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Mandarin

Web-based & fully customizable library automation software

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Mandarin Reviews

Reviews summary

Pros

I have worked with both Mike and Tom and what a joy it is. Both those fellows are so knowledgeable and always willing to help me out, make suggestions and just do a fantastic job in general.

Dee W.

We are long-time and very happy Mandarin Library Automation customers. We think everyone in your tech support department is fantastic and so very helpful.

Diana W.

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.

Mary P.

Cons

I inherited a very poorly cataloged collection: corrupt classification, lost records, level one (or less) catalog- ing, lack of subject headings.

Ann B.

Much as the software is efficient, less developed communities with poor internet infrastucture may find the software irritating due to internet connectivity issues.

Anonymous Reviewer

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.

Anonymous Reviewer

Overall rating

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96%
positive reviews
97%
would recommend this app

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45 reviews

recommended

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 2 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.

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 months 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

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

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We were sold something other than what we received.

Reviewed 2 years ago

When we decided to purchase this software we had very specific needs. We were told everything we wanted to do was already in the system or that the system would do it. Since then we were told it can't do what we were told it could do before we agreed to the contract. We are going to reimplement our old system because even though it didn't fit all of our needs it gives us more of what we need than...

Pros

Visually it was better looking than our previous system.

Cons

It didn't do almost everything we were promised it could do.

Vendor response

Hi Christopher, Thank you for sharing your review. We are very concerned about the experience you are having. We would welcome the opportunity to assist you and correct the issues you have listed. Thank you for your patience. We will also contact you directly to assist.

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

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Mandarin Review

Reviewed 2 months ago

Inventory issues and also daily transactions that can be so overwhelming

Pros

It is easy use read and getting used to also there is less complications when performing daily transactions by just scanning a barcode

Cons

a more modernized user interface

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 2 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!!!

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

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Great System

Reviewed 2 years ago

My overall experience with Mandarin has been wonderful. My questions are always quick to be answered. I would definitely recommend Mandarin to anyone who is looking for a new system for their library cataloging.

Pros

We came from using RenWeb for our Library Catalog and Patron Services. There's been a bit of learning curve, but Mandarin is so much easier to use than our previous system. Inputting new items into the catalog is so much easier than the previous system. It takes me a fraction of the time that I used to spend.

Cons

I don't like that I can't print library cards with our student's pictures on them. But, I can still print them in RenWeb with a barcode, so that's really nice. I also wish that the pictures were easier to update. School pictures don't come in until Mid to Late October and I don't have access to them. So new students don't have their pictures updated and continuing students don't have their new...

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

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Software and Support Designed for the Busy Librarian

Reviewed 2 years ago

We were required to switch from our current library software because the provider was discontinuing the service.

Pros

First, the purchase process which was simple, helpful and professional. Second, the installation process: loading my library data, testing and support - especially the webinar presentation and followup. Third, technical support: rapid, on-time and professional. I got a call or e-mail with a rapid and complete response.

Cons

Well, it's hard to find an issue, but what I would improve is the searchability and content of the online resources. I had a question about cataloging serial publications and couldn't access what I wanted.

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

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Change

Reviewed 2 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.

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend7/10

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Mandarin for Libraries

Reviewed 7 months ago

Mandarin's Tech support is great!!!

Pros

We were already using Madarain M3 to the switch to M% was seamless. Staff were able to adjust to the new platform quickly. We really like the cataloguing module. Very user friendly and the online OPAC is great as well.

Cons

Patrons are not yet able to transfer books from their reading lists to their reserve list. I would like to see an easier method for patrons to reserve books with one click.

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

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Easy library software

Reviewed 7 months ago

From the first point of my inquiries the Mandarin employees have been extremely helpful and knowledgeable. The concept that the first contact should know the product well made Mandarin stand out above the other companies I investigated. The technical support during and beyond implementation has also been outstanding showing that they really care about our library and our users.

Pros

This library software is easy to use and easy to train students and staff to use. The ability to quickly download catalog records from Library of Congress or other libraries is extremely helpful. Whenever I need to create a record that can't be downloaded, an exceptional template is available. If I need to edit a record all of the MARC record fields and subfields show as options for insertion; and it is very easy to delete an unwanted field.

Cons

When there are multiple call numbers on one record the call number should be absent from the results page, instead a note to 'see holdings'.

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

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Mandarin Snapshot

Reviewed 2 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.

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

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Works well for our school

Reviewed a year ago
Pros

Our school has used Mandarin for a long time. This fall, we upgraded to the latest version. The upgrade was worth it! Our new Mandarin has a fresh, updated look. Many of the features have been streamlined and are easy to use. No more clicking between multiple screens! I can do more work more efficiently! Downloading records is super easy. Purging books from the system is also super simple.

