Alan reviewed the patron comments about the opac redesign. Most early comments focused on missing the information below the search box on the home page (which is now contained within the pull-down menus). He noted that Lion used to receive 3 or 4 comments a month via the opac form, but now Lion receives 20-30, most likely because the comment form can be reached from any screen and not just the home page. However, the majority of comments Lion currently receives concern other library issues, not the opac redesign.
Recent changes include:
Displaying zero as the number of holds and checkouts in My Account if no materials were on hold or checked out. Previously, there would be no link to holds or checkouts in the left navigation if there were none.
Adding the Opt-In agreement to the Reading History page. To opt out, a patron first must delete all reading history records.
Directions in My Account holds list about how to cancel, freeze, and change pickup location. Since this screen is multifunctional, patrons had made mistakes like canceling all of their holds when they tried to change the pickup location.
Darker lines, darker backgrounds, and extra spacing between records in browse lists. Let Alan know if patrons say they still have trouble differentiating between records.
Adjusting text in the directions of My Account holds list to read “To cancel your hold(s)” instead of “To remove your hold(s)” in order to match the Cancel heading over the checkboxes.
Changing the names for the Add to Bag/Empty Bag icons to something more user-friendly (probably Save Record as we used in the previous incarnation of the opac). Please give Alan feedback on whether patrons find this to be an improvement.
Rearranging the Material Types list in the Advanced Search so that the most popular material types are at the top. Books will be changed to Books (excluding Large Type). The abbreviated material type names will be fully spelled out. Also requested having Spanish at the top of the Language list.
Enlarging the drop-down menu of library names on the home page so patrons will always see the option for All Lion Libraries.
Can/should the word Available be red instead of black in the item status field? Libraries reported problems for patrons in matching up the statuses with the items in the browse lists. Perhaps the darker lines and extra spacing between records has alleviated the issue. Please monitor patron response and report back to Alan. We may revisit the issue in the future if patrons continue to have difficulties.
Reading History can be sorted by title or author. Libraries using Reading History for their homebound program may want to try the Homebound module in Millennium for better results.
Alan is looking for volunteers to create documentation for the help screens. Please contact him if you can participate.
If titles are available when holds are unfrozen, they do not end up on the paging list. Eventually, they will show up on Andy’s dead holds list.
In the future, a committee member will serve as project manager on any large Lux Committee project. We will discuss the specifics when the next big project is on the horizon.
Alan demonstrated the new Open ePub titles (we own three). These ebooks do not have any digital rights management and have a slightly different procedure for downloading. Alan will send detailed directions soon.
About half of the Adobe ePub collection now has a corresponding pdf version. This is part of Overdrive’s transition to Kindle compatibility.
Overdrive offers a new design template for our digital catalog. Alan will send a list of sites using the template for the committee to review.
The holds ratio is now 5 to 1 instead of 10 to 1 for purchasing additional copies.
The committee discussed possible ways to handle donor acknowledgement for gift e-books. Lion policy prohibits gift notes in the catalog records. Alan suggested a list with links to the records from the individual libraries’ scoped opacs. Alan will post the question to the IUG listserve and ask Library Connection (who solicits donations for its Overdrive collection) what it does.
Overdrive training for staff and the public continues to be a hurdle in many libraries. Suggestions for successful training included:
Purchasing devices for staff to borrow and for use in demonstrations to patrons.
Linking to YouTube videos made by other Overdrive libraries.
Holding staff training sessions followed soon thereafter by sessions for the public. Have the staff who just attended the training teach the following session for the public.
In the future, the committee would like to offer Overdrive training for Lion libraries’ staff. Please contact Alan if you would like to be a trainer.
Holds on Multi-Part DVD Sets
Holds on pre-pub TV series are a problem for libraries that split them into pieces upon release. The pre-pub holds are bib-level, so patrons may end up receiving non-sequential parts. Unfortunately, there is no simple solution. Alan recommended adding item records when the title is ordered to force patrons to choose a volume. This topic needs to be addressed at the Bib and Circ committees for additional input.
TBD – sometime in the winter and most likely to be held at one of the libraries in eastern CT. Alan will announce the specifics later in the fall. Please continue to use the Lux listserve to share ideas in the interim.