Search Results for: due slips

Due slips

The Due slip is a list of the items the patron has just checked out.  It is commonly printed, but can now also be emailed.   It can be set up using the system default or be completely customized.  This is up to each Library Director.  Staff should refer to their director for established processes for the Due Slip.   Emailing Due Slips became available on our system on 7/7/2020 with our upgrade from 4.9 to 5.1.  It is a feature that was voted forward in Idea Lab and included in Sierra release 5.0.

What do I need to know about emailed Due Slips?

Checking out

You will checkout to the patron as you normally do.  As you close the record your Due slip will be delivered, according to your default setting.  

Default settings in  Options:

    • Default set to “Print” (shown) = The Due Slip prints at your selected receipt printer/local printer (likely an Epson Receipt printer).  More info on setting up a printer

    • Default set to “Email” = patron is sent the email if they have an email address in their record.  If there is no email in their record, you will be prompted to ask the patron for an email address.

    • Default is set to “No Slip” – nothing happens

My patron prefers something else!  If your patron would like to receive the Due Slip in an alternative way from your default, for example if you print by default and your patron would like an email instead.Click the Due Slip button

  1. Select the patron’s preferred method.

  2. Close the selection box.

  3. Complete the checkout and close the record,  You will see the button has changed to the new delivery selection.  As you close the record the Due Slip will be delivered using the edited selection.  The default delivery method will return with the next patron record.
Notes:
  • This is a great opportunity to ask patrons to verify their email!
  • Email due slips are not available in the offline client
  • Email is available in the Sierra Web client
 

Using Custom Due Slips in Print Templates

Below are a few examples of custom Due Slips.   MHLS Tech Support can work with library directors to create a customized template for the library.   For emailed Due Slips, we recommend live links that will make contacting the library, checking their account, or visiting your website a single click away.   You must select a template in Admin/Settings/ Print Templates .

Site Index

Print Templates: Export / Import

Exporting the file to work on

To do any editing to your template it must be exported to outside of Sierra.  You will be exporting a copy of the original to the location of your choice.  If you are using Jaspersoft, a directory is already in place for you to store your work.  It is called MyReports and is found within the directory folder called JaspersoftWorkspace.

Tip: before you begin work on the file create a safe copy of the file.  Once you import your work back in, you may find that the safe copy is your only working copy.

To Export:

  1. Click to highlight and select your template
  2. Click Export
  3. Use the look in drop down or the directory tools to find the location or folder you want to export to.
  4. Click Choose directory

Importing the file back in

Tip: Send any pending notices for the template type Before importing

Tip: Use the same exact name for the edited file to avoid having all staff change their template preferences.

Warning: There is no undo with importing, but you will get a warning that you are about to overwrite your template.  Be sure you have chosen the Right template output type and the right family!

  1. From Sierra Print template, choose the correct output type to import your file into
  2. Click Import
  3. A window will appear called New Print Template Attributes
  4. Use the same  Template family as your previous file 
  5. Click Browse and Navigate to the file location and click on it. 
  6.  You will see your file in the template files window 
  7. Language can be left at none- we have only English
  8. Delivery method can be left to ANY for most templates,  If you will only print the template (Due Slips, transit, etc.  it should be print).

Working with Sierra Login Options

The Options menu allows you to customize your Sierra experience.  Each Sierra login is created with a number of defaults, but if you would like, you can select alternatives for how Sierra will behave. These changes are made within your personal login and will only affect the way Sierra works for you.

To access the Options menu, select the Admin drop down menu and choose Options.  

Important Note: If you do not see Options in this menu, the library director can request that it be added to your authorized functions.

When the Options box opens there will be a number of tabs representing the different settings you can select to apply to your Sierra Login.

Within each tab, the features already selected will be the defaults. Other features can be enabled if you choose. Certain features, although listed in the Options, are not used in the MHLS system.

DUE SLIPS

The Due Slips settings allows you to customize the delivery methods and the information that Sierra includes on the due slips you generate during circulation transaction.

