This summer, Elmhurst Public Library transitions to an upgraded catalog system in order to provide our patrons with even better service and greater access to materials.
EPL has long been a part of the SWAN consortium, shared with 80 other libraries. Because the consortium is so large, it's hard to make changes or upgrades to the catalog. Also, the catalog is slow and can be difficult to search because of the vast number of items included. By becoming a standalone library, we can realize upgrades sooner, make patron-friendly changes quickly, and keep more of our collection here for Elmhurst residents.
You will still have access to items from other libraries. Although we are leaving the consortium, we are joining a group of libraries that have formed a partnership for sharing resources. Unlike our current consortium, we will have control to change and upgrade our catalog, while you will have access to collections that are larger and more varied than our current consortium.
During the month of August, while we're transitioning to the new system, you will still be able to check out and request materials; however, staff will have to manually enter requests, so you must have your library card with you.
In order to place a hold, you can call us, IM us, send us an email or place your hold in person. Also, if you want to keep your reading history or wish lists, you must download them before Aug. 1, and then set up these features with your new account in the upgraded system. If you need help doing this, ask a staff member or check elmhurstpubliclibrary.org for detailed information.
We're confident that these changes will benefit EPL patrons, and look forward to the transition at the end of the summer.
Mary Beth Campe is director of Elmhurst Public Library