New OCLC Wise: Designed around people, driven by data

DUBLIN, Ohio, 19 March 2018—OCLC introduces Wise, the first community engagement system for U.S. public libraries. A proven solution used by more than 75 percent of public libraries in the Netherlands, Wise is engineered to elevate library experiences, the experiences of the people who use the library and the dedicated staff who engage with the community.

Uniquely holistic in its design, Wise integrates tools for increasing community engagement with the functions of library management. A marketing component simplifies the creation and distribution of more personalized and targeted communications—helping improve current customer relationships and build new connections with the wider community. Getting the right message to the right person is as easy as dragging and dropping data components.

"Public library leaders are passionate about meeting the needs of their communities," said Skip Prichard, OCLC President and CEO. "Wise is a system that helps staff accelerate change and opens up new possibilities. Wise is a game changer because it is designed around people—how people use the library, what people want, and how they prefer to receive information."

Fueled by customer behavioral data, Wise also delivers meaningful insights about how to best evolve library collections to reflect the needs and preferences of the community. This collection management approach combines internal expertise with evidence-based advice about what to keep, buy, move, weed—down to the shelf level and in real time.

"Wise provides the tools libraries can use to evolve with the community," said Mary Sauer-Games, OCLC Vice President, Global Product Management. "We're excited about partnering with public library leaders who are looking for ways to make transformational changes in their organizations and their communities."

Acquired by OCLC in 2013, Wise is a highly-customizable and proven service that is currently used by more than 75 percent of public libraries in the Netherlands. The service is being thoughtfully tailored to address the specific needs of U.S. public libraries. As part of a comprehensive approach, OCLC conducted multiple advisory sessions with U.S. public library leaders and spent time in the field for in-depth discussions and observation. OCLC staff also partnered with Allen County Public Library (ACPL) in Fort Wayne, Indiana, for evaluative product testing.

"It has been really exciting for us as an organization to partner with OCLC on this. We hadn't necessarily looked at or thought about an ILS from a customer-centric perspective," said ACPL Director Greta Southard. "We've viewed it as a tool to help us manage the collection and circulation, but not as a tool that might also help us connect with our customers in new ways. So, it was a great opportunity for my staff to stretch themselves, and to think differently, and to share that information with each other."

Wise will be available in the United States later this year. Learn more about Wise at the Public Library Association 2018 Conference in Philadelphia, March 20-24. Attend the OCLC Update Lunch or join us at the OCLC booth (#1001) for special presentations and the opportunity to speak with our Wise experts.

More about OCLC Wise is on the website at oc.lc/wise.

About OCLC

OCLC is a nonprofit global library cooperative providing shared technology services, original research and community programs so that libraries can better fuel learning, research and innovation. Through OCLC, member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the most comprehensive global network of data about library collections and services. Libraries gain efficiencies through OCLC's WorldShare, a complete set of library management applications and services built on an open, cloud-based platform. It is through collaboration and sharing of the world’s collected knowledge that libraries can help people find answers they need to solve problems. Together as OCLC, member libraries, staff and partners make breakthroughs possible.

OCLC, OCLC Wise, WorldCat, WorldCat.org and WorldShare are trademarks and/or service marks of OCLC, Inc. Third-party product, service and business names are trademarks and/or service marks of their respective owners.


  • Bob Murphy

    Manager, Media Relations

    O: +1-614-761-5136

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