Due slip delivery: Select the method(s) you would like available to you to generate due slips. You can select Print or Email if you would like to be able to generate due slips in either or both of these options. If you select both, you will be able to select how to provide the due slip during checkouts. You can also select the default for either Print, Email, or No Slip. If a patron would prefers an alternative to your default option (such as wanting an Emailed due slip even though your default is Print), you can generate this for the patron –

For additional information about generating due slips during Check Out see Due Slips

Patron Display Options

The Patron Display settings determines the information that Sierra displays for patron records when accessing the Patron in the Check Out function. You can select the default Brief display, a Brief display with the address included or create a customized display.

Tabs

The Tabs setting allows you to specify which tabs will display for the Patron in the Check Out function. Check the boxes for each tab to be displayed and accessed during Circulation transactions.

Edit

The options set from the Edit menu control the edit function in Sierra, The settings you may want to consider are the Use wizard to create new records, which determines whether Sierra offers you a “wizard” (a series of prompts) to walk you through creating new records, and the Fixed-length Field Display Mode, which determines whether record fields display as codes only, descriptions only, or as both codes and descriptions.

Holds

The Holds settings determine options for placing requests for patrons, whether you can place Bib level holds on Bib records with none or only one Item record attached. 

Sounds

The Sounds menu lets you choose which, if any, sound clips are used by Sierra for various Circulation activities. The following buttons control the sound settings:

Disable sounds – Turns sound off for all activities.

Use default beep – Use the workstation’s standard beep for all activities.

Use customized sounds – Allows choosing a sound clip for each activity.

Login 

The Login menu contains options Clear permissions on keyboard timeout and Exit application on keyboard timeout. These checkboxes will control how Sierra will act when the keyboard timeout period expires.

Clear permissions on keyboard timeout – If selected, the Sierra clears the current permissions after the keyboard times out. Sierra does not close and the user license for this session is not released. 

Exit application on keyboard timeout – If selected, Sierra closes the application and releases the user license after the keyboard times out.

This Option also determines which Sierra access methods (desktop application and/or Web Client) are available to you.

Printing 

The Printing menu allows you to specify settings for printers accessible by the user.

Print receipts for checked-in items – If checked, Sierra automatically prints checkin receipts when you check in items from the Circulaion Desk function.

Setup 

The options in the Setup menu control various features in Sierra functions for Circulation display and  option for Serials and Acquisitions.

Login can edit preferences- Controls whether the user can change his or her preferences using Edit | Preferences.

Show record number in brief record display – If selected, the record number displays above the brief display of a record (bib, Patron, and Item) at the top of browse display.

Show amount owed in Fines tab – If selected, Sierra displays the amount of money owed by the patron in the Fines menu.

Remove claims returned notes for checked-in items – If selected, Sierra removes the claims returned notes in the patron and item records when the item is checked in.

Add message at checkout – Determines whether Circulation will display the Add Message button in the Check Out menu of Circulation Desk function.

Recent check-in history – Defines the maximum number of checked-in items that Sierra stores in the Recent Check-Ins submenu.

Recent patron history – Defines the maximum number of patrons Sierra stores in the Recent Patrons submenu.

Recent Record history – Defines the maximum number of records that Sierra stores in the Recent  Records submenu. 

Recent Search history – Defines the maximum number of searches Sierra stores in the Recent Searches submeu. 

 

 

ArticleReach 

ArticleReach is an ILL function for requesting articles. While this menu is displayed in the Options, it is only used by sites that  have purchased the ArticleReach product.

Departments 

Is only available for libraries that have established multiple ILL departments. We are not using this and so you can ignore this menu.

Web Mastert

While you can make changes to the Web Master menu, it will not give you access to manage the web display screens in Sierra.

Data Exchange

The Data Exchange is a record loading feature used by the MHLS Cataloging department. This menu enables defining the import and export processes that are available in the Data Exchange function.

Receipt Printer Setup

Receipt printer: Prints due slips, and receipts.
 
  1. From Sierra’s top toolbar go to File, then select Printer
  1. Choose local printer. and then click “OK”.
  1. Select your printer from the drop down list.  In this case it is the Epson TM-T88V Receipt, which is a common model.
  1. Switch to the Format tab.
    • If you use a print template, set the Format to Graphic
    • Otherwise set the Format to Text(narrow)
Text(Narrow)

Sierra Offline Procedures

You don’t want to wait until you need the Offline Client to download the software and know how to use it – Click HERE for a video tutorial about Using the Sierra Offline Client

Why have an offline Circulation System? Sierra Offline Circulation allows you to conduct basic circulation transactions during those unforeseen times when the main system is unavailable due to the loss of a network connection. Once the system is restored, the offline transactions are transmitted to the online server. These transactions will appear and behave as though they had taken place as a normal online circulation transaction.

 Using the Offline Circulation System

To use Sierra Offline Circulation, double click on the Sierra Offline Circulation icon on your desktop.

Main Screen – In Check Out Mode

Before you use the Offline client for the first time, you will need to select the “View” tab and choose “Preferences” to add some information on the initial startup.

Fill out the fields on the pop-up window.

  •  Your “Statistics Group” is your terminal number, a three-digit number starting with a 7.
  • To locate your terminal number, see the Terminal Number Alphabetically by Location document.
  • Leave the “Date Format” as is
  • Leave the “Check barcode validity” box checked o If you choose to, you can set up Due Slips.
  • Select “Apply”.

Checking Out Items

Start Sierra Offline Circulation. By default, the Sierra Offline Circulation opens it the “Check-Out mode.

Sierra Offline Circulation prompts you to enter the patron’s barcode so Key or scan the patron’s barcode and press Enter.

Sierra Offline Circulation prompts you to enter the due date for the items that you will check out to the patron. Enter the due date in the following format: MM-DD-YYYY

Sierra Offline Circulation asks you whether it should use an hourly loan rule for the items that you will check out to the patron. Select “N” for no.

Sierra Offline Circulation prompts you to enter the barcode for each item that you are checking out to the patron. Key or scan the item barcode and press “Enter”.

If you want to check out items using a different due date, select the New Due Date and enter the new date when prompted.

If you want to check out items to another patron, choose the “Clear Patron” button. Sierra Offline Circulation prompts you to enter the patron’s barcode. The follow the directions above.

The Sierra Offline Client will keep a running list of the items checked out.

Checking In Items

At this time, do not use the check in function.

 

Renewing Items

Start Sierra Offline Circulation and change to the Renew mode.

Sierra Offline Circulation prompts you to enter the patron’s barcode. Key or scan the patron’s barcode and press Enter.

Sierra Offline Circulation prompts you to enter the due date for the items that you are renewing. Enter the due date in the following format: MM-DD-YYYY

Sierra Offline Circulation asks you whether it should use an hourly loan rule for the renewals. Select “N” for no.

Sierra Offline Circulation prompts you to enter the barcode for each item that you are renewing for the patron. Key or scan each item barcode and press Enter to renew.

If you want to renew another patron’s items, choose the Clear Patron button. Sierra Offline Circulation prompts you to enter the patron’s barcode (see Step 2 above).

 

Creating Patron Records

At this time, do not use the create patron records function.

 

Uploading Transactions

Approval is not necessary to begin this process. As soon as you come back online, you may proceed through the steps below.

From the File drop-down menu, select Upload circulation and patron data

The offline client will as you if the server is ready to receive the data you are about to send. In effect asking you if you are re-connected to the Sierra server.

If you are re-connected to the Sierra server, choose Yes.

The Sierra Offline Client will confirm the number of transactions that have been sent to the server

And ask if you want to clear the circulation file, choose Yes to clear the file.

The offline client will confirm that the file has been cleared.

The last step is for the transactions to be processed in the Sierra Client. If you have permission to process these yourself, do so from the Function options in your Sierra Login*.

There should be a file ready for processing.

Click on the Process All Files button to load the transactions.

When the records have been processed, Sierra will provide a Summary indicating if there are any messages to display. If there are, the will be available from the View Log Files drop down selection. Locate the messages associated with your Terminal Number and click on View.

