20016 - current

Solano County Library

RFID and Automated Materials Handling Consultation, Procurement and Implementation

This engagement built on previous work done with Solano County in 2006 and 2007.  At that time, the materials handling workflows were analyzed and numerous recommendations made.  Since that time, many of the recommendations had been implemented.  In 2016, Solano County Library contacted Lori Ayre of The Galecia Group to assist them in re-evaluated the recommendations given changing conditions. After conducting site visits, reviewing current data and working closely with the Library, a revised set of recommendations were developed and the Library began the procurement process shortly thereafter.

Ayre developed the RFP for procuring the recommended AMH and RFID technologies and is working with the Library to select a vendor.  This process includes guiding the Library through the evaluation process which includes the RFP development plus evaluation, facilitating demonstrations and faciliating scoring and final vendor selection.

2016-current

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

Automated Materials Handling and RFID Consultation

Continuing engagement with Charlotte Mecklenburg as they plan their transition from barcodes to RFID and from manual processing to automated materials handling.  They Library is in the unusual position of having to renovate one of the branches and will introduce their first automated materials handling system there. In order to plan how best to transition to RFID systemwide and how best to use automated materials handling, Lori Ayre has worked with the Library to evaluate potential vendors.  With Ayre's support, the Library has selected an AMH vendor and will roll-out a longer term plan for implementing RFID in a way that will reduce the workload for Library staff throughout the transition.  The project is ongoing.

2017-current

Stark County District Library

Materials Handling Strategy Analysis

Stark County District Library is pursuing a series of initiatives to minimize redundancy in materials handling practices and reduce the time staff spend in the back office so they can spend more time out in the library engaging with customers in a variety of ways. The Library’s strategic vision includes a dramatic reduction of materials handling activities in each branch and the elimination of service desks. Instead of working behind desks, the expectation is that staff will work with patrons side-by-side in the branches and spend more time delivering high-quality programming inside and outside of the library buildings. In order to achieve this vision, the Library is exploring a “pure central processing” strategy in which material is returned at each library location but only checked in at a central sorter. This workflow would be supported by two times daily delivery service. The expectation is that this approach would result in material check-in within a four hour window, physical delivery turnaround times of no more than 36 hours and a traditional “bookdrop” workflow for patrons. The Library seeks consulting assistance to analyze the “pure central processing” strategy and to identify critical elements of a materials handling strategy that will allow the Library to achieve their strategic vision.

2015-current

Charleston County Public Library (CCPL)

Charleston County Public Library RFID and AMH Consultation

In November of 2014, Charleston county residents passed a $108.5 million referen-dum to address the Library’s building and technological deficiencies. The Library then sought the services of an architectural/engineering firm to develop a program guide manual for the subsequent Charleston County Public Library (CCPL) Capital Improve-ment Project (CIP) that would affect all 16 outlets of the CCPL system. Lori Ayre of The Galecia Group was included in the proposal submitted by McMillan Pazdan Smith to provide guidance related to RFID, automated materials handling, and workflow optimization. 

The CIP project includes building five new library buildings as well as a new Operations Center. In addition, virtually every one of the other branches would be remodeled. The scope of the original engagement included developing guide specifications for certain building systems including security, access, A-V, RFID and product standards for other library items. 

Once the program guide had been completed, Ayre was hired by Charleston County in order to assist the County in finalizing RFID and AMH product specifications and help-  ing the staff to re-envision how service delivery could be changed with the help of self-service and materials handling technologies. Ayre also developed the scope of services that would be used to identify suitable AMH and RFID vendors.

May, 2016 - current

NC Cardinal

Environmental and Organizational Assessment and Strategic Planning Consulting

The Galecia Group has been working with NC Cardinal since May 2016.  NC Cardinal is a consortium in North Carolina which provides a shared Evergreen system for 31 library systems across the state.  The engagement includes:

  • assessing existing services and operations
  • identifying emerging needs and aspirations of shareholders, and
  • creating a 5-year strategic plan to grow the system, enhance the services, and define a sustainable funding model

This engagement is led by Lori Bowen Ayre with Galecia Associates Lucien Kress and Sam McBane Mulford.  The assessment is now complete and a final report has been submitted for the consortium's consideration.  We are still working with NC Cardinal to finalize their strategic planning document.

2015-current

California Library Association

Bookpoints - Summer Reading Program Software

The Galecia Group was hired by the California Library Association (CLA)  to support implementation of the Great Reading Adventure (GRA) summer reading program software in Summer 2015. CLA had received a grant that would allow them to offer the program to approximately 25 California libraries to use for free but they needed help with the technical aspects of doing so.  After that first year of supporting libraries on the GRA softrware,we advised CLA to rebuild the software on a non-Windows platform (Linux, Apache, PHP, Drupal). Using the GRA software as a model, we recreated the program (with some exceptions) in time to offer it to the libraries to use again the next summer.  We named the new software Bookpoints. Most of the libraries stayed with the pilot project of Bookpoints and worked with us throughout the development and testing. They used the software successfully and have been excellent development partners. Throughout this time we have been working with the Library of Virginia who also used GRA and then moved with us to Bookpoints,providing critical development funding for our development efforts.They also hosted another group of libraries on their own VA server.  

After summer 2017, we worked closely with the libraries that had used the software to identify the high priority features that they wanted us to focus upon.  We also brought in additional development resources from BitSource and DevCollaborative to supplement our Galecia team led by Jim Craner. The 2017 version is being released in April, 2017 and libraries will be going live on their customized versions starting in May, 2017.

As soon as the 2017 season of summer reading is launched we will begin working on the 2018 version.  We will continue to partner with the Library of Virginia, however, California libraries libraries have lost their grant funding and CLA will no longer be involved in the project.  The Galecia Group will continue to work with Virginia and our development partners, and hopefully most of our California libraries to host and support them in 2018 but the service will be fee-based. We will also be seeking additional support to keep the development going.

2016-2017

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

Library IT Technology Plan

Worked with library executive and IT teams as well as the County to develop a five year technology plan.  Project included surveys, interviews, and consulting related to their Library's transitioning to RFID and automated materials handling.

2015-2017

Peninsula Library System

Feasibility Analysis and Procurement for Central Automated Materials Handling for Couriers

Peninsula Library System (PLS) is a consortium of nine libraries providing. PLS hosts a shared integrated library system (Sierra) and provides delivery services to 41 locations daily. PLS asked Lori Ayre to provide a feasibility analysis for implementing an automated materials handling system to replace the manual sorting done by couriers.  

Ayre evaluated the delivery volume, materials movement patterns, courier sorting, presorting done at the libraries, delivery turnaround times, and other aspects of the operation.  She provided the PLS Council with several options for consideration including adding a smaller sorter that would operate two waves of sorting, a larger sorter for sorting all material in one wave, providing batch check-in of incoming deliveries at the libraries, and adding an additional delivery day on the weekends.

2016-2017

San Mateo Public Library

San Mateo Public Library AMH Consultation and Procurement

Worked with San Mateo Public Library to replace the existing automated materials handling system with a state-of-the-art system.  Project involved consultation related to RFID and automated materials handling configuration options and includes development of RFP, guiding the library through the procurement process and assisting with selection of a new system.

The existing system was installed in 2006 and provides convenient patron returns from numerous locations including drive-up returns, outside walk-up returns and two inside returns. The project will include evaluating options for retaining some of the conveyance and only upgrading the sorter as well as full-scale replacement of all components.  Ayre worked closely with the team to develop specifications for the new system and guided them through the procurement process.  The new system has been successfully implemented and is now up and running.

May, 2016 - 2017

PaILS

Environmental and Organizational Assessment and Strategic Planning Consulting

PaILS is a consortium in Pennsylvania which provides a shared Evergreen system for 37 library systems across the state.  The engagement included:

  • assessing existing services and operations
  • re-evaluating the PaILS Mission Statement
  • reformulating the PaILS Vision Statement
  • identifying strategic priorities
  • developing a plan to address challenges related to the need for stable funding the disparate needs of a diverse group of libraries

This work was led by Lori Bowen Ayre with Galecia Associates Lucien Kress and Sam McBane Mulford.  The final deliverables included a recommendations document which served as the basis for a Strategic Plan which the consortium adopted.  We then worked with them to develop a formal Strategic Plan used to guide the organization over the next 3-5 years.