There are several functions of National Library from the acquiring materials to the library until to placing on the respective shelves. After shelves systematically, the library provides services to the students, researchers and the public for their easy use of library materials. For less and damage of library materials, inventory-taking by RFID (Radio Frequency Identification System) and conservation is undertaken regularly.
Apart from that, for the promotion and dissemination of library and information subject, Library education activities, cooperation and collaboration activities with libraries associations from local and overseas are conducted.
National Library undertaking the acquisition, data processing, circulation and library development functions along with the timeline and advanced information and communication technology.
Acquisition is one of the main functions to acquire library materials to the library in various ways in order to be collection development. Library materials include printed materials such as book and periodical, monograph, pamphlet, map, and non-printed materials such as palm-leaf manuscript, parabeik manuscript and other kinds of manuscripts, music score note, photograph, movie, film, disc, video and audio-tape, records on paper and other medium and their reproductions.
The Library acquires its holdings through
1. Legal deposit,
2. Purchase by Government budget,
3. Exchange with libraries in abroad, gifts, donation from private and organization, requisitions,
Materials are added to the collections of the Library at a rate of 3,000 volumes per year.
a) Legal Deposit
The National Library has become a legal depository of Myanmar, since the Printers and Publishers Registrations Act promulgated in 1962. In 2014, it was changed to the Printing and Publishing Enterprise Law. A copy of any printed material must be given to the National Library according to the Law. However, government publications, reports of departments and organizations, publications that are excused by the above law and non-printed publications are not received by the National Library.
As the Depository Centre for United Nations Publications, materials from United Nations Organizations such as UNESCO, FAO, ESCAP and others are available for reference and research purposes.
As the National Library is responsible to collect local publications to meet its vision, the library purchases local publications, publications on Myanmar from other countries, research papers, dissertations, gazetteers, reference books, etc. by its annual budget.
c) Donation, Gifts and Exchange
By the exchange programme and gifts from oversea libraries and organizations, donation of private and organizations, the library has increased collection development. The Library also accepts the donation of specific donation of book collections and book lovers who want to keep their collections in a single place, and maintain as Special Collection Corner. There are average 3,000 volumes of books and periodicals per year.
(2) Data Processing
Data Processing is one of the main functions of the library to prepare book catalogues and periodical indexes in order to easily searching by the library users.
Bibliographic tools applied by the National Library are AACR 2 (Anglo−American Cataloguing Rules (Second Edition) for cataloguing, Dewey Decimal Classification 23 Edition for classification and Sears’ List of Subject Headings 21 Edition.
Library catalogues are into both way as card catalogue as OPAC. In order to easily searching for the library collections, the National Library has upgraded the National Library Myanmar Management Software (NLMM-Software) as a web-based integrated system.
Any library users can search the data of National Library’s literature property at www.nlm.gov.mm.
Among the various collections at National Library, local printed books are classified according to subjects. Reference books, government publications, rare books and collections about Myanmar that are written with English language, foreign books, ASEAN collections, UN collections, thesis, gazetteers, etc. are arranged by the accession numbers.
Rare and valuable ancient Myanmar manuscripts which got via donation are kept and maintained particularly as Myanmar literature heritage.