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hermionish.ethicsIn my last post, I cited the ALA Code of Ethics and mentioned that I’ve had a encounters in my line of work in which I’ve referred to those guiding principles…specifically #1, 3, 5, and 6.

I’ll focus on #1 in this post:

We provide the highest level of service to all library users through appropriate and usefully organized resources; equitable service policies; equitable access; and accurate, unbiased, and courteous responses to all requests.

Appropriate and usefully organized resources…

For at least the past 6 years, my library’s catalog has not been accessible online. Don’t get me wrong: we’ve been automated for years. Self-hosted Destiny without the system configured for external access.

Before Destiny, the library had Winnebago Spectrum (Sagebrush). Destiny and Spectrum were designed for school media centers. Back-end functionality was limited and the patron experience was definitely sub-par.

In early May, we migrated from Destiny (Follett) to Apollo by Biblionix. Our ILS is now completely web-based with no need for back-ups. Patrons can now — as they’ve been able to with other libraries (for years) — browse our holdings from home or their mobile device and even log into their accounts.

Migrating to Apollo provided me with the needed kick in the pants to merge several superfluous parts of my library’s collection such as two separate juvenile non-fiction collections and a classic picture book collection. (We’re a small, rural library — shelf space is limited and these items weren’t circulating as they should because patrons had to look in a different area!) Colorful spine labels help to differentiate these items from others shelved in the same collection.

Another perk of Apollo is that we’ve been able to add shelving locations to parts of our collection. For example, patrons (and library staff) will be able to better locate materials shelved in our holiday picture book collection, board books, level readers, and easy chapter books.

By migrating to Apollo, we finally took a step into the 21st century and I believe we’re able to provide our patrons a higher level of service with a collection that is now more accessible (and better organized) for all.

In case you’re curious, you can access our catalog here: