An Integrated Library System (ILS) gives you access to and manages the resources in your library. It helps users find resources for reading, teaching and learning, as well as managing cataloguing, borrowing and other functions.​

What an ILS does

An ILS usually manages:

  • cataloguing
  • borrowing and returning of books and other resources
  • reports and statistics on the use of the library collection
  • integrated access to e-journals, eBooks, databases, websites and print resources.

An ILS also includes an Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC). This is an online database of your library resources which you can use to locate and promote resources and services in the library. Ideally, the school community has access to the OPAC from the homepage of your school's website and/or Learning Management System (LMS).

Your ILS is usually part of your school’s online learning environment along with your ICT infrastructure and LMS, such as Moodle.

Selecting an ILS for your school

The system you select needs to meet your users’ needs and provide fast, efficient and user friendly access to information. This includes appropriately managed access to physical, multimedia and online resources.

Questions to ask your ILS vendor or supplier

When you talk to ILS suppliers, ask for the following information.

  • What the ILS can do

    Ask questions about the functionality that the ILS offers.

    • Does the system include modules for cataloguing, circulation, reporting and an Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) for students to search?
    • Does the system include Z39.50 information retrieval standard and Machine-Readable Cataloguing (MARC) data compliance?
    • What report functions does the system offer?
    • Is there a web-based interface that includes library homepage integration, multimedia and web resource access and management and offsite access for students?

    It's a good idea to involve your school's ICT provider in discussions with the vendor about the system specifications and capabilities.

  • What the ILS can do

    Ask questions about the functionality that the ILS offers.

    • Does the system include modules for cataloguing, circulation, reporting and an Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) for students to search?
    • Does the system include Z39.50 information retrieval standard and Machine-Readable Cataloguing (MARC) data compliance?
    • What report functions does the system offer?
    • Is there a web-based interface that includes library homepage integration, multimedia and web resource access and management and offsite access for students?

    It's a good idea to involve your school's ICT provider in discussions with the vendor about the system specifications and capabilities.

  • How the ILS works with other systems

    Your ILS will be more effective if it works well with other systems, including the other systems your school uses.

    • How does the system work with catalogue record services including our Record Manager and Australia's Schools Catalogue Information Service (SCIS)?
    • Will the system work with with your school’s Student Management System (SMS) and Learning Management System? For example, it should be possible to transfer borrower records easily between your SMS and ILS.
    • How well does the system work with the Student Management System? For example, will it be easy to transfer borrower records?

    Cataloguing service for schools

    SCIS

  • How the ILS works with other systems

    Your ILS will be more effective if it works well with other systems, including the other systems your school uses.

    • How does the system work with catalogue record services including our Record Manager and Australia's Schools Catalogue Information Service (SCIS)?
    • Will the system work with with your school’s Student Management System (SMS) and Learning Management System? For example, it should be possible to transfer borrower records easily between your SMS and ILS.
    • How well does the system work with the Student Management System? For example, will it be easy to transfer borrower records?

    Cataloguing service for schools

    SCIS

  • Training and support

    Ask what training and support is available.

  • Training and support

    Ask what training and support is available.

ILS checklist

The ILS checklist is a practical tool you can use to assess the systems you're evaluating and help you make an informed decision. It's not designed to be comprehensive.

Integrated library systems (ILS) checklist (docx, 115KB)

ILS suppliers

The school library suppliers list includes contact details for the New Zealand suppliers of Integrated Library Systems.

School library suppliers list