Endeavor, goals, serials and e- stuff

An interesting week in library-land…

We had the Endeavor legacy products ‘come-to-Jesus-meeting’ this week. Good meeting. Staff from Digital Initiatives, Cataloging & Serials, E-Resources Work Group, dean’s asst. (who is highly involved with digital information planning) and the dean attended.

We use to be a wholly Endeavor shop – 3rd organization to sign on with Endeavor back in the mid ‘90s. We have Voyager & Encompass, dropped LinkFinderPlus & Encompass for Resource Access last year and signed up for Meridian in 2005. I mentioned in an earlier post that we were planning our 1st data load for Meridian in January & when news about the death of Meridian reached us in December, we decided to pull back, gather information, talk to Ex Libris at ALA MidWinter, and then meet. Our folks have decided to move to Verde as soon as possible. We’re done with Meridian. Encompass Curator is also on our chopping block. We’ve decided to explore open source software such as Fedora. We already have D-Space up and running our EDTs and may use it as a platform for campus repositories. Some of our existing Encompass collections may move to D-Space. Everyone got their assignments at the meeting and a deadline to move off Curator as soon as possible.

This was goal setting week for individuals I supervise. Updated position descriptions and annual performance plans are due in Admin next week. I reviewed, suggested revisions, and then signed off on 5 by the end of today. Two more to go on Monday.

We had a great discussion at our CatSer dept. meeting on Wednesday (accompanied by chocolate and other goodies, of course)! The serials librarian (Mary) and I had been brainstorming with the mono acq librarian and his supervisor, the head of Collection Services, a few weeks ago. We were exploring the possibility of mono acq staff helping with serials acq duties. We’ve been fortunate the last 3 years to have had 2 different post-MLS residents working with serials and e- acq and cataloging. There’s a chance that our current resident may get a job and leave us this summer, just when that lovely renewal verification process begins, and just when we are in the process of migrating 500+ more titles to e-only.

As we talked, it became apparent that help from mono acq couldn’t be consistently counted on (an important consideration!) though the acq librarian is extremely interested in learning more about the serials and e- side of acquisitions. Hopefully we’ll get a few hours a week out of him!

Mary and I brought up the changing nature of the work we do with print serials. She has 2 staff whose primary job is the cataloging side of serials. Their main focus is serials-related database maintenance, retrocon, and series authority control. New title cataloging is almost exclusively managed by the serials acq folks. Title changes are routed to the catalogers so records can be closed, holdings updated and binding notified. The catalogers also add URLs and net holdings to existing print records when we add online access. But, that’s about to change any minute now because we are implementing the SFX MARCit! Service next week (if all goes well). We’ll do very little cataloging of e-journals. The bodies are needed on the serials/e- acq side of the process.

Another factor – we did basic serials cataloging training with all our monograph copy catalogers (MCC) and 3 original catalogers in the late fall of 2005. All these folks spend approx. one day a week each working on serials retrocon as part of our annex project – everything that is moving to remote storage has to have a full bib and complete holdings info.

So… since everyone is doing some level of serials cataloging, and the serials “experts” are doing the database maintenance (DBM) and higher level work, we decided to move the 2 serials copy catalogers. One now reports to the DBM team leader; the other to the authority control team leader. They will continue to do the tougher serials cataloging problem resolution, but we see their roles in authority control increasing. We’ve “killed” (may it rest in peace) the Serials Team and now have ERSA – the Electronic Resources and Serials Acquisitions Team.

We’re moving the claims functions, previously managed by a serials acq specialist, to the Binding Unit (since they are ones who want those never received issues)! That will free up time so this 2nd serials acq specialist will deal more with our subscription agents. (He has worked mostly with our serials (not periodicals) order & invoicing processes & managed claims in addition to doing an 8 hour shift on the retrocon project). His help with periodical/ejournal acq will be great should our resident leave sooner than we’d like.

Everyone seems to be pleased with the changes we’re making. Sometimes it’s hard to let go but we’re excited to see how this works out. Stay tuned…


2 thoughts on “Endeavor, goals, serials and e- stuff

  1. We’ve only heard that Ex Libris will not support Meridian beyond 2008 so we have halted plans to implement the product. We are working with Ex L to determine when and how we’ll be able to proceed with a Verde install.

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