*If you do not have permission to process the offline transactions file, contact MHLS at techsupport@midhudson.org to request that the transactions be processed.

Checking out

This page will cover the basics of checking out items.

Logging in to Sierra

Sierra is the name of the Library software that you will use to perform the main operations of library Circulation like checking in and out items, renewing, and much more. You should already have a Sierra login to get you started –

Find the Sierra Icon and double click on it.

Log in using your Username and Password. Libraries can have multiple initials, with different levels of authority, so if you are unsure of what username and password to use, just ask your supervisor or coworkers. If you are using a shared computer, do not select “Remember me on this computer”.

Checking out Items

When a patron selects items they would like to borrow from the library, they will bring them to the circulation desk to check them out. “Checking Out” library items to a patron links the item to the patron’s account, making the person responsible for its safe and timely return. The first step in checking items out is to retrieve the patron’s account. To retrieve a patron’s account, select the “Check Out (Circulation Desk)” function from the Function drop down menu on the right-hand side of the screen.

Start by opening a patron record by using one of the following methods in the patron search box.

To open a patron’s record, you have 3 options:

  1. Pass the barcode on the patron’s library card under the scanner, moving the card back and forth, allowing the red line to pass over the barcode from top to bottom.
  2. Type in the numbers from the library card’s barcode (without spaces) and press Enter.
  3. Type the letter “n”, followed by the patron’s last name, a comma, a space, and finally the first name and press enter.

Example: nDuck, Rosie – then enter (It doesn’t matter if you capitalize your letters or not)

After entering the name or library card number of the patron, you will see the patron information in the Check Out header.

Before you can access the patron information, a Message may open in the middle of the screen. You will need to acknowledge this message before you can perform any circulation functions for this patron.

The record will open in the Check Out Function. Make sure your cursor is blinking in the “Key or Scan Item or Patron Barcode” box and simply scan in the barcodes located on the items.

As you check out items, information will appear in the grid below displaying the item’s Barcode, Title and the Due Date. You may need to acknowledge any message associated with the item before the item will appear in the grid, and before you can scan additional items.

When you have finished scanning all the items that patrons wishes to borrow, complete the transaction by clicking the Due Slip button

If your login has the permission to generate either a printed receipt or to email one to the patron, you will be given the option to choose Due Slip delivery. 

For additional information on options for Due Slips, please see Due Slips.

Sierra Release Information

Keeping current with our software makes it possible for us to move quickly when important enhancements are available. It also ensures that we have all fixes in place. We choose to take each upgrade up after the release has had a period of use and vetting.

Sierra 6.1 Upgrade 1/29-30

Export a table of User Permissions

  • Exporting user permissions will enable library administrators to easily review and compare the permissions assigned to each user to:
    • provide a comprehensive list of permissions to managers for review of roles
    • spot any gaps where a user is missing a permission they should have
    • spot any redundant or inappropriate permissions that have remained from previous roles.

    A new option to “Export Permissions” was added to the Admin App

    Re-bill Patrons for Outstanding Charges

    Libraries want to be able to send follow-up bills to patrons who owe the library money for lost materials and other unpaid charges. This enhancement provides a configurable setting that allows the library to send multiple bills to patrons with outstanding balances. The library can configure how many bills will be sent and how many days apart the bills can be prepared. The new Repeated Bills notices must be configured by the library after upgrade and prior to sending the follow-up bills to patrons.

    Reprint Bills

    Library staff will be able to reprint a previously sent bill from the patron’s notice history. Bills can be reprinted from the Fines tab of the patron display using either a new right-click menu option or the Reprint Bill button. To be eligible to be reprinted, a bill must have been sent after upgrade to Sierra 6.1 and in the last 60 days and must still have a balance due. Bills that are more than 60 days old or have been fully paid or waived are automatically purged from the Sierra database. Staff users must have permission 361 to reprint bills.

    Show Time of Last Status Update Date

    Based on customer requests, the last status update date introduced in Sierra 6.0 has been enhanced to show the date and time the status was last changed.

