Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Lending to Another Library

Inter-library Loan is the process whereby a patron of one library can borrow books, DVDs, music, etc. and/or receive photocopies of documents that are owned by another library.
This documents how you can use LibraryWorld to lend items to another library.
First, you need to set up policies for a new patron type 'Library' and then create a patron record for each library you want to lend to using the patron type 'Library'. Then check out to the patron (library) using the normal circulation procedures.
Detailed setup procedures:
  1. Go to Settings->Policies, and add a new Patron Type Limit named 'Library'. Set Max Checkouts and Max Overdues as appropriate, probably higher than regular patrons. This will apply to all 'Library' patrons.
  2. Add a new Loan Period and Fine policy, making sure the patron type field says 'Library'. The loan period should be longer than normal.
  3. Go to the Patrons module and add a New Patron. Enter an abbreviated name for the library in the Name field. Enter the contact name in the Address 1 field and normal address information in the rest of the fields. Make sure the patron type field says 'Library'. Also, make sure you include an email address.
Checking the item out:
  1. Go to Circulation and click Checkout (usually defaults).
  2. Enter the abbreviated library name as entered in the patron record and press the Enter key.
  3. Scan or type the barcode number for each item being checked out to that library, carefully reviewing the circulation due dates to verify that the patron type policies for 'Library' are taking effect.
To run a report of all items checked out to other libraries:
  1. Go to the Patrons module, select 'Type' from the drop-down menu, enter 'Library' and press the Enter key.
  2. View the list of patron records of type Library. This is your findset.
  3. Go to Reports and run any of the Checked Out, Overdue or even Email reports being careful to choose the 'Patron Findset Only' option before executing. This will run the report for only those patrons included in the find set you created.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Overdues by Due Date Range

A new feature in LibraryWorld allows you to run overdue reports by a range of due dates.  Sometimes you just want to run overdue notices for patrons that have  seriously overdue items.  Now you can do a patron advanced range search to find patrons with items overdue between two dates.  Then you just run any of the patron overdue reports, choosing the patron find set option.  

Here are the step by step instructions.

Go to the Patron module and select the Advanced button.   Enter two dates in the Range search fields, say 2018-09-01 to 2018-12-31, and do the search.   You'll be shown all patrons with items with due dates between those two dates.  You may be able to just stop there and browse the find set; calling or talking directly to each patron.  Or, you can use one of the many reports.  

To use a report, go to the Reports page and select one of the reports dealing with items checked out or overdue; like notices, letters or even email.   Choose a report and then make sure you select the option to use the patron find set.  This will create a report with only those items that are out and due between the two dates you searched on.

There are occasions where items may have been  placed back on the shelf without being checked in.    These be will get discovered during an inventory, but that might not happen often.  So you can run a report to see if the seriously late overdue items may be on the shelf.  To do so, click on the Advanced button in the Catalog module.  Use the Range search to search on Due Date between two dates. The resulting find set will display catalog records with items due between those dates.  Now go to the Reports module and select the holdings report by call number.   This will display by call number the items overdue between the two dates you searched.  You can print this report and check the shelves for the items.

Range searching by due date can be a very handy method for focusing your time on  seriously overdue items.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Spine and Spine Pocket Label Printing by PDF

Printing spine labels can be frustrating if the text and labels do not line up.  Due to the increasing variables in computers, browsers and printers, that job has become more difficult using HTML pages.   We therefor implemented spine label printing using PDF files, similar to how local bar codes can be printed, which is highly accurate.    All the options are same.  The old HTML version will remain available.

To print spine labels or spine/pocket labels using PDF:
  1. Go to the Reports Modules.
  2. Select 'PDF Spine and Pockets Labels' under 'Other Reports' section. 
  3. Select the Source and other options, then select the Print labels button.
  4. A new tab or window will appear in your browser with a PDF document displaying the labels.  Use the Print command in the File menu to print.  
  5. In the print dialog box make sure footers and headers are turned off and  'Actual Size' option set.   If you do not see the 'Actual Size' option, you may need to save the PDF to your desktop and print using Acrobat Reader with 'Actual Size' set.  
The special spine and spine/pocket label stock can be purchased from LibraryWorld using the 'Market' link at the top of any page.  The spine only stock is $40 for 3,000 labels.   The spine and pocket label stock is $40 for 1,000 label sets (1 spine and 2 pocket labels).

