Shire of Derby West Kimberley has become the first local government area in Australia to choose Koha to support the delivery of its public library services.
The Shire has established public libraries at Derby and Fitzroy Crossing to support access to information services by its diverse and geographically dispersed community. CALYX information essentials has been contracted to provide Koha services including software implementation and configuration, data conversion, training and ongoing support. The system will be hosted off site in Calyx’ state of the art data centre. Derby and Fitzroy Crossing Public libraries are expected to be live on Koha before July 2012.
Koha is the world’s first and foremost open source library management system. Used around the world by academic, public, school and special libraries, Koha is fully featured and web 2.0 rich. Originally developed for the Horowhenua Library Trust in New Zealand, Koha is now developed and maintained by a world wide community of librarians and software developers. The home of the Koha community is at http://koha-community.org.
Kate Hithersay, Library Manager for Shire of Derby West Kimberley, stated that the Shire’s current library system lacks functionality and flexibility and is approaching end of life. “In selecting a replacement system, price was a factor but by no means the only consideration”, Kate said. She feels that Koha’s full feature set is impressive and consistent with the Shires needs. According to Kate, the library wanted to be able to explore the product features before becoming engaged with a vendor. Calyx provided a demonstration system that enabled staff to do so in considerable depth.
According to Irma Birchall, Calyx Director, “the cloud computing model we offer will enable the Shire to save time and money, achieve scalability and flexibility with predictable costs, and to focus on reader needs rather than infrastructure. This is Calyx’ first deployment of Koha to the public library sector in Australia. We used to champion Koha because of the advantages of the open source approach. Now these advantages are realised and we champion Koha’s features, reliability and flexibility. We are delighted to assist Shire of Derby West Kimberley to improve the library services available to its community.”