Washington Group Services News

OCLC Washington Group Services Contract Extension

In July 2020, the Washington State Library and OCLC were pleased to announce a five-year extension of the OCLC Washington Group Services contract, with a maximum annual price increase of 3.75% locked in for the full term of this contract extension. Notwithstanding, the contract also includes a provision ensuring that Group members will not be charged a higher rate than that which is imposed on the OCLC membership at large in any given year.

OCLC Pricing

Individual library prices can vary, due to cataloging and ILL credits, which remain constant, and are not incremented from year to year. Credits are generally based on the library's original "snapshot" year credits, which for most WA Group Services libraries was calendar year 2006. If there are questions about any particular library's pricing, it is possible to request a more current usage audit from OCLC, which could result in either lower OR higher pricing, depending on what is found.

For fiscal year 2024 (July 1, 2023 - June 30, 2024) OCLC announced a 4.25% increase on its membership at large, but Washington OCLC Group Services member libraries will receive a 3.75% increase instead, because of the 5-year contract extension described above.

For fiscal year 2023 (July 1, 2022 - June 30, 2023) OCLC announced a 5% price increase on its membership at large, This was the first time, to our knowledge, that WA OCLC Group Services member libraries actually received a LOWER cost increase (3.75%) than the OCLC membership at large.

For fiscal year 2022 (July 1, 2021 - June 30, 2022) OCLC announced a 2% price increase. For Washington OCLC Group Services libraries, the 3.75% increase described above was applied to the individual OCLC services (Cataloging, ILL, FirstSearch/WorldCat Discovery) and then a 1.69% "Covid discount" was applied to the total, resulting in a 2% increase over the previous year's costs.

Pricing History

For fiscal year 2021 (July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021), due to the pandemic, there was no cost increase.

For fiscal year 2020 (July 1, 2019 - June 30, 2020), the OCLC Board of Trustees approved a 3.75% increase across the board.

For fiscal year 2019 (July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019) the OCLC Board of Trustees approved a 3.75% increase across the board.

For fiscal year 2018 (July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018) OCLC pricing for Cataloging and ILL were incremented by 3%, and WorldCat Discovery (FirstSearch) pricing was incremented 3.5%.

For fiscal year 2017 (July 1, 2016 - June 30, 2017), the OCLC Board of Trustees again approved a 3% price increase. That was the third year in a row with a 3% increase.

For fiscal year 2014 (July 1, 2013 - June 30, 2014), the OCLC Board of Trustees approved a 2.75% increase in prices for all OCLC products and services. This was the second year in a row with the same increase, after three years with zero increases.

Libraries participating in Washington Group Services saw a decrease in OCLC costs for Cataloging, Resource Sharing/ILL, and Access for the 2009-2010 fiscal year which began July 1, 2009. The average decrease was 2.45%, with most libraries seeing a drop of at least 2% in basic OCLC service costs, some more.

Libraries purchasing WorldCat subscriptions through Washington Group Services saw a 4-5% decrease in those costs as well. The costs for libraries renewing through the Pacific Northwest FirstSearch Group remained level.

OCLC had previously announced zero price increases for the 2009-2010 fiscal year, but the implementation of “end-user pricing” reduced surcharges, resulting in lower prices for libraries.

OCLC WorldCat Discovery

WorldCat® Discovery is a suite of cloud-based applications that complements the previous OCLC FirstSearch® and WorldCat® Local services. With WorldCat Discovery Services, searchers can discover more than 4 billion electronic, digital and physical resources from libraries and publishers around the world, through a single search of WorldCat and a central index representing more than 3,108 collections from leading publishers. It provides an effective way to search WorldCat and enables libraries to offer a rich discovery experience.

WorldCat Discovery is a continuation of the previous subscription to WorldCat on FirstSearch provided by Washington Group Services or via the Pacific Northwest FirstSearch Group, with new and expanded functionality for library staff and library users. For more information, visit the WorldCat Discovery page at OCLC's web site.

Wayfinder Catalog Officially Discontinued

Due to low usage, the Washington State Library discontinued LSTA funding for Wayfinder: The Catalog of Washington Libraries in 2013. However the statewide catalog is still available for public searching at https://wayfinder.worldcat.org, but without the Wayfinder branding. All of the original scopes are still available.

Contact Information

For questions about any of the information on this page, contact Washington OCLC Group Services coordinator, Will Stuivenga:

Will Stuivenga
Cooperative Projects Manager
Washington State Library
[email protected]

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Funded in part by the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA).