As greater tax receipts start trickling in due to a successful referendum earlier this year, the administration at the Brookfield Public Library has started to set the wheels in motion for upgrading its cataloging procedure and providing a way for patrons to search the catalogs of nearby libraries.
On Oct. 26, the library’s board unanimously approved up to $66,000 for the library’s conversion back to the System Wide Automated Network (SWAN) for cataloging its collection. The move is designed to integrate the Brookfield Library’s cataloging system with that of 77 other Chicago suburban libraries.
As a result, patrons will be able to search for titles across the suburban area instead of just at the Brookfield Library alone. In addition, the SWAN system will cut down on tedious cataloging data entry for library staff, allowing them to devote time to other services.
Brookfield will present its request to become part of the SWAN network at SWAN’s next quarterly meeting on Dec. 1.
According to Brookfield Library Director Kimberly Litland, SWAN’s members have to approve Brookfield’s request to reconvert to the SWAN network. The library until the late 1990s was part of SWAN, but broke off to become a stand-alone library at that time.
Beginning in December or January, Litland said, the library would begin the long process of converting its catalog to the SWAN system, a conversion that will take up to nine months. The library will also be updating some of its computers, thanks to a donation of three computers from the Friends of the Library. Two of those computers will be used to replace ones now being used for catalog searches, Litland said.
“We also hope to upgrade work stations on the floor,” she added.