Bill Erickson started his Acquisitions roundup by showing us ‘Selection Lists’ – this is a concept I’m unfamiliar with. It’s basically a list of items you want to perform actions on. So you can create a list of items to order and then order from it – but you don’t have to – you can order items individually if you want.
From a bib record you can choose to ‘show/create orders’ and this will show you a history of all orders made for that item including costs. From here you can also add items to the selection list.
From the Z39.50 search you can search for items to order from records cataloged by others and add them to a selection list from there. You can also create a brief record of your own (not the traditional marc editor, just simple questions).
Next we saw the Acquisitions search functionality and it was pretty extensive which is awesome. You can search across all different kinds of objects using the search, so you can search for line items and invoices and selection lists all at once. You can even upload a file with a batch of ISBNs (or UPCs) and search for those items to see what you have or haven’t ordered yet (very very nifty).
This was followed by Patron Requests. Patrons can log in to the OPAC and then enter in what they know about the title they’re requesting and submit that to a staging area that the staff can see. From the request list patrons can put a hold on the item for when it arrives in the library. Should you want to reject a request you can define the reasons why you’re rejecting. There are also a number of new notifications that can be sent to the patron (patron request received, ordered, rejected, item received, etc).
For individual line items you can add notes so that you can communicate among you acq librarians. So if more than one librarian works on your acq process each can leave messages for the other should they need to.
When ordering you can edit fields related to the item you’re ordering in batch or line by line. So if you have 1 title that you want 5 copies of you’ll need to assign the call number and barcode for all 5 items but you can do this in one click instead of repeating 5 times. This also means that each copy you order can come from a different fund.
After you have you order ready you can create a Purchase Order. This process is also where you get to decide if you want to add ‘on order’ items to your catalog (this process will generate temp barcodes for each item). Once the PO is ‘activated’ it can be sent using EDI to the vendor and marks the funds as encumbered. You can also create print POs for vendors that you might have to send a paper PO to.
This next part confuses me – but seems like it might be cool if I can try it out and figure it out – when the vendor sends you the MARC file you can upload it into the acquisitions module and somehow it matches everything up and puts the full marc records into your catalog. The part I’m confused about is that I think Bill is saying that you can upload a marc file without having a PO in place and it will generate one for you … feel free to comment if you know more about this.
This is being tested/actively communicated with:
- Baker & tTaylor
- Midwest Tapes
- Book House
And lots of others are on the radar (Bound to Stay Bound, Gale Cengage, Cholastic/Grolier, Blackwell, Random House, Quality Books, Couts, Library Bound, S&D Books, Raincoast, BWI, Midwest Library Service), but haven’t been tested yet. This is what makes EDI so hard, is configuring it to work with each vendor.
Next you need to receive items you can do this for a PO or a line item. You can also un-receive – aka roll back the whole process.
For the items you can’t receive you need to set up claim policies. To do this you create a policy and then you link a series of actions to that policy. For example you can have a print materials claim policy that sends an email after 10 days late and then again after 30 days late. You can also attach a policy to a vendor, but you can override this on a per line item basis if you want. These are not managed by EDI yet, but will be.
When you are receiving you can then update the items in batch to enter in the real barcodes where the temp barcodes were generated before. Next you might have to do some merging of the records you got from the vendor over your records. The merging offers all kinds of control over what fields you keep and which you don’t want. Along with this will come Connexion Integration.
After this you’re ready for Invoicing. I have to admit – here I got a little lost – which is probably because of my inexperience with working in acquisitions. Also, Bill ran out of time because there was so so so much cool stuff to show, so we didn’t get to see it all 🙁
Learn more by seeing the slides here.