Resource Sharing Works for Small Rural Libraries

AspenCat is consortium of 30 smaller libraries in Colorado.  Since November 2009, these libraries have been migrating to a Koha-based integrated library system solution supported by PTFS, Inc and CLiC. About half of the libraries have migrated to the union catalog, and another 15 will be moving over this fall. Evaluations show patrons like the system, and they love the easy access to a much larger collection. The average AspenCat collection is 15,000 items. When all libraries have migrated, patrons will have access to nearly half a million items. But even half-way through the migration, the numbers of borrows between libraries in impressive. Here’s a chart to date of resource sharing growth.

Sending Library Dec. 2009 Jan. 2010 Feb. 2010 March 2010 April 2010 May 2010 June 2010 July 2010 Total
Akron Public* 6 16 9 19 20 18 22 21 131
Bethune Schools*** 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Burlington Public*** 0 0 0 0 0 18 41 47 106
Dololres Public* 11 26 26 35 43 38 58 71 308
Manitou Springs Public* 12 45 36 49 48 32 55 44 321
Nederland Public* 8 30 36 39 32 24 25 38 232
Ouray Public* 13 40 41 44 44 68 57 89 396
Ruby Sisson** 0 0 0 0 13 70 56 82 221
Silverton Public** 0 0 0 0 8 23 28 17 76
Silverton Schools*** 0 0 0 0 8 0 0 0 8
Stratton Public** 1 5 6 6 4 5 17 16 60
WestEnd Schools* 1 5 6 6 4 0 0 0 22
Wellington Public* 14 17 31 46 41 50 70 110 379
Yuma Public** 0 0 0 0 3 34 44 133 214
                   
Total 66 184 191 244 268 380 473 668 2474
                   
*Pilot Library                  
**Live on AspenCat 4/21/10                
***Live on AspenCat 5/5/10                

 Many of these libraries had only loaned 5 or so items a month prior to moving to AspenCat. Having been studying the statistics on Prospector and Marmot for years and now with AspenCat, I think we have found a LIBRARY TRUISM: If you make it seamlessly easy for patrons to borrow for other library collection, they will and they will love you for it!

You can search AspenCat at: http://www.aspencat.info/.

Valerie Horton

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