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Shelflist Order Checking During Inventory

The inventory process has been enhanced to check for miss-shelved items during scanning. When you are scanning barcode numbers into the inventory module (this does not work for uploading a file) the service will provide several types of alerts.  An alert will appear if you are scanning an item from a new branch or location.  A warning will be displayed if an item being scanned should be before the last item scanned, indicating one of the items may be out of order.  This works for up to two parts of the call number: both LC and DEWEY standards are supported. An error will appear if the item does not have a status of 'IN'.  Last, an error will appear if the system can not recognize the number.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Checkout Button in Patron Module

A new checkout button has been added to the patron edit page.  If you are reviewing a patron, perhaps seeing what they may have out or due, you can now quickly checkout to that patron.  Also remember that you can check an item in by scrolling down and clicking on the status of an item that is checked out to that patron.

While we are in the 'hints' business, here is another one.  If you are checking an item out in the Circulation module,  you can use either the patron number or the patron name to identify a person.  We recently updated the prompt to make that clear.    Just enter the patron's name instead of their number.  If the name is not unique, a list will appear for you to choose from.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Using LibraryWorld for Textbook Management

At the request of our customers a few years ago, we implemented several features to help manage textbook distribution and tracking.   Although often used by schools to track textbooks being distributed to classrooms, it has also become popular in special libraries to track items being distributed to different departments.  Here is  a detailed description on how it works. 

First,  you need to catalog your textbooks.   Use the ‘New’ command in the Catalog module to create a new title.   Looking up textbooks from the built-in Z39.50 Web client may not be as successful as normal material, but worth a try.  If you do not get a hit, briefly enter bibliographic information.  Since the book will not be used in a normal library manner, the brief record should do well;  enter ISBN, title, author and perhaps publication information.  

Next, use the Add Copy command when viewing the record to add a copy.  Make sure you use a consistent location field such last ‘TEXTBOOK ROOM’ or even ’TBR’ or something similar to indicate the book is in the textbook collection area.   Place a barcode label on the book and make sure it matches the online barcode for the copy.   The call number can be simply the first eight characters of the title.  Again, this will not be shelved in a normal manner.  Last, use the ‘Save and Add Another Copy’ button to quickly add another copy to the same title and repeat. 

Now that you have all the titles and copies cataloged with the Location field consistent with the value ‘TBR’ or something similar, you are ready to start distributing your collection.    Take a set of copies, go to the circulation module and click on the Location button.   You will be prompted for a location. Enter the location the books will be sent to. This could be a classroom, teacher’s name, class subject or perhaps combination ‘SMITH 101 BIO’. Then simply using the scanner to scan each copy’s barcode.   The  location field in the copy record will be changed from ’TBR’ to ‘SMITH 101 BIO’.   There is  no due date, policies or other normal circulation activity done, you are simply changing the location field.   

So how does tracking work?  If  you go to the Reports module, there is a special report called ‘Textbook Summary by Location’ which if you run with a find set on the title,  you will  get a report displaying how many copies are in each location.  If all your titles in the library are textbook, then the report can display all titles with the number of copies in each location.   

Checking textbooks back in at the end of the school year or period is the reverse of signing them out.   Go to the Circulation module and click on the Location button.  Enter the ‘TBR’ name or what ever you used, and just start scanning.   The location of the scanned items will be updated to ‘TBR’.   After all the books are changed, you can then run the Textbook report and discover which copies are outstanding and their locations.  If there are copies outstanding you can find the catalog record and it will display which specific copies  (barcode numbers) are still missing.  

Taking it to the next level.  You can track not only which copies are assigned to a class, but also to a specific student.   After assigning the textbooks to a class, you can then checkout the book to a student.  Using the Temp Due date to assign the due date to the end of the school year or class period, will bypass the traditional circulation policies.    This might be difficult at the central textbook room, but the teacher could write down the barcode number of the copy next to a students name when distributing. They can simply send that back to you for the normal check out process.  This might be more control then necessary, but does provide two levels of tracking; by location and by student.  

We are pleased that the textbook tracking features in LibraryWorld are now being used by hundreds of school and special libraries.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Z39.50 Server Support is Now Available

Z39.50 is an international (ISO 23950) standard for computer-to-computer information retrieval. This makes it possible for a user in one system to search and retrieve information from other computer systems without knowing the search syntax used by those other systems. This is often done by a dedicated Z39.50 client program, a union catalog searching program, or even a cataloging program.
You can now allow Z39.50 clients to search your library by turning on the Z39.50 option. To do so:
  1. Open your library.
  2. Select the Settings link in the navigation bar.
  3. Select General.
  4. Click on an change the 'Allow Z39.50 client option to 'Y'.
  5. Click on the Save button
Notice there is a path underneath the option. That path is used by the Z39.50 client application to open your library to search. The path looks like:[library_name]. The brackets should be removed when using the path and any spaces in the library name should be replaced with underlines.