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Williamson County Public Library
WCPLtn: Discover Learn Succeed

A Journey Through the Technical Services Department
  • TITLE Selecting Materials Materials are chosen for purchase by criteria based on reviews, staff recommendations, and patron requests.
  • TITLE Ordering Materials Materials are ordered electronically from any of several vendor websites.
  • TITLE Receiving Materials Materials are received, unpacked, and checked in at the loading dock.
  • TITLE Cataloging Materials Catalog Librarians create a bibliographic record for each title, and an item record for each copy of that title, and attach a barcode to each item.
  • TITLE Stamping Materials Each item is stamped with WCPLtn's property stamp.
  • TITLE Processing Materials Book jackets are covered with mylar sleeves; soft cover items are taped on the spine and edges to prolong their circulation life.
  • TITLE Mending Materials Worn or damaged materials are mended as many time as possible to extend their circulation life.
  • TITLE Ready for the Shelf When all processes have been completed, the new materials are delivered to Circulation, ready for patron check-out.

Did you know that over 17,000 items are added to the WCPLtn collection every year?  Each one of those 17,000 items passes through the Technical Services Department before it is ready to be placed on the shelf.

The six members of the Tech Services staff work in three teams.

The Acquisitions team is responsible for ordering, receiving, and paying for materials that have been selected by staff with expertise in each subject area, or that have been suggested by patrons.

The Cataloging team is responsible for creating a bibliographic record for each title, adding each item to the library catalog, and attaching a barcode so that the item can be circulated.

The Processing team is responsible for getting the items ready to be checked out. Hardcover books have a mylar cover installed over the book jacket, and softcover books have special book tape on the spine and the edges of the front and back covers. DVDs are placed in secure cases, and audiobooks are placed in protective sleeves and installed in durable boxes. All items have WCPLtn property stamps and security strips added.

So where’s my book? You want read the latest bestseller everyone’s talking about, and you think you’ll see if you can get it from WCPLtn. When you check the Library catalog, you might see a message that says, “1 copy ordered for Franklin (or another location),” or “1 copy being processed” or “in processing.” These three messages have three different meanings. “Ordered” means that an order for that title has been placed with the vendor, but has not yet been received. As soon as you see this message, you can put a hold on the title. “…being processed” means that the title has been received, but has not yet been cataloged. “In processing” means that the title has been received and cataloged, and is in the queue to be processed. There are many steps in an item’s journey to the shelf, and each of the 1,400 items added every month has to go through each step.

Why are there so many holds? Why can’t you just buy more copies? WCPLtn tries to identify the most popular titles and buy as many copies as possible. However, the materials budget is limited, and buying more copies of one title means there are less funds available for other titles.

How can I donate my books to the Library? WCPLtn is grateful for the many items donated by our patrons. We especially appreciate donations of bestsellers and high-demand fiction and non-fiction. These added copies reduce hold time, and make it possible for more patrons to have access to these popular titles. However, we do ask that patrons wanting to make donations read our Gift Policy. There are some kinds of materials that we are unable to accept.

How can I give a book in memory or in honor of someone? Gifts of books are an especially appropriate way to remember or to honor a booklover. We prefer monetary gifts, so that we can select titles that both fill in gaps in our collection, and fit with the interests of the honoree. When you send a check, please include the name of the person you are honoring or remembering, and the name of the donor as you want them to appear on the book plate that will be placed in each book. If you give us some suggestions about the honoree’s interests, we can select appropriate titles.

Williamson County Public Library • 1314 Columbia Avenue • Franklin TN 37064 • (615) 595-1243 ext.1 • http://wcpltn.org
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