Customers using the new Kōtui service in public libraries are loving the improved service, says Glenn Webster, head librarian for Marlborough District Libraries, the first library service in the country to implement the new collection search-and-management system.
"They find what they're looking for more quickly and easily, and have access to much more information than before," Glenn says.
Kōtui is a shared service that provides New Zealand public libraries with an affordable, efficient option to help them manage their collections, and includes leading edge functionality for library users that would otherwise have been unaffordable to many councils.
Kōtui makes it possible to search most resources of a public library – digital and print - from a single access point. The service also allows people to view the digital items online or put a hold on the print items they want to borrow. This can be done from a computer or smart phone, from home, school or business, or from within the library.
The subscription-based service, managed by the National Library of New Zealand, went live in Blenheim last month, followed by Taupo on 6 October and New Plymouth on 26 October. Nelson City and Tasman District Libraries will roll out in November, followed by nine other libraries over the next two years.
Librarians will be able to view Kōtui at this year's Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa (LIANZA) conference held in Wellington from 30 October to 2 November, where they will also be able to talk to the people involved in designing and delivering the service, as well as librarians who are already using it.
The Kōtui service is an integration of products and services from EBSCO Publishing (the leading research database and eBook provider for libraries and the provider of EBSCO Discovery Service), SirsiDynix (an international supplier of leading library automation solutions) and Computer Concepts Ltd (a national IT Service Provider). It arose from collaboration between a group of public libraries, the Association of Public Library Managers (APLM), Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) and the National Library.
"We are supporting New Zealanders' ability to access and use information important to their lives by providing free internet access in public libraries and maraes through APNK. And now, with Kōtui, we are making it easier to search online for all materials held by a public library," says National Librarian Bill Macnaught. "We have been fortunate to work with leading technological providers to develop a service tailor made to meet the needs of New Zealand public libraries."
"EBSCO Publishing is pleased to be part of this ground-breaking K`ōtui project, providing New Zealand public libraries with improved access to their valuable library collections," commented Ian McLeod, the company's Director of Sales for Australia and New Zealand. "EBSCO's contribution, EBSCO Discovery Service, delivers a unique and integrated service, allowing patrons an easier way to search library collections and a faster way to find better results, for the benefit of library patrons and library staff alike. EBSCO is proud to be continuing our work with New Zealand public libraries and to be a partner in Kōtui."
"SirsiDynix is proud to be a part of the groundbreaking service Kōtui is offering New Zealand libraries," says SirsiDynix Chief Executive Officer Bill Davison. "Our industry-leading SirsiDynix Symphony integrated library system provides a platform of unparalleled strength, flexibility and adaptability to accommodate the diverse needs of the Kōtui member libraries in New Zealand."
"As a company passionate about delivering and supporting great technology solutions Computer Concepts is excited to be playing a key role in the Kōtui project," says Alan Leigh, Director at Computer Concepts. "Kōtui is a fantastic initiative which we hope will benefit all New Zealanders."
More information is available at www.kotui.org.nz