MLA system is user-friendly, robust and secure.

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Reviewers who mentioned pricing said:

VB
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Vanessa B.

Verified reviewer

Primary/Secondary Education, 11-50 employees

Used weekly for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Great Option for Small Schools at a terrific price

Reviewed 4 years ago

We have saved money by knowing what is in our inventory. In the past, we have bought duplicate copies simply out of poor inventory control. Mandarin allows us to know where everything is at all times.

Pros

I love that we have the ability to not only automate our library but can also run our textbook management and electronics management through the Mandarin system. As a small private school, our budget is limited and anything that helps us control inventory and save money in the long-run is a worthwhile investment.

Cons

My only complaint is that it is sometimes difficult to find an item on Record Fetch. The system is not very forgiving with typos and not all ISBNs are in the system, even when the book may be. I also wish they would include Usborne Books in the system. We get many of these books donated to the school and have a difficult time logging them in the Mandarin system.

MC
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Marcia C.

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 6-12 months

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Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Very Good Library Management Software

Reviewed 10 months ago

We went without a Library Software Management system for 10 years! Our older system (Follett) was outdated and the cost to update it was too much. Mandarin came in and integrated our database with their software so I had a working database again -- and could go from there. It works with our FACTS system so I didn't have to put in any patrons at all. I've felt very supported all along the way and will continue to need support as we move into Inventory this summer. Really a good company!

Pros

The company is excellent and the support is by far the absolute BEST I've ever experienced. If I email support or call I'm IMMEDIATELY helped. Outstanding is the best adjective. The software is very user-friendly. I'm not a full-time librarian so there was definitely a huge learning curve for me -- and the software was NOT hard to learn. There's tons of videos to help as well. The company completely integrated our old software program into Mandarin, so I didn't have to do anything -- except clean up our system. It's also fully integrated with FACTS -- our school management system. I'm very happy we went with this company.

Cons

I really need to use if for a longer period of time and honestly I don't have anything to compare it to because I'm not a "regular librarian" who might have had experience with other library software -- I have none. But, having said that, I think there are a few things that could be better. To Search for a "missing" book I look in "Status" -- but to do that I have to first go to Catalog and find...

AL
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Ann L.

Libraries, 201-500 employees

Used daily for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Used it to hand link 4 school libraries

Reviewed a year ago

I loved the professionalism and the service that I got. After using them in an Ohio prison and know how strong the bid process for companies to land contracts with the state, I knew they would be good for the charter school libraries I was creating in the state of Michigan. After hand linking over 19,500 books with over 4,500 to go and having library aides take over the management of the other 3 libraries while I finished the 4th, I knew I made the right decision.

Pros

I like that I got want I needed, the ease of use, and the tech support they gave for the price. I saved over $12,000 over other systems and working in public schools every dime you save can go toward books for the library.

Cons

That I had to have 4 different logins for the 4 schools that I had to remember. I also didn't like that I had to call or email them for new login for the staff even though they quickly did them for me.

DI
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Daniel I.

Libraries, self-employed

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Excellent product, excellent support!

Reviewed 10 months ago

Mandarin has been a godsend to me. When I first took over our school library, I had zero experience in a library. Worse than that, it had just been built and our average book age was 50+ years old. On top of all that, we had just started adding curriculum to the mandarin system. Our previous librarian wasn’t sure on how to do that and she had added about 1/4 of the curriculum and done it wrong. I had...

Pros

I like that once you get to know it, you can really maneuver around the program very easily. I’ve rarely ever experienced the website being down, never during school hours. It takes all the work out of circulation. All I have to do is scan and shelve.

Cons

In the catalogue feature, when you’re adding or editing a single book, the fields are all numbered and not easy to know what you are doing. I would love to see that small feature become as modernized and easy to use as the rest of the program. With that said, it is easy enough to figure out, it just takes some time and since we don’t use it often, I have to get help every time I do use it.

AR
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Anonymous Reviewer

Verified reviewer

Research, 51-200 employees

Used daily for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend9/10

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Mandarin is Convenient for Online users

Reviewed 2 years ago

Mandarin has helped patrons to access the contents of the library collection in the comfort of their homes. Information is simply a click away.

Pros

Mandarin is a server based software. This makes it cheap. With one license, numerous client computers access the application. Therefore, patrons access the library collection through the client computers. I have noticed that members of Technical Service Department of the library speed up work all thanks to client-server functionality on Mandarin. Patrons are able to access the library collection...

