What Do Libraries Get For Their WALS Fees?

What does your library get for their WALS fees?

By Karla Smith, updated 2022

Winnefox Library System provides many services for its member libraries. Of those services, the following are paid for with WALS fees:   

  • Library-specific, shared automation services (aka “ILS”).  These include:
    • Hardware and ongoing software costs to SirsiDynix and other vendors for primary library software (SirsiDynix Symphony, Syndetics Unbound content enhancement, Shoutbomb SMS notices, OCLC for catalog records, data modifications to enhance Google results with library holdings). 
    • Contract with Oshkosh PL Tech Services to maintain the database so records are correct and people can easily find what they are looking for. 
    • Shared catalog for patrons to find and obtain materials at all other 29 WALS libraries.
    • Notifications to patrons that their holds are in and items will soon be due (or overdue)
    • Mobile App for patrons to search our database and manage their accounts.
  • Network: 
    • Internet access and equipment.  
    • WiscNet & Charter costs for telecommunication infrastructure and youribrary.org identity.
    • Wireless access in every library.
    • File sharing, storage and backup.
    • Remote access software for library support
    • Security software, insurance, and services to protect your library’s data.
  • People: 
    • Salaries for 2 FTE automation librarians. They maintain and keep the ILS functioning properly. They setup new products, change settings, provide statistics and maintenance reports for each member library. 
    • A portion of Winnefox IT staff salaries.  They maintain and keep your libraries’ PCs and network equipment functioning properly.
    • Mileage for when any of them need to go to a library for on-site support. 
  • Training
    • For you and other library directors and staff to keep skills current on the ILS
    • For WALS staff to be able to better support the libraries with current technology
    • Documentation for ILS procedures and best practices
  • Capital reserve fund: 
    • Every year we put money aside so when we need to replace something we’ve got the money for it.  For example, the router in your library costs somewhere around $1,200 - $1,500.  If lightning takes it out tonight we’ll have a new one on the way tomorrow with no bill.