by Chloe Gunn
When the Catalyst Koha team sat with Wendy Fraser, the Libary Services Manager at Horowhenua Libraries, Wendy emphasised the importance of the Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) as the digital front door of the libraries. The OPAC needs to reflect the library as a modern and vibrant third space while always keeping the collection at the centre. Alongside this, Fraser wanted it to be informative and easy to navigate while remaining attractive for new visitors.
The new features improve the appearance and overall user experience. Some of the new highlights include; a customisable slider of resources which allows librarians to choose which books they wish to showcase, customisable content blocks now bring attention to useful library collections (such as eBooks and online resources), and a jump-to opening hours widget answers that most frequent question. The navigation and search bar have also been updated in both look and usability.
After the project was launched, Fraser reflected:
Already we have had positive feedback, not just on the local front, but internationally. The Online Public Access Catalogue has turned out better than I envisioned. When we first met with Catalyst, I just had lots of ideas and a lot of what I didn’t want. Catalyst designers have been able to take all of that and make it a reality. It has been a very rewarding process, and we are delighted with the result.
Horowhenua Libraries have set the bar for Koha libraries all over the world by modernising their appearance and usability. The site has gained admirers from as far away as Nigeria, soon to adopt the new theme in true open source spirit. Horowhenua Libraries has come full circle, with 2019 marking their 20th Koha anniversary. Horowhenua Libraries were the first to adopt and support the Koha platform, and now Koha is used by 15,000 libraries and has over 50 vendors. Again Horowhenua Libraries lead the way with the innovation of their online presence.
Read more about Koha on our Koha web page.
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Catalyst is a New Zealand-owned and operated where values, community, and integrity are paramount. Since 1997, Catalyst has to using the world’s best open source software and tools to deliver robust IT solutions for our clients. We have grown commitments to our clients, a culture of collaboration consistently experiencing the superior economic and social value that open source delivers.