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OCLC Annual Report 2021–2022: Break Through

President’s Welcome Accelerating change

Dear colleagues:

Have you noticed that many of the changes you expected in five years are instead happening now? Are you feeling increased pressure to deliver tomorrow’s results with today’s resources?

I am incredibly proud of what we’ve accomplished together with libraries this year. And we look forward to continuing to collaborate in meaningful ways to secure a thriving future for all libraries.

The last two years ushered in sweeping changes that challenged our routines and our resolve. We’ve witnessed digital transformation in many facets of how we live and work. We have adapted, sometimes happily and sometimes begrudgingly, to the shifts.

At OCLC, we were investing in new services, technology, and infrastructure before the COVID-19 pandemic acceleration started. That gave us a head start to step up and meet the rapidly evolving needs of libraries through critically important research, training, and new services. We have invested heavily in people, processes, and technology. Because of those investments, we were able to pivot, innovate at a faster pace than ever before, and help libraries advance when they were needed most to support communities in crisis.

This report highlights innovations and accomplishments of the past year. It celebrates the work of more than a thousand OCLC associates who worked tirelessly to deliver new and updated services. The results showcase what was a remarkable breakthrough year. Despite significant headwinds, we released new research, services, and product enhancements that are making a significant difference for libraries around the world.

A few highlights:

  • We invested heavily in the quality of WorldCat®, the global infrastructure used by tens of thousands of libraries. We enriched and improved more than 26 million records and participating libraries helped enrich a million more. Through new investments in machine learning, we eliminated 6 million duplicate records and prevented 400 million duplicate records from being added.
  • A newly designed knowledge base fast-tracked the ability of libraries to deliver e-content to their users. On average, electronic resources are now available twenty times faster.
  • We released a free, streamlined holdings update service, making library collections more discoverable.
  • We expanded our decade-long partnership with Google by adding more than 81 million library catalog links to Google Search results. We are now the largest provider of library data to Google and are working to add even more library collections to this program.
  • We completed development of the reimagined, providing libraries the opportunity to be visible where the search for information begins. The new is more user-friendly, fully mobile, and more secure, and for the first time ever, able to include electronic resources from library collections.
  • We dramatically improved resource sharing efficiency and performance. The data we collectively share in WorldCat and our network enabled libraries to reduce average turnaround time among libraries in our Express program by 50%. We introduced smart lender strings, which improved turnaround times by another 36%.
  • OCLC Research continued to guide the community with critical analysis and recommendations. The REALM project helped libraries assess the implications of COVID-19 variants, vaccines, and facilities requirements. Reimagining Descriptive Workflows sets out a community agenda to address harm caused by legacy cataloging practices in cultural institutions.
  • And we accomplished so much more, including 200 new enhancements to WorldShare® Management Services (WMS), 58 new libraries in Europe joining the OCLC Wise® public library community, and tens of thousands of librarians learning through our WebJunction® platform.

It’s always encouraging to hear how our investments and innovations impact you and your communities:

“We love [the] Express [digital delivery program]. I have received multiple emails from patrons thanking me for the ‘amazing’ fast service. Very, very pleased.”

Stacie Allison
Library Technician, Interlibrary Loan
Lebanon Valley College

“We greatly appreciate the work we do with OCLC—it’s a truly extraordinary partnership.”

Yolanda de la Iglesia Sánchez
Culture Directorate, Department of Libraries and Documentation
Instituto Cervantes

“I was researching some options, as this is our first venture into curbside, and my director brought CapiraCurbside to my attention. The service had all the features we were looking for.”

Neera Kothary
Circulation Manager
Plainsboro Public Library

“Remote access to e-resources emerged as a priority … we're satisfied that we made the right choice with EZproxy. We found it remarkably easy to get remote access up and running in a short period of time.”

Marie-Sophie Bercegeay
E-resource Department
Royal Library of Belgium

I am incredibly proud of what we’ve accomplished together with libraries this year. And we look forward to continuing to collaborate in meaningful ways to secure a thriving future for all libraries. I want to thank the many librarians who share their needs and participate in our councils, membership groups, product advisory panels, research, and numerous conferences. On behalf of all OCLC associates, we deeply appreciate your contributions and partnership. It is an honor to work with you.

