Case Studies

Salina Public Library: Part of the Community - A Case Study

Library Location: Salina, Kansas

Library Information: Salina Public Library serves Saline County, Kan., pop. 54,000, by providing access to information, learning, and culture. The library is a community space that provides free internet access, computers, gaming, meeting rooms, events, and programs. It features a diverse and expansive collection of materials for patrons to borrow.

Library URL:

Discovery URL:

Library Background

The Salina Public Library offers opportunities for all ages to learn, gather and grow by providing resources, events, technology, and information. Library staff members provide pleasant and efficient service to meet the needs of each patron.

As a tax-supported institution, all activities of the Library are directed toward providing the best possible service to the public. The Library is an important part of the educational, recreational, and social services of the community and strives to work with other agencies and organizations to meet the needs of the people in these areas.

A case study with Melanie Hedgespeth, Library Director, Amy Adams, Assistant Director, and Eric Swenson, Head of Technology.

Bywater staff are exceptional. Training, collaborating, and troubleshooting with them has been a breeze. They do a wonderful job of making you feel a part of a community.

Eric Swenson, Head of Technology

Case Study

When did you make the decision to switch to Open Source?

SPL has used Koha for many years and values the flexibility and affordability of an open-source ILS.

Why did you decide to move to Koha ILS?

Though Koha is not unfamiliar to us, we had been working with a different support provider. We made the move to ByWater for their superior system management and responsive customer service.

How have the cost-savings helped your library?

This a budget-neutral move for us. Moving to a more collaborative community of developers has benefits beyond budgetary and it saves staff time.

How has this provided new ways of working for staff?

Overall, ByWater has improved and simplified our workflows freeing up staff time and reducing errors. A few examples are ILL service is more accurate because of the availability of status fields. For reports, we now have access to a community catalog of reports that gives us a better starting point. Our cataloging workflow overall has become more efficient.

What challenge(s) was your library addressing by adding a discovery layer?

Our previous Koha interface was not visually appealing and was hard to navigate. Combining digital and physical records for like titles is a huge benefit and the collection promotion features, such as book lists that use cover art and read-alike recommendations, better demonstrate all that we have to offer. Additionally, patrons now have a greater ability to manage their accounts with clear information on their checkouts, the option to pay fines online, and the ability to update their information.

What integrations have you tied into Aspen Discovery?

We have integrated Hoopla, Overdrive, Flipster, Library Calendar, Creative Bug, Niche Academy, and our databases.

Lessons learned from the migration?

Our three big lessons are

1. No matter how many times you go over plans, something always slips through. Be prepared for the unexpected to pop up.

2. You can never talk about item types too much.

3. It’s worth doing.

For More Information

Jessica Zairo
Director of Library Sales & Outreach
ByWater Solutions

Read more by Jessie Zairo

Tags Kansas