    Add Last Status Update Date to Create Lists 

    The last status update date field has been added to Create Lists to allow library staff to search for records using this field, and to list, sort, and export data using this field.

    Bonus-not published in release notes!

    When an item with a pop-up message is checked in, the message includes Title, Author, Call number and Barcode.
    The example below is a test record, but I think you get the gist of how the message is now appearing

Sierra 6.0 Upgrade 9/14/23

View item status change date:
Starting in Sierra 6.0. Sierra will display the last date an item status was updated when a user hovers over the status field in an item record. The last-status-update field is also included in the SierraDNA Views as part of the item record status view. Note: the last_status_update field will be empty until the item’s status changes after the library as upgraded to Sierra 6.0 or higher

View patron record from Holds screen:
This enhancement allows an authorized staff member to see the patron information when viewing an item, volume or bib-level hold in order to easily identify the correct patron in the holds queue. If the staff user is not authorized to use permission 161 (View patron records), 162 (Create patron records) or 164 (Update patron records), the override permissions pop-up is presented.

Display due date and status in Holds/Bookings view
Sierra will display both the status and the due date of checked-out items when searching the catalog so that staff can easily differentiate between normal checked-out items and those that have additional status information.

Display statistical group name in item record
Sierra will display the descriptive name of the statistical group in the checkout location (OUT LOC) and checkin location (IN LOC) in the item record so that staff can easily interpret the location information without memorizing the Statistical Group Maintenance table.

Sierra 5.6 Upgrade 3/20/23

This release fixes the following bugs

  • Keyword searches limited by year do not retrieve results published in that year

    When staff perform a keyword search and then use Tools | Limit to enter Publisher Year, materials published in that year range are not found.

  • Compact Browse: Search results display incorrectly for some titles; showing the indexed entry and not the diacritics

    When performing a title search, some re

    Fails to register barcode scanner’s carriage return in Search/Holds box after another index is searched

    Search/Holds and Catalog search function are not registering the barcode scanner’s carriage return (confirmed the scanner uses CR) on random scans, but particularly when the user switches between searching a different index (e.g., title, author, etc.) and the barcode index. As a result, the search is not automatically performed immediately upon scan; the user must initiate the search manually instead. Note: This barcode scanning issue is not replicated in other Circulation functions (e.g., Check-out and Check-in).

  • Fails to register barcode scanner’s carriage return in Search/Holds box after another index is searched

    Search/Holds and Catalog search function are not registering the barcode scanner’s carriage return (confirmed the scanner uses CR) on random scans, but particularly when the user switches between searching a different index (e.g., title, author, etc.) and the barcode index. As a result, the search is not automatically performed immediately upon scan; the user must initiate the search manually instead. Note: This barcode scanning issue is not replicated in other Circulation functions (e.g., Check-out and Check-in).

  • Holds clear from holdshelf one day early after pickup date modified in Manage Holds

    After staff modify hold pickup dates in Manage Holds, the Clear Holdshelf report clears the hold on the pickup date rather than on the day after the pickup date.  (For example, if the modified pickup date is Feb 17, the item should not appear on the Clear Holdshelf report until Feb 18 but appears on Feb 17.)

  • Notice History records “0” for bills via email with Print Templates

    When a library formats Bill notices with Print Templates, Notice History records an entry with “0” count for any bills sent via email.

  • No record written to Fines Paid when a billed item is renewed and the bill automatically adjusts to zero

    When staff renew a billed item, and the automatically adjusted charge is zero, no entry is written to Fines Paid.  Sierra should record the removed replacement charge to Fines Paid with a payment status of “no payment,” to indicate that the item had previously been billed but that the bill has been automatically adjusted.  (If the charge adjusts to an amount other than zero, Sierra does write correctly to Fines Paid.)

  • Exporting either patron telephone field tag outputs both

    In Create Lists, if staff select either TELEPHONE (t) or TELEPHONE2 (p) field for export from patron records, Sierra includes both fields in the exported file.

 Sierra 5.5 Upgrade 11/16/22

Send an additional courtesy notice

Libraries sometimes want to send patrons multiple reminders when items are coming due soon. With this enhancement, libraries will be able to send patrons one additional courtesy notice on the day before an item is due. Additional courtesy notices can be run manually or as autonotices. Additional courtesy notices will not attempt to auto-renew items that are checked out. In the event that autonotices are configured and set to run multiple times per day, an additional courtesy notice will only be sent once to a patron on any given day.

Send an additional courtesy notice

Libraries sometimes want to send patrons multiple reminders when items are coming due soon. With this enhancement, libraries will be able to send patrons one additional courtesy notice on the day before an item is due. Additional courtesy notices can be run manually or as autonotices. Additional courtesy notices will not attempt to auto-renew items that are checked out. In the event that autonotices are configured and set to run multiple times per day, an additional courtesy notice will only be sent once to a patron on any given day.

  • Additional Courtesy Notices are an extension of Courtesy Notices and require the primary Courtesy Notice to be enabled in loan rules in order for the additional notice to be sent.
  • Additional Courtesy Notices are a new notice type and require a separate notice job from the Courtesy Notices notice type.
  • Like existing Courtesy Notices functionality, an item must receive its Additional Courtesy Notice on the day the notice is scheduled, or the notice will not be sent at all.  Innovative recommends configuring both types of Courtesy Notices to run automatically every day.
  • Additional Courtesy Notices do not perform automatic renewal.

Display the location of the holdshelf

In libraries with multiple pickup locations, it can be difficult to determine which holdshelf an item is on. With this enhancement, Sierra will display the location of the holdshelf as part of the status information for an item that is either currently on the holdshelf or was recently canceled and the clear holdshelf process has not been run. Depending on the library’s configuration, the status message will include either the display name from the hold pickup locations table or the branch name. The status message will appear on the View item record screen and in the status bar of the Manage Holds display.

Library staff wants a workflow that makes it easy to mark damaged items and bill for their replacement, similar to the lost item workflow in Sierra. This enhancement adds a new option to the Mark Damaged item workflow that ensures a consistent experience for staff and patrons when managing damaged items. The new option is labeled Mark Damaged And Add Bill and it will be used to mark the item as “Billed” and bill the patron for the replacement of the item.

Windows Snap feature

Library staff members want to be able to easily size and position the Sierra client windows on their workstations when Sierra is one of several applications they use throughout the day. With this enhancement, staff members can use the Windows Snap feature to move and size the Sierra desktop application on their workstations.

By dragging the client with the mouse or using the Windows button in conjunction with specific arrow keys, SDA users can move and position the Sierra client on their desktop. Staff members may also use the Windows Snap commands to maximize or minimize the Sierra client on their desktop.

Because of technical limitations, the Windows Snap feature has no effect on the Sierra login window or on bibliographic and patron windows that appear in the multi-window mode.

New workflow for Mark Damaged Items

Library staff wants a workflow that makes it easy to mark damaged items and bill for their replacement, similar to the lost item workflow in Sierra. This enhancement adds a new option to the Mark Damaged item workflow that ensures a consistent experience for staff and patrons when managing damaged items. The new option is labeled Mark Damaged And Add Bill and it will be used to mark the item as “Billed” and bill the patron for the replacement of the item.

When using this workflow, the item will be checked in when the item is marked damaged and a bill is added. Based on library policies, a processing fee and billing fee will be added automatically, and the damage charge will be linked to the item and the patron. When the fee is paid, the item status automatically updates to damaged. This allows the library to distinguish “damaged and billed” from “lost and billed” in reports.ThisUpgrade

Keeping current with our software makes it possible for us to move quickly when important enhancements are available. It also ensures that we have all fixes in place. We choose to take each upgrade up after the release has had a period of use and vetting.

