The Great Migration

Behind the scenes, over the past several months the staff of the Altoona Area Public Library have been preparing for a big move. The move has nothing to do with our physical location; it has to do with our data. On June 16th the library will officially be using a different ILS (Integrated Library System). ILS software helps us manage the vast amount of items and patrons we keep track of so you can check out our materials. In addition to saving us money, the move to the new ILS will connect us to many other libraries in the state that use the same system, pooling our resources together.

By this fall, all eight libraries in Blair County will have gone through the same move that Altoona is about to embark. So what does this mean for you? What you will notice immediately is that our check-out times will be longer on many items. This has already taken effect. As the other libraries approach their move dates, we will all be bringing our circulation polices into alignment. Eventually, you will only need one card to check out materials for the entire Blair County Library System and you will be able to search one catalog to see the entire county system’s holdings. The catalog you search for items online with will also look different, have more features, and we are confident will be much more user friendly than our current system.

We ask for and appreciate your patience as our staff adjusts to this transition. There may be longer lines at checkout, especially on June 16th. We will all need a few weeks to get used to the new system, but we look forward to the new functionality and the one card for the county libraries. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask one of our knowledgeable staff. We look forward to hearing any feedback you have. Happy reading!