University of Nebraska Omaha is 100th OCLC WorldShare Management Services user in production

    The University of Nebraska Omaha is now live with OCLC WorldShare Management Services, making it the 100th institution worldwide to fully implement the new Web-based, cooperative library management and discovery services.

    “We wanted a library management system that was cutting-edge,” said Steve Shorb, Dean of the Criss Library at the University of Nebraska Omaha. “Moving to WorldShare Management Services is going to allow us to keep pace with current and emerging trends in technology and take full advantage of new developments and applications created specifically for libraries as they become available.”

    WorldShare Management Services provide a Web-based environment that streamlines cataloging, acquisitions, license management and circulation workflows, and offers the WorldCat Local discovery service for library users. WorldShare Management Services (WMS) were released for general availability in the United States in July 2011. Today, just 20 months later, 100 libraries on three continents—Australia, Europe and North America—are already using the services and some 65 more are in the implementation process to begin using the services in the future.

    “As we commemorate the 100th implementation of WMS at the University of Nebraska Omaha, we are also celebrating our shared commitment to library cooperation,” said Jay Jordan, OCLC President and CEO, on campus Wednesday to help introduce the services to students and faculty. “Throughout its history, OCLC has been fortunate to work with leading libraries to help create innovative new services. The OCLC cooperative worldwide is grateful to the Criss Library staff for its part in helping to improve library workflows and provide exciting and powerful discovery tools for library users.”

    Working together with WorldShare Management Services, libraries can share data, applications and workflow improvements with peer institutions, end users and partners. Since WorldShare Management Services are built on an open, collaborative platform, libraries can add the features and functions needed to support their unique communities. Libraries without development resources can take advantage of applications developed by others in the library community.

    “We wanted a platform that was more flexible and open to APIs,” said Rene Erlandson, Director, Virtual Services, Criss Library. “We wanted a more full-featured ILS, and WMS gives us the flexibility and features that will help us continue to grow and add new services as they are developed within the community.”

    That spirit of cooperation in the WMS community was a key to the decision to move to WorldShare. “It’s wonderful to work in a dot-org environment, rather than a dot-com environment,” said Mr. Shorb.

    Moving to WorldShare Management Services meant that Criss Library staff would change the way they approached their work. “Our staff has been open to the process; Steve has created an atmosphere that is receptive to change at the library,” said Ms. Erlandson. “Staff has been looking forward to using a system that is more flexible and allows them to streamline their processes. We have been able to cut down steps in our workflows—in some cases from seven steps to two.”

    “The Criss Library laid the groundwork for a successful change effort,” said Rob Ross, Director, Implementation Programs, OCLC. “It was clear that staff members had already considered how their roles might change, what professional growth opportunities this transition presented them, and what new value they could create for patrons. This adventurous spirit, along with tremendous energy, creativity and passion from the library’s leadership, contributed significantly to the overall success of their transition to WMS.”

    The move to WorldShare Management Services has already generated cost and time savings for the Criss Library. According to Mr. Shorb, the move has helped the library to acquire 300,000 e-book titles for the campus, and in the future they plan to reallocate library staff to create an institutional repository for the university.

    “In the future we hope to have the ability to stream video and become more involved with distance learning, online education and MOOCs,” said Mr. Shorb. “By streamlining other processes and eliminating server maintenance, some of our IT staff might have more bandwidth to focus on streaming video and help us grow our digital collections.”

    Moving to WorldShare Management Services helped Mr. Shorb save time in his plan to replace his library’s ILS. “Once we made the commitment to WMS, my two-year plan was cut down to six months,” he said.

    More about OCLC WorldShare Management Services can be found on the OCLC website.