Frequently Asked Questions About ByWater Solutions
Want to learn more about ByWater Solutions? Who are we? Who do we support? And what is our mission?
What is ByWater Solutions?
We are an open source technology company that provides products, training, support, and hosting for public libraries, academic libraries, K-12 libraries, law libraries, special libraries, museums, and nonprofits across the world!
How Did ByWater Get Started?
While ByWater officially welcomed the first library partner in 2009, you can say that ByWater formed when the friendship of CEO and CRO, Brendan and Nate, began when they were three. The pair grew up and Brendan had been working in libraries and was introduced to the open source community through the Koha ILS. Nate was already working in sales and the two struck up a partnership with the mission of offering the best customer support available to libraries. Over the last 12 years, the goal of "happy partners" was the center of all work ByWater has done and the company has grown to over 35 employees who support thousands of libraries worldwide.
Can You Talk a Little Bit About Your Mission and Goals?
ByWater Solutions was created with the express goal of changing the way libraries interact with their software systems and the vendors who support them. We are a small grassroots company made up of librarians, technology specialists, and customer service fanatics who believe that libraries deserve the freedom to own their software and to decide who supports it. We believe that vendors need to constantly work to keep their customers happy, and not rely on long contract terms to maintain a strong customer base.
Libraries stay with ByWater Solutions because they want to, not because they are legally bound. We believe that libraries deserve to have access to a personalized, comprehensive support system at a reasonable cost. Our service solutions are all-inclusive and are tailored to take the complexity out of interacting with a vendor.
Because the support package covers essentially everything, your staff will never have to worry if a question or problem will carry an extra price to fix.
What Are Your Beliefs?
We believe in empowering libraries by giving them the technological flexibility and freedom they deserve through the use of open source software with comprehensive and honest support.
We value the open source community and being embedded in it.
We have a transparent pricing model and never piecemeal charge for support.
Our partners' satisfaction is the most meaningful measurement of our continued success; we pride ourselves in providing complete partner fulfillment in all we do.
Who Are Your Staff?
We are made up of a diverse group of librarians, book lovers, technology and data geeks, photographers, Tolkien fans, space nerds, genealogists, knitters, gamers, animal lovers (furry or hairless), and most importantly, open source fanatics who share our culture to positively impact our clients and our community. Over 85% of our staff have their MLIS and more have previously worked in libraries. Our staff is located in over 22 states to serve our customers located throughout the country. All members of the ByWater team take part in the daily support of our customers.
You can learn more about our staff here: https://bywatersolutions.com/about-us
What Products Does ByWater Support?
ByWater began supporting Koha ILS in 2009. Since then, we've expanded our offerings to offer a wide-variety of open source platforms for libraries.
Koha Integrated Library System (ILS) - Today's ILS market is drastically changing; libraries worldwide are quickly learning that traditional software models that command large price tags and offer little in terms of support and flexibility are becoming things of the past. Adopting an open source integrated library system not only lowers the price you pay for your software but more importantly it empowers your organization to take control of your technology and drive the direction of the ILS. Because of this development model, open source software offers an impressive suite of functionality that is updated on a constant basis.
Aspen Discovery Layer - Aspen is a full-featured Discovery System that integrates with eContent and other third-party providers, giving your patrons comprehensive access to all of your materials in one place. Aspen combines your library catalog with e-content, digital archives, and enrichment from all major third-party providers. It also improves relevancy and ease of use, provides native reading recommendations, displays all formats of titles within one result (record grouping), and much more. Aspen was created to give users an improved experience over other Discovery systems with less impact on library budgets.
Libki Kiosk Management System - Libki is a cross-platform pc reservation booking and time management system designed to allow time limited access to computers on a network. Libki is ideally suited for use in locations where a controlled computing environment is paramount such as public access systems, libraries, school computer laboratories and more!
CORAL ERM - We’ve watched print journals shrink over the last decade and move into an electronic atmosphere. This provided easy access for our users, but what about managing electronic resources for our libraries and organizations? CORAL ERM is an electronic resources management system consisting of 5 flexible modules designed around the core components our electronic resources.
Folio - Folio is an open-source library services platform that integrates print and electronic resource management. It includes core library management functionality, is built on a modern architecture to ensure continuous innovation, and supports the integration of applications from third-party providers
What Types of Libraries Do You Support?
We support thousands of libraries around the world. We offer different solutions for different types of libraries including public, academic, school, special, private and law. Over the years, we have served larger libraries and larger communities while still offering our same level of service to small libraries.
You can see a full list of library partners here: https://bywatersolutions.com/about-us/library-partners
What is Your Commitment to Open Source?
ByWater Solutions is unique for an organization of our size and range of services. We have a long-held commitment to open standards, open-source technologies, and the free dissemination of knowledge and information for the betterment of society through education and awareness.
What is Your Environmental and Sustainability Stance?
For ByWater Solutions, environmental practices and sustainability are very important to us and we require that all printed material be done on recycled paper. Additionally, ByWater is a virtual company, in that all of our employees work from home. This greatly reduces our carbon footprint by eliminating the emissions typically expended during a commute to work as well as eliminating the power that would be used running a central office. We also strongly encourage all of our employees to recycle waste, not only in their offices but also in their homes. All in all, ByWater is an extremely efficient, green company. Because of our remote employees, we save a large amount of energy, emissions, and waste in general.
That's enough about us. We want to hear from you! We love chatting with colleagues in the field and getting to know library staff and their communities. Please reach out with any questions or just to chat!
Give us a call: 888-900-8944
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