Cons

Much as the software is efficient, less developed communities with poor internet infrastucture may find the software irritating due to internet connectivity issues. Beside, not all titles can be found on record Fetch. This compels catalogues to look for alternative sources of information. This process consumes time

MP
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Mary P.

Primary/Secondary Education, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 6-12 months

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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School Library Complete Solutions - Amazing Ability to Meet Your Students/Staff Needs

Reviewed 4 years ago

Mandarin Library creates a public face for our school that expands the resources that we can house on campus. It is a great marketing tool of academic resources that we can easily put within student/parent reach. I love the customized look I can give to my home page. Mandarin Library is a fun and intuitive program that meet budgetary constaints while allowing me to expand in new ways. I was nervous about learning a new system and found the changes made everything easier in library management. Again, Technical Support is a phone call away and they are the most patient, kind staff of experts that speaks volumes about this company.

Pros

We are a Classical School Pre-K thru 12 - This software has made my job easier and saves me time. The transition from our old system to Mandarin was amazing. I was happy with the ease of implementing the new system and tech support patiently guided any questions. I can't say enough good things about tech support - I love the speed & ease of inputting new records and barcodes for classroom sets of...

Cons

What is there not to like? I love this software!!!

CS
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Chad S.

Libraries, 51-200 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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I Love Mandarin

Reviewed a year ago

The switch to Mandarin from RenWeb library was a breeze. They handled all of it on their end. After a small learning curve I was up and running, with SO many more tools at my disposal than I ever had before... things I didn't even know I needed but now couldn't imagine going without. We used RenWeb because it was built-in to the SIS we already paying for. It was EXTREMELY bare bones, but it was free. Mandarin was an enormous step up at a great price. I wish I had switched sooner.

Pros

Easy to use. Value for the money. Quick response to customer service inquiries. Records (new enrollments) automatically update from SIS (FACTS/RenWeb). Record Fetch is great!

Cons

OPAC not customizable enough. Financials do not integrate with SIS (FACTS/RenWeb).

MK
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Michelle K.

Libraries, 51-200 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend8/10

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Mandarin Snapshot

Reviewed 3 years ago

Mandarin provides an affordable and easy-to-implement integrated library package (cataloging, circulation, public access interface). It continues to offer more features and the IT support department has been very helpful when a bit of tweaking is needed.

Pros

Versatile library automation with room to accommodate new features. Good software support - very available. Great price for small libraries.

Cons

This company's products are geared for elementary and high schools. The OPAC features reading-level categories which are not necessary for specialized libraries and those serving adults. However these features can be removed by Mandarin support. There are some problems in the cataloging software when adding subsequent subdivisions (involving punctuation). But these can be worked around. It would be great to have more options for the public visual search interface (like font style, colors, etc.) and general layout.

CS
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Carrie S.

Libraries, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Change

Reviewed 4 years ago

I have had a great experience with Mandarin. Anytime I've needed help, the tech department has been quick to help me. They guide me in ways that are easy to incorporate on my end. They also are very mindful of things that need to be fixed on their end. The cost is wonderful. This system is worth every penny. My overall experience has been wonderful! For a lady who doesn't like change, Mandarin has been a great help!

Pros

What I like most about the software is the ease of the transition from one system to another. Our school had to change from another system. Mandarin was the best choice for our school for a change that wasn't an option. I find features in M5 that I never had in the other system. My favorite is the ability to add new books to the system with ease.

Cons

This is not so much an issue for people who do understand code. But I had a bit of an issue with it at the beginning. I am learning what each number stands for and how to utilize it when I'm adding an item or updating something in the system.

SW
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Sharon W.

Education Management, 51-200 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend8/10

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Easy & Affordable

Reviewed 10 months ago

It's fairly straight forward and easy to use. The help staff is amazing! If you have a problem, can't remember how to do something, or need assistance, they are there to help and take care of things in a timely manner.

Pros

For a small to mid-range school library, this is a great budget-friendly automation program. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles, but it meets our needs adequately.

Cons

It's a bit time-consuming and ponderous to set up at the beginning of each school year. The reserving a book part doesn't seem to work well for me.

AB
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Ann B.