Signature: Skip Prichard

Skip Prichard
OCLC President and Chief Executive Officer

Year in Review

FY22 was a year of important reflection and growth to overcome challenges, refocus efforts, and strengthen libraries around the world. Together, we made notable advancements through research, product development, and ongoing collaboration.

Illustration: Growing

We grew WorldCat, our membership, our Research Libraries Partnership, and our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Illustration: Investing

We invested in the profession by exploring new areas of librarianship, providing thousands of library staff with training and educational events, and building a new infrastructure for library-led linked data initiatives.

Illustration: Engaging

We engaged the community with surveys, focus groups, the OCLC® Community Center, and innovative services to excel in a post-pandemic world.

Growing to help libraries thrive

Expand the most comprehensive network of data about library collections

WorldCat is a remarkable achievement in global collaboration. For more than 50 years, member libraries along with OCLC metadata experts have contributed, enhanced, and improved bibliographic data to connect cultural and scholarly resources in libraries worldwide. Unique in scale and unparalleled in data quality, WorldCat makes library collections findable and accessible. It also enables libraries to share high-quality metadata and bibliographic records with each other, dramatically reducing time spent on collection development and cataloging tasks.

Logo: WorldCat

During FY22, WorldCat had:

Illustration: WorldCat searches

26 billion searches performed

Illustration: WorldCat records created

16 million new records created

Illustration: WorldCat records exported

76 million records exported

We completed the re-architecture of the WorldCat knowledge base

This multi-year project makes e-content more discoverable and immediately accessible to library users. The new ingest workflow enables us to process larger knowledge base loads at a quicker pace, getting e-content to library users 20 times faster. A strong knowledge base is the foundation for managing e-resources, including continual expansion of available e-resources and fostering new approaches to collection management. At the end of the fiscal year, the WorldCat knowledge base included 22,786 collections from 661 providers, comprising 62,463,124 records—a 19% increase in collections and a 12% increase in records from the previous year.

We launched a new streamlined holdings update service

This new service helped us improve 164 million holdings in WorldCat, adding 37 million new holdings, refreshing 94 million, and removing 38 million for items no longer held by libraries. Available at no additional charge for libraries with an OCLC cataloging subscription, the streamlined process helps libraries quickly update WorldCat holdings to ensure accurate representation of collections in OCLC services, such as FirstSearch®, WorldCat® Discovery, WorldShare® ILL, Tipasa®, and Connexion®. Up-to-date holdings also ensures people can find items in library collections on and through our partnerships with popular websites like Google, Wikipedia, and Goodreads.

We continued to improve WorldCat record quality

  • OCLC data quality staff removed 74,583 duplicate records through merging, corrected and enriched 32.5 million bibliographic records, and systematically removed 6.4 million records through machine learning.
  • The library community corrected and enriched 1.7 million records and we partnered with member libraries to remove 65,921 duplicate WorldCat bibliographic records.
  • We launched two new efforts to enhance the quality of WorldCat records: First, we updated 156 million records with new subject headings from the Université Laval’s Répertoire de vedettes-matière (RVM), Getty’s Art & Architecture Thesaurus (AAT), Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), and Medical Subject Headings (MeSH). This allows bilingual searching for resources and automated heading updates when the authority record heading changes. Secondly, we assigned OCLC control numbers to more than 3.5 million WorldCat knowledge base records—improving the discoverability and accessibility of a library's licensed electronic collections.

Give libraries an edge with smart fulfillment capabilities

More than 10,000 libraries in 56 countries used our resource sharing services in FY22, processing 4.6 million interlibrary loan requests, an increase of 7% from last year. Much of this growth was due to the implementation of our library on-demand vision, which provides new smart fulfillment functionality that gets items to library users faster and saves library staff time.

Smart fulfillment makes fast, data-driven recommendations based on a library’s local policies, item availability, network relationships, and user needs. Included with an OCLC WorldShare ILL subscription and available via ILLiad and Tipasa, this functionality provides the delivery experience users want and with remarkable speed and minimal manual intervention from staff. Among the enhancements in FY22:

  • Real-time availability for ILL significantly reduces the number of times libraries respond “No” and “In use, on loan.” In FY22, the system responded with auto “No” or “In use, on loan” nearly 200,000 times for loan requests, which resulted in significant time savings for ILL staff and patrons receiving requested items days faster.
  • Automated Request Manager enables libraries to save time by automating routine ILL workflows as well as configure smart lender strings, improving fill rates and turnaround times.

