Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Publication Title

Exploring Discovery: The Front Door to Your Library's Licensed and Digitized Content



Publisher Name

American Library Association Editions

Publisher Location

Chicago, IL


The radical act of replacing a traditional OPAC and ILS with a hosted library services platform (LSP) and web-scale discovery (WSD) system creates the impetus for libraries to rethink core workflows and practices. Both of these tools have the potential to greatly improve access to library collections and enhance user experience, but only if the implementation is a collaborative effort between different stakeholders, technical experts and subject librarians, grounded in a thoughtful selection process that emphasizes user needs. Furthermore, because this model removes the traditional OPAC, subject librarians must take on the challenge of understanding the tool and work as partners with backend technical experts as well as the vendor so that they are not left out of providing research assistance as algorithms replace some traditional library skills.

Grounded in the literature of collaborative learning and librarian attitudes towards discovery systems, this chapter describe the process of creating a culture of collaboration centered on user needs. Such a model is central to the process of evaluation and implementation of a LSP and a WSD service, particularly in the context of a university with multiple campuses and diverse users. We established a well-structured collaboration model from the systems evaluation phase, and continued to apply the model to the implementation phase. In 2010, the initial solution was to keep a traditional OPAC, and implement WorldCat Local as article discovery tool while doing in-depth user studies and gathering feedback from subject librarians to create a data-driven decision making habit. In 2014, we determined that Alma and Primo should replace the current Voyager ILS and WorldCat Local. The implementation process started in January 2015 and will go live in July 2015. The chapter will share the journey of creating a collaborative model and implementing unified resource management and discovery.



Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.