Fairfax County Public Library Prepares to Launch a New and Improved System
Launch Date: November 13
A new library catalog will provide:
- Friendlier, smarter searching,
- Direct download of eBooks and eAudiobooks from OverDrive, RBDigital, etc.,
- Optional user-created logon (instead of library card number),
- User-curated lists for favorite authors, genres and titles,
- Auto-renewals of physical materials,
- Text notification (in addition to email notification).
The Library’s Brain
The Integrated Library System (ILS) or simply "catalog" is the hub of everything we do—the library’s brain, essentially. It tracks more than 400,000 cardholders and 2.3 million items, including books, DVDs, thermal cameras, book club kits, audiobooks, digital resources, nature backpacks and more. It routes 1.2 million holds per year to the right library, emails holds notices, makes phone calls to those without email and allows you to renew your books on the phone. It’s a real workhorse, but there are a few things it can’t do. That’s where our new system comes in.
Our new library catalog, scheduled to launch late this fall, will include several features we think will make library customers happy. This system will integrate both physical items and electronic items, so you can search for books, eBooks and eAudiobooks all in the same place. You will also be able to see all your checked-out items in one customer account screen.
The new system will improve user access and communication, too—starting with an updated, friendly design. You can sign up to receive text messages in addition to emails or phone calls, and you will be able to choose a user ID rather than logging in with your library card number. Additionally, users can opt to receive library notifications in Spanish or Korean, and access to a Wish List means you can save books now to read later. It’s going to be a significant upgrade, and we think you’re really going to like it.
Prepare for the Transition
While we move to the new library catalog, some service interruptions will take place—but they will be short-lived and publicized in advance. During these service interruptions, no fees will be charged and due dates will be automatically extended.
Stay tuned to this page for updates.
For most people, your password will not change. A few customers (fewer than 200 or so out of 400,000) will need to change their passwords.
Things will start to change around Monday, October 28, when our current library catalog will no longer let you place holds. By Wednesday, November 13, we should be up and running on the new system. Checking out materials via Overdrive and RBdigital will not change until November 13.
Yes. Your barcode, or library card number will continue to work. You will have the option of creating a username that might be easier to manage than a card number.
- If there are no holds on your materials, they will renew twice without you doing anything.
- You will receive an email letting you know the due date has changed.
- After that second renewal, or after nine weeks with those items, the materials must be returned.
Yes, we anticipate all of our patron hold requests will transfer and still be filled. (There will be a slight pause at the end of October and early in November during our software transition but then we hope to be back in business by mid-November.)
Yes, your reading history will continue in the new software system.