Illustration: Smart fulfillment

Illustration: OCLC Express Library badge

“Express” ILL request time cut in half

More than 1,000 libraries participated in the new Express digital delivery program that facilitates exceptionally fast ILL processing and cut the average turnaround time by 50%. During FY22, more than 455,000 copy requests were filled in an average of 10 hours among Express libraries, available at no extra cost to libraries with WorldShare ILL, Tipasa, and ILLiad. Many participating libraries regularly filled copy requests in less than one hour.

Increase participation in membership and research

Membership grew to 29,163 as the OCLC Board of Trustees and Global Council worked together to revise the definition of membership to offer more libraries the opportunity to participate in OCLC and its governance. The expanded definition now includes all ongoing subscription-based services, which greatly increases the number of libraries that can participate as members. Because of this new definition, institutions qualifying for membership in the Americas increased 133%. Membership in Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) increased 8%, and Asia Pacific (AP) increased by 85%.

Chart: FY22 membership growth

Illustration: New Research Library Partnership universities

We grew the OCLC Research Library Partnership (RLP) to 125 partners, adding six new libraries: Colorado State University, the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), OCAD University, the University of Buffalo, the University of Rhode Island, and Vassar College. The RLP offers extensive professional development opportunities for library staff, delivered in a combination of formats ranging from small group discussions and webinars to working groups and in-person events.

Advance our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion

We published Reimagine Descriptive Workflows: A Community-informed Agenda for Reparative and Inclusive Descriptive Practice. The report, which was downloaded more than 1,400 times, synthesized findings from the Reimagine Descriptive Workflows project, related research, and ongoing operational work for improving descriptive practices, tools, infrastructure, and workflows in libraries and archives. It contextualizes the challenges facing the library and information field in inclusive and reparative metadata work and offers a framework of guidance with actions to help institutions with prioritization and change.

Illustration: Cover of Reimagine Descriptive Workflows report

Illustration: Digital Collection Stewardship

In partnership with Washington State University’s Center for Digital Scholarship and Curation, we are creating a series of free, online courses for staff at tribal archives, libraries, museums, and small public libraries on digital stewardship and community-centered curation of digital collections. The first of these on-demand courses, adapted from the Tribal Digital Stewardship Cohort Program developed at Washington State University, were introduced in FY22 and 225 learners enrolled in them. These courses will help users create digital collections to raise the visibility of the richness and diversity of these cultures.

After a pause due to COVID-19, we restarted the Distinguished Seminar Series. Our featured speaker was Sandra M. Phoenix, Executive Director, Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Library Alliance. In her presentation, Strategies to preserve the past and shape our collective future: The HBCU Library Alliance—A Sankofa Experience, she described the organization’s Sankofa Experience in remembering and embracing the past to make positive progress in the future.

Illustration: Screenshot from Distinguished Seminar Series webinar

We continued to build diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) courses in the WebJunction® course catalog. More than 3,000 people enrolled in the 22 courses. And 2,789 learners attended one of the 13 live DEI webinars that WebJunction offered during FY22. Two of the most popular webinars were On Implicit Bias and Communication and Promote Community Engagement and Challenge Prejudice with a Human Library.

We eliminated master record terminology in the latest version of Connexion client and changed the references and names of procedures around master record in product documentation, marketing collateral, and public web pages. “WorldCat record” is replacing “master record.” In CONTENTdm®, we replaced “master file” with “digital original” and “master set” with “base set.” We are actively auditing other systems and terminology to ensure appropriate descriptions are reflected.

Investing to move the profession forward

Explore new areas of librarianship with research

As library staff and leaders navigated unknown, fast-paced change over the past few years, OCLC Research synthesized emerging insights to produce research, resources, tools, and infrastructure to support recovery and planning for the future. In FY22, we issued the following reports:

New Model Library: Pandemic Effects and Library Directions, which shares how leaders adapted during the pandemic and what they envision moving forward to help libraries plan strategically. We also published a supplemental learner guide that library leaders and staff can use to guide discussion and engagement to help with their institution’s planning. These two documents were downloaded more than 2,500 times.

Research Information Management in the United States, a two-part report series that provided a first-of-its-kind documentation of research information management (RIM) practices at US research universities. The report presented a thorough examination of RIM practices, goals, stakeholders, and system components.

