Integrated Library Systems Report

 

Earlier this year, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) contracted with WiLS to study and report on the current state of shared Integrated Library Systems (ILS) operated by Wisconsin’s public library systems. The consultant was asked to collect information from each ILS consortia and to develop cost and operational comparisons that will be valuable when considering larger units of service for systems and ILS in the state. The report would also identify the remaining larger stand-alone libraries and counties in the state and determine their reasons for non-participation in the consortia.
 
Some facts that were shared about the ILS consortia in Wisconsin:

  • most of the consortia in the state are using one of two products from Innovative Interfaces, Inc.;
  • as independent entities, there is very little consistency among the consortia, including how the budgets are structured;
  • no mechanism is in place to measure satisfaction with the ILS consortia.

The DPI also has some recommendations for how to move toward more consistency and cost-effective centralized services. A second phase likely will continue into 2015 to analyze the results and propose changes to the current structure for savings or efficiencies and to avoid duplication of resources and efforts. The DPI’s recommendations based on the results of the study are available at http://pld.dpi.wi.gov/files/pld/pdf/ILS_snapshot_2014.pdf. The full ILS study developed by WiLS is available http://pld.dpi.wi.gov/files/pld/pdf/WiLS_ILS_study_final.pdf.

Libraries: More Important than Ever

 

"Why Libraries are More Important than Ever" is a presentation by Sari Feldman, President Elect of the American Library Association, discussing with a Cleveland City Club audience the increasing relevance of libraries and their impact on our communities in the digital age.

Sari Feldman is the Executive Director of the Cuyahoga County Public Library honored with Library Journal's 5-star rating and the busiest per-capita library system in the nation. In 2013 she was the recipient of the PLA Charlie Robinson Award, established to recognize innovative public library directors.

September is Library Card Sign-Up Month

 

September is a time when libraries across the country remind parents that the most important school supply of all is a library card. Libraries offer a welcoming environment for people in the community of all ages to come together to share materials, attend special programs, and access important educational resources that support academic achievement. For promotional materials visit the American Library Association and for more information visit The Campaign for American Libraries.

Raising Visibility for the Library

 

Wisconsin Librarians are invited to gather this fall season for an informal discussion around the theme of raising visibility for the library in the community. Discuss the significant impact new technology, shifting expectations and budget fluctuations have had on library services and the successful ways your library has evolved to meet the changing needs of your unique community. Six regional meetings around the state will be hosted by WiLS and WLA. For more information visit WiLS 2014 Regional Community Meetings.

Plan Now for Voter Registration Day

Celebrate Democracy in America

 

Libraries across the county are encouraged to join community volunteers and organizations nationwide for National Voter Registration Day on September 28 to create pervasive awareness of voter registration opportunities. In 2008 six million Americans didn’t vote because they missed a registration deadline or didn’t know how to register. The National Association of Secretaries of State passed a five-year resolution proclaiming the fourth Tuesday of September as National Voter Registration Day. This year’s National Voter Registration Day is particularly important as Americans will vote in national and statewide elections. Ballots will include contests for 471 congressional seats, 36 governorships, and the makeup of 46 state legislatures. National Voter Registration Day volunteers can help provide an opportunity to celebrate the rights that unite us as Americans; democracy.


Visit www.NationalVoterRegistrationDay.org to learn more about the event and sign up to become a National Voter Registration Day partner by September 5, 2014 to receive free resources. The new website features resources that make it easy to plan and promote voter registration events, including field planning and communications toolkits, posters, social media graphics, and much more. Follow the conversation on social media via the hashtag #CelebrateNVRD, on Facebook at facebook.com/CelebrateNVRD, on Twitter at twitter.com/CelebrateNVRD, and on Instagram at instagram.com/CelebrateNVRD.

E-rate Modernization

In the August 6 E-Rate Modernization webinar, The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) discusses the efforts to provide robust connectivity for all schools and libraries through proposed changes to E-rate support for broadband connectivity. The FCC released a public notice last week that opened a comment period opportunity within the next few weeks for libraries to suggest ways in which the e-rate program can support their needs. Discussions of proposals included transparency and affordability of pricing/costs, CIPA challenges, improved application processes, opportunities for schools and libraries in close proximity, contract term issues, and support for economically challenged areas of the country.

Wisconsin Digital Library Catalog Upgrades

The Wisconsin Digital Library Catalog of OverDrive e-books and e-audiobooks recently added new features (view demo) including the ability to suspend holds, automatically check out held items, view recommended titles, and access more accurate search results:

 

Suspend / "Freeze" Holds
When you leave town or know that you are going to be otherwise occupied, you can "freeze" holds for OverDrive ebooks and electronic audiobooks. In the Holds section of your OverDrive account, you will be able to select an area called "Options" to manage your holds.
 
Hold Auto-Checkout
Elect to have held items automatically checked out to you when they become available. If you prefer the current system, you will still have three days after your hold becomes available to check it out. Either way, an email notice will be sent out as soon as your requested item is available. You can elect to use auto-checkout by using the Options area for each title in the your Holds section of your OverDrive account.

 

Recommended Titles
When you log in to the Wisconsin Digital Library, you will now see a list of recommendations based on the items you have checked out or on hold. If you do not have items on hold or checked out, you will not see these recommendations.

 

More Relevant Search Results
Searching the digital library will now return shorter, more relevant lists.

2014 Public Library Directories

The 2014 Wisconsin Public Library Directory from the Department of Public Instruction’s Public Library Development Team is now online in PDF and Excel formats. The directory is based on data compiled from the 2013 Public Library Annual Report and subsequent, ongoing updates. Library directors are asked to please review the information for their libraries and report any corrections.

The PDF version includes a combined "Directory of Public Libraries and Their Branches" listed by city, followed by an alphabetical index of library and branch names. The document also includes system and resource library directory information.

The Excel file has three sheets containing information for all 383 public libraries and services, 82 branches, and the state's 17 regional library systems. This Excel file is useful as a merge source for mailing labels or form letters.

New Workforce Act Recognizes Libraries

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014 (WIOA) was signed into law on July 22 to improve the delivery of job training and workforce development. The new bill recognizes the important role public libraries play in improving our workforce development system by making them eligible for funds as One-Stop partners. The Act is an amendment and reauthorization of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 which established a national network of One-Stop Career Centers to provide assistance with employment and training services to all individuals (including people with disabilities). There are currently 1,700 One-Stops across the United States providing an expansive array of job search services and resources job seekers need to access the kinds of skills training, career information, and education that are required for today’s job market.

The new legislation instructs State and Local Workforce Development Boards to build “digital literacy skills” through training centers to help job seekers access employment, education, training, and support services to succeed in the labor market and to match employers with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy. In general, the Act takes effect on July 1, 2015, the first full program year after enactment, unless otherwise noted. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) will issue further guidance on the time frames for implementation of these changes and proposed regulations reflecting the changes in WIOA soon after enactment. 

The Institute of Museums and Library Services (IMLS) will continue to support collaborations between libraries and federally funded adult education programs to help Americans take advantage of workforce development resources. IMLS recently partnered with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education (OCTAE) to assist the estimated 3 million Americans who are seeking access to federal job information, education, and training by connecting them through resources at their public libraries. IMLS partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration (ETA) will highlight effective practices and encourage additional collaboration between the workforce investment system and public libraries.