Civica is to provide Kent Libraries, the UK’s largest library authority, with new library management systems in a contract valued at £1.6 million over the next five years. The programme will see Kent join the South East Library Management System (SELMS) consortium, in order to achieve enhanced reader services for over 1.3 million people as well as procurement savings.
Under the agreement Kent’s new service will commence next year and will be delivered using Civica’s leading edge library software ‘Spydus’, which will allow customers to connect to the library’s database remotely via a user-friendly web interface. Procured as part of a fully managed service, Spydus provides enhanced search capability, encouraging online lending as well as speeding up access to existing library databases and catalogues.
SELMS is the UK’s primary library services consortium model, which is working to introduce online, automated library systems across the South East. It enables local authorities to share expert resources and to help deliver system efficiencies in response to the government’s efficiency agenda and Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) accessibility requirements.
The authorities involved in SELMS are Brighton & Hove City Council, Buckinghamshire County Council, London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham, Milton Keynes Council, Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead, West Berkshire Council and Wokingham District Council.
Cath Anley, Head of Libraries, Archives and Museums for Kent County Council said: "Our top priority is to ensure our customers have access to a reliable service, allowing them to browse library stock easily regardless of location and make their library experience as enjoyable as possible. The ability to do this online is imperative in today’s "always on" environment. Our work with SELMS and Civica will deliver an enhanced level of customer experience, underpinned by Civica’s state-of-the-art software platform, at the same time as offering cost savings."