Illustration: OCLC Research report covers

The REALM project distributed science-based information and research relevant to libraries, archives, and museums on the transmission of the COVID-19 virus and convened practitioners in a series of online forums.

Illustration: REALM project

  • The results of the two-year project were published in the Journal of Applied Microbiology.
  • We hosted three online forums to foster discussion, knowledge sharing, and mutual support among those who work in and with libraries, archives, and museums. The conversations elicited examples, perspectives, and ideas that can inform future initiatives and projects to bolster capacity and resilience of cultural heritage institutions.
  • We published nine research briefings, prepared by researchers at Battelle, to support local decision-making. These briefings included timely information about the latest research on COVID-19 vaccines, SARS-CoV-2 variants, and ventilation.

Engage thousands of library staff in education and training

WebJunction’s course catalog, including 52 on-demand courses and 328 webinar recordings, continued to provide excellent free continuing education opportunities for library staff to engage in professional development. Enrollment remained strong, continuing to outpace the pre-pandemic numbers with thousands of hours of professional development for library staff. FY22 saw 25,211 learners take part in WebJunction courses, a 15% increase from FY19, the year before the pandemic.

Illustration: WebJunction course catalog

Move to the future with linked data

Illustration: WorldCat Entities website

We completed a project, funded in part by a grant from the Mellon Foundation, to develop a shared entity management infrastructure that supports linked data initiatives in the library community. As a result, we released more than 150 million WorldCat Entities containing descriptions of creative works and persons on a freely available look-up site at We’re now partnering with key libraries to help us refine and enhance an entities management tool—OCLC Meridian—and APIs. That will give libraries what they need to fully incorporate linked data into their workflows, empowering discovery through connections that answer questions researchers haven’t yet thought to ask.

Increase access to worldwide library collections

We partnered with hundreds of libraries to build the new, the only site where anyone can explore billions of items from a global network of thousands of library locations in a single search. The redesigned features an improved user experience, increases the impact of libraries on the web, and provides more ways to connect with people in the community and beyond, including those who begin their searches on search engines and non-library websites, such as Google, Wikipedia, and Goodreads. is central to our web visibility program, giving libraries the opportunity to be visible where the search for information begins.

Illustration: home page

The new

Illustration: Mobile-friendly design

Reaches more people with a mobile-friendly design and a more accessible user experience

Illustration: Connects more people to libraries

Connects more people to libraries with tools that promote your collections

Illustration: Engagement opportunities such as list sharing

Provides more opportunities for engagement, including easier list creation and sharing

Illustration: Access to e-resources

Improves fulfillment with access to local library e-resources

Deepen member connections with Global Council

OCLC Global Council continued its ongoing transformation in FY22 to build international representation and strengthen members’ ability to reflect local and regional views on important issues.

2021–2022 Board of Trustees

As a nonprofit organization, OCLC is governed by a 15‐member Board of Trustees, more than half of whom are librarians. Six members of the board are chosen by OCLC’s 48‐member Global Council.

Photo: 2021–2022 OCLC Board of Trustees

Front row L–R: Cindy Hilsheimer, Vice Chair, OCLC Board of Trustees and Managing Principal, BeecherHill; Janet Walls, President, Delta Blvd; John F. Szabo, Chair, OCLC Board of Trustees and City Librarian, Los Angeles Public Library; Skip Prichard, President and Chief Executive Officer, OCLC; Kathleen Keane, Director (retired), Johns Hopkins University Press; Barbara Lison, Director, Bremen Public Library.

Back row L–R: Craig Anderson, University Librarian (retired), Deakin University; Sarah E. Thomas, Vice President for the Harvard Library (retired), Harvard University; Bernadette Gray-Little, Chancellor Emerita, University of Kansas; Debbie Schachter, Director of Library Services and Learning Commons, Langara College; Theresa S. Byrd, Dean of the University Library, University of San Diego; Anja Smit, Director of DANS (Dutch national centre of expertise and repository for research data); Ginny Steel, Norman and Armena Powell University Librarian, University of California, Los Angeles; Brady J. Deaton, Chancellor Emeritus, University of Missouri.

