Sno-Isle Libraries offers an online catalog, making it easy for customers to find, reserve and receive library materials.
Starting Feb. 1, customers begin transitioning to a new online catalog that will provide a better and broader experience.
“This new catalog brings a new level of service and opportunities to our customers and communities,” Sno-Isle Libraries Executive Director Jonalyn Woolf-Ivory said. “Our mission is to be a ‘community doorway’ and often that doorway is online. It is important that the online experience is as welcoming, professional and safe as it is at our community libraries.”
The new catalog is powered by software from BiblioCommons, a firm that focuses on serving public libraries. Sno-Isle Libraries joins Seattle, King County and hundreds of other libraries across the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand as customers.
“We like to think of it as a ‘discovery layer’ to the more than a million items available through Sno-Isle Libraries,” said Jeanne Crisp, Director of Facilities & Special Projects, who is overseeing the transition.
At its core, the new catalog provides better search results of all those items. The new catalog offers more. Besides helping customers get the things they’re looking for and discover new items, the BiblioCommons tool lets customers choose to share those experiences.
Customers can read reviews, lists and comments from library staff and other customers. Sno-Isle Libraries customers will also have the choice to write and share their own reviews and other online activities.
A key component of the new catalog experience is choice – your choice, your decision.
“Protecting privacy is important for all of us,” said Crisp, adding that privacy-related policies and statements from Sno-Isle Libraries and the companies we work with are available at sno-isle.org/privacy. “The customer decides whether they want to make comments, reviews and recommendations and if they do, whether or not to share those activities.”
The move to the new catalog has been in process for more than a year. In late December, a group of high volume library users got an early look at the catalog.
“We had a number of customers tell us they like the new search and were enthusiastic about the sharing features,” Crisp said. "We also received some great ideas from customers during this beta phase."
With the launch happening on Feb. 1, there will be a one-month transition period to help customers get used to the new software. During the month, customers will be able to use either the new catalog or what is now being called the “classic catalog.”
“We all deal with change differently, so we’ve built in a transition period to let customers choose whether to test the water one toe at a time or jump in with both feet,” Crisp said.
You don’t need to be a library customer to look at the catalog.
“Just go to sno-isle.org, click on the green “Discover your new catalog!” and have fun discovering what we offer,” Crisp said. “And if you live in our service area and don’t have a card, you can get a card online and use your library immediately.”