TAMPA, FLORIDA. School Librarians and staff members held their breath on one side of the continent and systems engineers and epixtech staff members held their breath on the other side, as 130 schools in the Tampa, Florida-area Hillsborough County School District went "live" with their newly-installed Horizon System. Eventually, they will go live with another 45 schools, all by Christmas 2000. Hillsborough County School District serves 167,000 students. They are using the core Horizon system, which includes cataloging, Circ, and PAC modules. Before Hillsborough went live with their new Horizon system, they were automating their libraries with a DOBIS system, which is a mainframe system from the 1970's. The entire change from their old system to their new Horizon system went without a hitch, and that's in a week and a half.
The school district was so excited to get their new system that they actually held festivities to get ready for the changeover. The school district, which also includes a trade school and a public library, held a contest on what to name their PAC, with the winning name being "CyberCat." Visitors to the Hillsborough County School District Web Page will see a newly designed web page made specifically to attract various ages of school children to all that their libraries have to offer. "I'm so excited about the new system and all that it can do for us," says Library Processing Coordinator Christine Van Brunt. "You don't even want to get me started on the kids and the Web page. We had a lot of fun running the contest and designing the page. Of course, we couldn't have done any of this without epixtech's Horizon system, which gave us the flexibility and functionality we needed."
"There are many reasons why this went so well," says Project Manager, Swanny Simpson. "We did a good job, but so did the people at Hillsborough. They went through the training and then trained their people, and then those people trained a team on how to load and configure the software. They tested it. We tested it. They loaded their PC's and then tested them. They tested their printers and worked with vendors on configuring the information that has to be loaded. It was all done so well—a textbook large school district library automation system installation."
"To be able to have this many schools go live with no significant problems is truly amazing," adds Lana Porter, epixtech's President and CEO. "The cooperation between the Hillsborough people and our staff made such a difference. They were ready to learn and we had the information and the system to give them. The result was a great experience for everyone involved. I'm proud of our customers and I'm very proud of our people."
About epixtech, inc.
epixtech is the leading provider of automation technologies, solutions and services for more than 7,600 libraries worldwide. epixtech's award-winning library automation systems, ConnectLib solutions for patron self-services, desktop management and interlibrary loans and its new Web-based solutions and services empower libraries and their patrons. epixtech was formerly Ameritech Library Services, a subsidiary of Ameritech, and became a private corporation in December 1999. epixtech's library automation solutions meet the needs of academic, research, public, corporate, consortia and K-12 school libraries. Headquartered in Utah, epixtech has offices in Evanston, Illinois; Waterloo, Ontario; as well as in Australia, France, Ireland, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Taiwan, epixtech, inc. is located at 400 West 5050 North, Provo, Utah 84604; Telephone: 800-288-8020; fax: 801-223-5202; and www.epixtech.com.