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OCLC Wise Implementation Underway in Flanders

Smart Libraries Newsletter [November 2018]


OCLC has positioned Wise as its strategic library automation offering for public libraries. WorldShare Management Services has proven to be successful among academic libraries but has not seen much adoption by public libraries (see figure 1). One of the largest public library groups using WorldShare Management Services are the public libraries in Northern Territory in Australia that selected the product in 2016.

Wise, as detailed in the April 2018 issue of Smart Libraries Newsletter, has recently been launched in the United States as its key product for public libraries. Its design emphasizes patron services and aims to provide libraries new capabilities for engagement with the communities they serve. Wise provides a comprehensive library portal in addition to traditional online catalog search and retrieval features. Allen County Public Library has engaged with OCLC as an early implementor for Wise.

Distribution of 447 WorldShare Management Services implementations by type
Distribution of 447 WorldShare Management Services implementations by type

Wise is based on software originally developed by the Dutch company Huijsmans en Kuijpers Automatisering BV (HKA). The current Wise platform is based on the bicatWise system, used by most of the public libraries in the Netherlands. The original bicat software was developed by HKA when it was founded in 1983 and was based on the FoxPro database. The software subsequently has been entirely re-engineered with modern technology components and has evolved from a traditional ILS design to one more focused on patron services. OCLC acquired HKA in 2013 for $11,523,200 according to its 2014 consolidated financial statement.

At the time that OCLC acquired HKA, bicatWise was used in about 66 percent of the public libraries in the Netherlands. Most of the other Dutch public libraries use Infor's v-smart library management system. The product had not been used extensively outside the Netherlands.

Following a major public tender, the libraries in the Flemish region of Belgium selected OCLC's Wise library management system in 2017 and are working through a phased implementation. This project represents one of the largest groups of libraries outside of the Netherlands to use bicatWise.

This project will result in a centralized library system for all public libraries in the region, displacing a number of incumbent implementations spanning several products. The implementation will take place in four phases, representing each of the provinces in the area, including Limburg, East Flanders, West Flanders, and Flemish Brabant and some libraries in the municipality of Brussels. This project extends user community of the Wise library management system beyond the Netherlands into the adjacent region of Flanders in Belgium.

OCLC began marketing Wise in the United States in March 2018. The Allen County Public Library anticipates placing OCLC Wise into production later in 2018.

View Citation
Publication Year:2018
Type of Material:Article
Language English
Published in: Smart Libraries Newsletter
Publication Info:Volume 38 Number 11
Issue:November 2018
Publisher:ALA TechSource
Place of Publication:Chicago, IL
Company: OCLC
Products: OCLC Wise
Record Number:24071
Last Update:2022-11-29 00:26:33
Date Created:2019-03-05 17:47:51