Inset: Shirley Chiu-wing Wong, University Librarian, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Photo: Shirley Chiu-wing Wong

Photo: John Szabo

A message from John Szabo, OCLC Board Chair
City Librarian, Los Angeles Public Library

I’ve never been prouder to represent OCLC as its Board Chair. OCLC is an organization made up of passionate people, all who care deeply about libraries. And like libraries, they want their work to matter, to have impact. This past year was one of accelerated solutions and energizing collaboration—efforts that help all libraries change lives and tell powerful stories. The board is grateful to Skip, the executive leadership team, and the entire OCLC staff for a year of extraordinary growth, learning, and advocacy.

OCLC Global Council leadership

Following the 2021 elections for OCLC Global and Regional Council delegates, 23 individuals began three-year terms as delegates on November 1, 2021. New leadership for each of the Regional Councils also began on November 1.

Member institutions have a voice through elected representatives and are encouraged to actively participate in elections and direct dialogue with their delegates. Regional Councils facilitate connections in three regions: Europe, the Middle East, and Africa; Asia Pacific; and the Americas. Member libraries from each region elect delegates to serve on the OCLC Global Council, which brings worldwide viewpoints together, informing and guiding us through their unique perspectives.

The Global Council Executive Committee for 2021–2022:

  • Earl Givens Jr.
    Library Director, Catawba College (North Carolina, USA)
    Global Council Chair & ARC Chair
  • Evi Tramantza
    Director of Libraries and Archives, Anatolia College (Greece)
    Global Council Vice Chair & EMEA Vice Chair/Chair-Elect
  • Hong Yao
    Technical Services Director, Queens Public Library (New York, USA)
    ARC Vice Chair/Chair-Elect
  • Sarah Hurter-Savie
    Library Director, Nice Sophia Antipolis University (France)
    EMEA Chair
  • Constance Wiebrands
    University Librarian, Edith Cowan University (Australia)
    APRC Chair
  • Muh-Chyun Tang
    Associate University Librarian, National Taiwan University (Taiwan)
    APRC Vice Chair/Chair-Elect

Annual meeting

Debbie Schachter, Director of Library Services and Learning Commons, Langara College, and Janet Walls, President of Delta Blvd, a leadership consulting and executive coaching organization, took their seats on the OCLC Board of Trustees during the board’s regular November 2021 meeting. The two new board members replaced two retiring members. There are nine librarians from five countries serving on the 15-member OCLC Board of Trustees. Debbie was elected to the board by OCLC Global Council in March 2021.

OCLC Global Council elected Pilar Martinez, Chief Executive Officer, Edmonton Public Library, and Sarah E. Thomas, Vice President for the Harvard Library (retired), Harvard University, to the OCLC Board of Trustees in March of 2022. They took their seats on the Board in November 2022.

Contributions in thought leadership

OCLC Global Council published the findings from the 2021 survey on Libraries and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Partnering with OCLC Research, OCLC Global Council selected Libraries and Open Ecosystems as its focus area for 2021–2022 to explore the broader impact of the library in its local ecosystem—in other words, the library’s symbiotic relationship with the social, educational, informational, and environmental infrastructure of the community where it is located.

OCLC Global Council hosted a series of webinars to explore how libraries can and do contribute to open ecosystems and bring impactful change to the local communities. More than 2,300 registrations were received for the webinars with more than 980 individuals attending the live sessions.

Illustration:  OCLC Global Council Libraries and Open Ecosystems webinars

Engaging libraries to deliver fulfilling experiences

More opportunities for engagement through activities and forums

The OCLC Community Center had another year of impressive growth. In FY22, the Community Center grew to more than 38,000 participants from nearly 8,800 institutions. There was an average of 220 new postings a month and staff managed a 22% increase in community- and OCLC-led online sessions on topics relating to a wide range of products. These online events, which included RSC22, WMS Connect, CONTENTdm Connect, and DevConnect22, generated more than 23,000 registrations and more than 13,000 live attendees. Community members led 32 of these online sessions and shared best practices. Two additional Community Center developments:

Illustration: OCLC Community Center

  • More than 200 enhancements were added to WMS—more than 70% of which were based on community input. The more noteworthy enhancements are improvements to incoming MARC record matching and EDIFACT invoice imports; ability to limit hold requests to materials not available, which can reduce staff workload and improve turnaround time; new financial systems integrations; a new Harvest Overview dashboard to review the completeness of vendor usage data as well as the ability to filter by local licenses; the ability to create a staff audit trail; and shelf reading through the Digby app.
  • To help foster engagement among library developers and public libraries, we launched three new community spaces—OCLC APIs, Capira®, and Wise. These new communities provide a virtual space for discussion, learning, and accessing recordings and other information of interest to library staff.