Cons

I was looking forward to printing off spine labels and pocket labels from my new Mandarin. However, the spine labels only print on a certain kind of label. I'm having trouble finding that specific label, so I continue to type my own. The pocket labels come out blurry. I experimented with both those types of labels on Mandarin with no luck.

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

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Very pleased

Reviewed 2 years ago

Mandarin has made importing MARC records easier. The set up for the spine label makes more since and more of what I wanted that our old software did not offer. When asking for tech support they are very prompt to respond and get back if they want to clarify a request. The tech support guys are the best.

Pros

I liked that they were so accommodating when we had to switch over from our other software in such a short time. They have been very patient with any questions or requests I have requested. I do not have a Library degree so I am probably not using it to its full potential. So glad to be able to print my own barcodes and spine labels. The barcodes have the title, author, school name and call # included.

Cons

Sometimes I have to log-in again, but that could possible be our internet server. Because I do not have a Library degree I am not sure what all the code are for, but I am sure if I asked they would help me. I just have not had time to ask. The Webex was informative, but too much information, too fast. I would have like a more interactive option. But you can join a group as many times as you want.

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 2 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.

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

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Mandarin (M5) Works for us

Reviewed 2 years ago

1. Not tried 'Inventory' yet. How do we stock-take using a 'databar reader' to scan books on shelves 2. Like running statistical reports for institutional reports 3. Need to spare time to fully explore and familiarize myself and my team on all aspects and modules of M5 4. Need to recreate home page of our CMI M5 to include all Collections held in the library

Pros

Using its Main Search interface for copy cataloging, especially running "Record Searches".

Cons

Groups Modules - seems very complicated.

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

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Wow! factor customer support to back up a very easy to use program!

Reviewed 2 years ago
Pros

The recent update has put everything into one platform and the best thing of all is that they are listening to their customers and adding what we need as we grow together.

Cons

Honestly, the only thing I can say negative is that it takes a little time for reports to generate. It would be nice if they were much faster but the updated version is already faster than the older one I was using.

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

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Mandarin

Reviewed a year ago

Excellent! As always, the technical support team at Mandarin is outstanding. Their response speed, willingness to help, follow through, and accessibility is the best.

Pros

Easy to use, M5 Reports seems easier than old method

Cons

Would like more kid friendly features, such as video book trailer ability

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

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Excellent program and excellent customer support

Reviewed a year ago

We've been using Mandarin for more years than I know of. Whenever we have an issue or suggestion, we email Mandarin and we get the quickest and best help ever.

Pros

Ease of use; functionality; easy to learn.

Cons

Some of the report tools are complicated.

Overall Rating
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Likelihood to recommend8/10

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VERSATILE TOOL FOR LIBRARIES AND FILES

Reviewed 3 years ago

Your online technical support is fast and effective

Pros

This quick tool facilitates your work by its great search capacity, oriented to the format of those we know on the web

Cons

Taking into account that the software is quite complete, there are functions that could be changed and give more information to the material or document that is already expired or that is no longer being used

Vendor response

Thank you Jorge. We appreciate your feedback.

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

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Mandarin - A Good Choice

Reviewed 2 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.

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

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Mandarin 5 Review

Reviewed 2 years ago
Pros

I like how easy it is to use Mandarin 5. I also like the customer support for when I have a problem or various questions. They are very quick to respond back to me and help solve the problem.

Cons

I like this software a lot but if I have to pick what I like the least it would be occasional quirks in the system that have to be fixed by Mandarin.

Overall Rating
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend5/10

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Review of Mandarin

Reviewed 2 years ago

Okay. Tech support is amazing, though.

Pros

Can be accessed on any computer Great technical support

Cons

The transfer of data from our old system to this one was mediocre at best (Came on board when the transfer had already occurred). I have to visit EVERY book and re-enter spine info. Also quite a few books were lumped in as bib-holdings for totally different books. I understand the imported data may have been in very bad shape as well. However the ability to change multiple records in Mandarin is time consuming and extremely cumbersome. I would have liked to see rows of books in spreadsheet format and be able to edit that way. As it is TOO many screens to scroll to before you can make the edits.

Vendor response

Hi Stella, We will have a technical support representative contact you ASAP. It looks like we have been able to assist you based on your email below. We are glad we were able to assist you. Alex, I just spoke with you and you were able to show me a MUCH faster way to edit these bib-holdings. THANK YOU. Best regards, Stella Marquez PE Teacher FACTS SIS Administrator M5 Library Administrator Blessed Sacrament School, Sandy UT

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

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Private School Library Automation Success

Reviewed 2 years ago

I am pleased with the Mandarin System and their Support staff.

Pros

The software was easy to learn and is user-friendly in our library. I would recommend this product to other private schools needing library automation.

Cons

Once the books were added to the inventory, making corrections in the edit function could be challenging resulting in more errors.

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 2 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.

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 2 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