Libraries, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 6-12 months

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Robust and user friendly system

Reviewed 4 years ago

I inherited a very poorly cataloged collection: corrupt classification, lost records, level one (or less) catalog- ing, lack of subject headings... The MLA system empowers me to provide the best bibliographic database I can create for my students. Price point is exceptional, MLA system is user-friendly, robust and secure. I am one happy catalog librarian.

Pros

The learning curve made for a very easy transition to learn the system and get to work. I did reports, inventory, edits of existing records and learned to use "Fetch" for my MARC cataloging needs in a very short time. I am delighted that the system adheres to national standards in bibliographic MARC. I feel secure with the MLA system that my work will not be corrupted or lost at anytime.

Cons

As an experienced professional cataloger, I would like to see the policies that govern the system to better understand display functions.

EM
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Ebony M.

Libraries, 11-50 employees

Used weekly for 6-12 months

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Mandarin - A Good Choice

Reviewed 4 years ago

Overall, I love Mandarin and would recommend it. I am in my first year with this product, so occasionally I have questions. The customer service has always been kind, helpful, and quick.

Pros

I love that my card catalog is available online to families and is so user friendly for them. They love the visual search and recommended reading pages! The gallery is also a nice bonus, as is the blackboard. It is also extremely helpful that you can customize your searches to narrow down your results. Also, I, as an administrator, like how easy it is to carry out transactions for the students.

Cons

Filling in values for book information gets a little confusing. Adding a book using the ISBN is a great feature that automatically fills in most information needed. However, if you must manually add a book, then it is tedious looking up what information goes into what value number and field/sub-field.

AR
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Anonymous Reviewer

Verified reviewer

Education Management, 51-200 employees

Used monthly for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Mandarin is a great library software!

Reviewed 4 years ago

Overall Mandarin has been wonderful for managing our library needs. Reports, email to patrons, entering books, etc. all go fairly smoothly. When we do have a problem or question Mandarin support is quick to respond and great to work with.

Pros

Love that it is easy to learn and has fantastic customer support! Much easier to use than larger library software systems I've used in the past. The conversion from the old system to this one was very smooth. Very affordable.

Cons

Having to switch between the Equipment, Textbook and General Library databases is sometimes confusing. One often forgets on the first search for an item and has to go back and re-search.

HJ
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Helen J.

Education Management, 51-200 employees

Used daily for 6-12 months

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Great alternative for small and medium sized libraries.

Reviewed 4 years ago

Mandarin is a wonderfully affordable program that has many bells and whistles for the price.

Pros

Ease of use Tech Support is very helpful. You can either watch videos or call for personal support.

Cons

search function for entering MARC records

MD
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Maureen D.

Primary/Secondary Education, 51-200 employees

Used monthly for 6-12 months

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Mandarin fulfills our needs

Reviewed 4 years ago

When our Student Information System decided to get rid of their library system we had been using for years I didn't know where to begin. Mandarin provides a lot for the cost and has met the needs of our small school library.

Pros

It is easy to catch on to the features and how it works. It has a lot of neat things you can customize, many we have not used yet, but I hope we will in the future. Customer support has always been easy to reach and very knowledgable and helpful.

Cons

Some things don't seem intuitive for me, but support is always quick to respond when I can't figure something out or find the answer in documentation.

PM
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Peggy M.

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support

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A solid system

Reviewed 8 years ago

There are about 30 public libraries in Ontario using various versions of Mandarin M3/Mandarin Oasis. The system has been a solid performer over the years, at a price that is reasonable and manageable for smaller libraries. When we were looking for a system that would allow each library to use the system independently, and without an onsite IT person, Mandarin was the one that seemed to be the best fit. Check-in, check-out, holds, catalogue searches - all of those basic functions are easy to manage within this system, and easy to explain to new staff or volunteers coming into the library. A good choice.

Pros

No pros were added to this review

Cons

No cons were added to this review

DN
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Diane N.

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support

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GREAT SYSTEM FOR SMALL PUBLIC LIBRARIES

Reviewed 8 years ago

Our small but very busy community library in a small Maine town has been with the Mandarin system for several years. Their product gets better with each upgrade, the technical support when needed is timely and we are usually not impacted by "fixes." Mandarin has allowed us to move our library forward with new technology, ideas and services that ensure our library keeps up with our patrons' ever changing needs. The Library Governing Board and I recommend Mandarin as an affordable, reliable and excellent system.

Pros

No pros were added to this review

Cons

No cons were added to this review