To develop a more complete picture of the users and creators of archival descriptions and their research needs, the OCLC Research team used focus group interviews, semi-structured interviews, and a pop-up survey.

  • 52 archivists participated in focus group interviews
  • 3,000 users of 12 archival aggregation sites responded to the survey
  • 25 users from the survey have been invited to participate in follow-up interviews

Bibliometrics and research impact (BRI) is an emerging area of interest for research libraries and their parent institutions. The RLP conducted a high-level survey of partner institutions to learn more about library BRI activities and interests. This information will support follow-on conversations.

More than 600 librarians responded to a survey to measure satisfaction with OCLC Cataloging and Metadata Services. We learned that nearly nine out of ten customers are satisfied with the services and would recommend us to colleagues. And the vast majority are satisfied with the quality of WorldCat MARC records and agree that the value of their OCLC Cataloging and Metadata Subscription is worth the price.

We conducted a satisfaction study among EZproxy® customers. More than eight out of ten customers are satisfied with their self-hosted EZproxy and even more are satisfied with hosted EZproxy, which saves libraries an average of about three weeks’ worth of IT maintenance work annually.

Capira customers were given an opportunity to share their experiences through a satisfaction study. We learned that eight out of ten CapiraMobile® and nearly nine out of ten CapiraCurbside® subscribers are satisfied with the respective services.

Connect web searchers to library collections through Google Search

Through a new program with Google, records of print books discovered through Google Search now link directly to library catalogs using WorldCat data. The program improves the visibility of library collections on the open web and will expand to more libraries and connect to more library resources in the future. We are the largest provider of library data to Google and have worked with them for more than 13 years to increase access to information in libraries on the web. The initial phase of the new program gives access to 5.5 million books and 12 million editions from 565 member libraries.

Illustration: Google library links

New features for a growing WMS community

More than 750 libraries in 27 countries have now selected WorldShare Management Services (WMS), the world’s first cloud-based library services platform. New subscribers to WMS include:

Logo: WorldShare Management Services

United States
Pace University and Pace University Law Library
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
University of Sioux Falls
St. John’s University
US Army Corps of Engineers

Providence University
Crandall University

Latin America
National Library of Barbados

Asia Pacific region
Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (Central Bank of the Philippines)
Chaoyang University of Technology

Bournemouth University
Newman University
University of Southampton
University of Suffolk
University of Milano-Bicocca

Illustration: Appalachian College Association

Twenty-seven libraries that are part of the Appalachian College Association selected WMS to meet current and future needs of the consortium by bringing together libraries spanning five states to collaborate and share resources. Heather Tompkins, Director of Library Programs, said WMS was the top choice because it includes everything needed to manage the library, content vendor neutrality, and OCLC’s reputation in the library community. This five-year contract is OCLC’s largest WMS contract to date.

Photo courtesy Appalachian College Association

Illustration: Griffith University

Griffith University in Australia extended its partnership with OCLC by selecting WMS as its new library management system. Maureen Sullivan, University Librarian, said that Griffith is a values-driven organization and shares our desire to advance DEI initiatives and to promote engagement with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. She also said that WMS will integrate workflows and increase visibility and access to resources for students and faculty.

Photo courtesy Griffith University

Illustration: Complutense University

Complutense University of Madrid, one of the oldest universities in the world and among the top universities in Spain, extended its partnership with a five-year contract renewal of WMS.

Photo courtesy Complutense University

Illustration: US StateRAMP

WMS achieved US StateRAMP ‘Ready’ authorization, the first in the library industry to do so, following a thorough evaluation to meet security requirements for cloud services at state and local levels of government.

Illustration: Talis Aspire

We partnered with Talis to offer Talis Aspire, a market-leading course resource list management system, to new and existing WMS customers. As a result of this new partnership, we now offer Talis Aspire to WMS customers throughout the US, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Australia, and New Zealand. Rich interoperability between the two services helps institutions better manage the acquisition, use, and retention of materials within the context of in-person and online learning environments.

