On September 15, Fort Bend County Libraries (FBCL) will launch a new online catalog system by Polaris Library Systems, a leading provider of library-automation technology. The upgrade to Polaris replaces an integrated library system (ILS) that is more than 12 years old.
The upgrade to Polaris marks a new era in FBCL’s online library experience. In addition to the online library catalog, Polaris also encompasses the customer database and circulation system that is used to check items in and out. The new system will provide a more efficient means to manage resources, reduce costs, boost productivity, and improve customer satisfaction. Library users will save time and get better search results with the Polaris system’s improved searching ability and ease-of-use.
The conversion to this new system is a huge endeavor, involving the transfer of more than 900,000 records for library materials and the accounts of more than 375,600 cardholders. Starting September 1, library customers will still be able to search the current online catalog, but they cannot place holds until after the new system goes live on September 15.
Fort Bend County Libraries researched a number of possible ILS replacements prior to the decision to use Polaris. Each company was evaluated on the basis of functionality, as well as its research-and-development track record. After an extensive review process, the Polaris solution was selected as being the best fit for FBCL based on Polaris’ ability to incorporate new concepts and features.
For more information about the transition to Polaris, watch for updates on the library’s webpage – www.fortbend.lib.tx.us.