Illustration: ALA Core

We announced a new partnership with ALA Core, the newest division of the American Library Association. This exclusive partnership provides free access to the WMS sandbox, allowing ALA Core members to work hands-on with WMS. Lindsay Cronk, ALA Core’s 2021–2022 president, said the partnership will help address barriers to access and training on library systems, especially for early career library workers.

Continue focus on OCLC Wise and CapiraMobile for public libraries, our community engagement products

We continue to work closely with our Wise early adopters in the US to add new features and functionality to enhance workflows for staff and the user experience for library customers. Bucks County Free Library, in Pennsylvania, went live with Wise in FY22.

To improve the online experience for its users, Roanoke Valley Libraries, in Virginia, which includes libraries in Botetourt County, City of Roanoke, City of Salem, and County of Roanoke, signed on to implement both Wise and CapiraMobile.

Illustration: Roanoke Valley Libraries

Photo courtesy Roanoke Valley Libraries

Illustration: Cultuurconnect

Photo courtesy Cultuurconnect

We continued to expand Wise in Europe, as 58 libraries that are part of Cultuurconnect in Flanders, Belgium, went live. Currently, 268 Flanders public libraries and their users are now enjoying the benefits of Wise as their unified library system. In FY23, another 39 public libraries in Flanders will join the OCLC Wise family.

The Flanders Wise system is our largest Wise implementation. The 315 libraries serve 6.8 million Flemish citizens with more than 28 million combined library holdings. We also have ten innovation projects in the works with Cultuurconnect related to functionality, technology, and processes.

We welcomed 88 new additions to the Capira family in FY22. Additionally, our entire suite of Capira library services were recognized with LibraryWorks 2022 Modern Library Awards.

Advance groundbreaking work in building, managing, and curating the collective collection

The number of shared print commitments registered in WorldCat grew to more than 25 million. This demonstrates the strength in our partnership with the shared print community.

Illustration: GreenGlass

GreenGlass for Serials added support for print to e-serials comparisons, allowing libraries to deduplicate print serial runs using information about their electronic holdings.

Use of GreenGlass® continued to expand globally. More than 560 projects having been conducted to date by individual libraries and groups to inform a variety of print collection management decisions. New customers include University of Minnesota (US), Senate House Library (UK), and the Federal Science Libraries Network (Canada).

Broaden access to worldwide library collections

The customer base of hosted EZproxy grew approximately 37% in FY22. In EMEA and APAC, there were more than 300 libraries that either migrated to or subscribed for the first time to hosted EZproxy.

At the end of FY22, 85 libraries around the world were using EZproxy Analytics. In APAC, six institutions successfully implemented Analytics—Keio University, Waseda University, Temasek Polytechnic, University of Philippines Diliman College of Engineering, Asia Pacific University of Technology & Innovation, and Singapore Management University. These customers use EZproxy Analytics to gain a deeper understanding of who’s interacting with their services; justify e-resource investments; and inform decisions about renewals, cancellations, and acquisitions.

Illustration: EZproxy Analytics

Illustration: New open access providers

We added more open access collections from 15 providers, including four new organizations—Europeana, Open Library of the Humanities, UCL Press, and Wolters Kluwer—to the Open Access Content database on FirstSearch. Searches of the Open Access Content database retrieve only open access items, saving time for searchers who wish to focus their research on resources from open access sources. “Access” links in FirstSearch records connect users to full-text open content. The Open Access Content database expands on OCLC’s 20-year history of partnering with the world’s leading content providers to represent high-quality open content in WorldCat and OCLC services.

We signed agreements with publishers to ensure better discovery and more complete access to materials library users need. We added 43 new collections from 17 content providers (seven new providers) to the WorldCat Discovery central index to ensure discovery of their content through WorldCat Discovery. At the end of FY22, OCLC had agreements with 384 publishers and information providers to include metadata for 3,150 collections of books, e-books, journals, databases, and other materials from these global publishers to the central index, representing more than 4.7 billion records.

Illustration: New publishers

Searching in WorldCat Discovery increased 39% in FY22, with users averaging 424 million searches per month. It enables users to identify and obtain resources in a wide variety of formats and collections, and innovative search tools provide results without bias toward any content providers. New features and functionality added in FY22 include:

  • Release of a redesigned, WCAG 2.1-compliant WorldCat Discovery interface that delivers an enriched user experience for all searchers, reflecting input from the WorldCat Discovery community

Illustration: WorldCat Discovery

  • The ability for searchers to view, save, rerun, share, or delete recent searches in their personal search history
  • New search history configuration options that include custom text for the “Save” search action, and the ability to view search history for current session and automatically add most recent searches to “My Account” on sign-in
  • A “Best access options” panel that uses libraries’ fulfillment inputs to show the most convenient electronic and physical fulfillment choices to users, so they can obtain needed items as quickly as possible
  • An Arabic interface display option
  • A 45% improvement in the user interface response time

FY22 Financials

As a library services provider, OCLC is unique. We are a worldwide, nonprofit organization that reinvests all of our income into library research, programs, and product development. Our goal is to meet the technology needs and service requirements identified by our membership.

Ensuring the future

Revenues from library services increased a modest $1.7 million in FY22. The growth in revenues was primarily due to new subscriptions to WorldShare Management Services and OCLC Wise, particularly the Cultuurconnect implementation in Belgium. We also had strong sales in our GreenGlass and EZproxy services, which helped revenues reach $219.5 million.

Net contribution for FY22 was $(19.0) million compared to $55.5 million in FY21. Operating results before portfolio activity was $10.7 million compared to $4.6 million in FY21 and was a result of lower salaries and consulting activity, along with other cost control measures that were implemented in FY21. The decrease in the investment portfolio is attributable to the overall stock market sell-off but still reflected a balance of $227.2 million on June 30, 2022.

Overall, revenue from library services and income from our investment portfolio provided a stable cash flow to fund operations, improve services, and make strategic capital investments during a time of economic challenge.

Summary of consolidated activities

Amount in $ millions

FY22 FY21
Operating activities Library services revenue $219.5 $217.8
Operating results before portfolio activity $10.7 $4.6
Investing activities Investment portfolio activity
Dividends and investment income $9.6 $9.7
Net gains/(losses) $3.4 $1.6
Net unrealized gain/(loss) on investments ($42.7) $39.6
Net contribution ($19.0) $55.5

The OCLC investment portfolio

Our investment portfolio was valued at $227.2 million at the end of FY22, a decrease in value of $57.7 million that’s in line with the broader market performance this last year. The portfolio generates a stable flow of dividend and interest income that is withdrawn annually to fund cash needs.

At the end of FY22, OCLC’s outstanding debt was $60.0 million compared to $78.7 million in FY21.

Investment portfolio and debt

Amount in $ millions end of fiscal year

Chart: OCLC FY22 investment portfolio and debt

Research and development

We regularly engage with our membership through Regional and Global Council meetings as well as specific product groups, advisory committees, and research projects to identify trends that are shaping the library profession. Based on these conversations, we continue to invest in a variety of specific initiatives that our members have told us are critical to their success.

FY22 research and development investments

Total $39.6 million

Chart: OCLC FY22 research and development expenditures

Investment categories include:

Metadata services (14%)

OCLC Cataloging and Metadata Subscription, WorldShare Metadata Services, CONTENTdm, Contract Cataloging, Dewey® Services, CBS Services

Delivery services (25%)

Tipasa, GreenGlass, Relais® D2D, WorldShare Interlibrary Loan, VDX®, WorldCat Navigator® WorldCat® Discovery,, PiCarta®

Management services (33%)

WorldShare Management Services, WorldShare License Manager, WorldShare Collection Evaluation, WorldShare Report Designer, EZproxy, SISIS‐SunRise, LBS, Amlib®, BIBLIOTHECAplus, OCLC Wise, OLIB®

Data services (6%)

WorldCat, WorldCat knowledge base, WorldCat Discovery central index

WorldShare Platform (3%)

The infrastructure that supports cloud services

OCLC Research (17%)

Research initiatives

Systems/corporate initiatives (2%)

Data centers, technical infrastructure

For additional information, please view the following resources:

The Audit Committee, consisting entirely of independent trustees, assists the Board of Trustees in its oversight of our financial reporting process and is responsible for, among other things, reviewing with BDO USA LLP, independent auditors, the scope and results of its audit engagement.

Break through

Thank you for your ongoing commitment to the OCLC community. Together, we will continue to make breakthroughs possible with the power of collaboration and innovation for the benefit of all libraries.