Sierra 5.4 in General Release 11/15/21
MHLS is live on release 5.4 as of 1/26/22

New features

  • Date ranges in Days Closed
    When entering many closed dates for the same location in the Days Closed table, library staff want to specify dates as a range so that the table is more readable and takes less time to maintain. With this enhancement, users can enter a range of calendar dates in the Days Closed table and Sierra will act as if the user added Days Closed records for every single date in the range.
    This is useful for extended closures such as renovations, and the impact is especially significant when larger disasters force multiple locations or an entire system to close suddenly.
  • Make Auto Notices observe Days Closed
    Libraries want to avoid sending notices to patrons on days when the library is closed. This enhancement looks at the Days Closed calendar so that Auto Notices aren’t generated on days the library is closed.
  • Globally purge charges by After date
    Libraries need to be able to purge fines and fees for different time periods to accommodate emergency closures and other situations – for example, if a library wishes to apply an amnesty during a disaster. This enhancement allows libraries to waive fines assessed after a given date or between two specific dates, rather than only before a date. This allows more selective targeting of fines assessed during a certain period of time.
  • Batch update hold pickup dates
    Libraries need options to quickly update hold pickup dates for multiple items for multiple patrons, such as extending hold pickup dates during emergency closures, including COVID-19. This enhancement uses Manage Holds to allow staff users to batch update the hold pickup date for items that are currently on the holdshelf. A new staff permission (788: Update Batch Holds) controls access to this feature.
  • Use Time to Holdshelf interval to delay hold pickup notice
    Patrons sometimes receive notification that an item is ready for pickup before library staff can move the physical item to the pickup area. The Time to Holdshelf interval, previously applied only to hold display in My Account, can optionally delay the the Hold Pickup notice so that the physical item will have a chance to reach the holdshelf before the notice is sent.
    Time to Holdshelf does not apply to hold pickup SMS Alerts.
  • Provide specific block messages to patrons
    Patrons need specific information when they are blocked and unable to complete a transaction in the WebPAC. This enhancement will provide clearer explanations for patron blocks so that patrons will know why they are not able to complete an action. If users have more than 1 block, all block reasons are shown.
  • Increased number of Sierra Web users
    Libraries will be able to increase the number of library staff who can access Sierra remotely via Sierra Web. This enhancement provides scaling of Sierra Web through the set up and load balancing of multiple instances of Sierra Web. Although each instance still has a 60-user limit, the library can run multiple instances to increase the number of Sierra Web users.
  • Harvest Sierra data using OAI-PMH
    This enhancement provides a new web app to integrate with external systems to harvest Sierra records using OAI-PMH. This option removes manual update processes and ensures that integration partners have the most updated view of the library’s holdings.
    The OAI-PMH web app is able to present Sierra’s records as an OAI-PMH repository, represented in Dublin Core. The mapping from Sierra records to Dublin Core elements (or “crosswalk”) is configurable by the user in the Admin app. The OAI-PMH web app can also (optionally) organize records into “sets” according to Sierra’s scopes.
  • Support the SDA installer on MacOS Big Sur
    In November 2020, Apple announced the release of the MacOS Big Sur. Libraries that run Sierra on Macs need to be able to install the client on the new MacOS. This enhancement adds support to the SDA for MacOS Big Sur.

Issues fixed

  • Manage Holds omits on-holdshelf and pickup dates in the status bar
  • Sorting bib hold queue by priority sorts in alpha order instead of numerically
  • Create Lists does not persist record view when navigating to Next Record or Previous Record
  • Renaming a review file allows a blank name
  • In Serials Checkin, copying a bibliographic record with location “multi” creates an empty bib record
  • Freeze when attempting to export records from Create Lists
  • Various causes of freezes in Sierra Web sessions
  • Issue with saving after opening and closing multiple Parameters tables
  • Sorting bib hold queue by priority sorts in alpha order instead of numerically
  • And more…

Release Notes for Sierra 5.3 – April 2021

New features

Sierra Holds

  • You will be able to see if holds are frozen in the staff view
  • When staff place title holds they will simply page – no more “page title?” pop up.

Sierra holds reporting improved

  • The View Outstanding holds report will be renamed Rename the feature “Manage Holds”
  • Search and display real-time hold information (IUG ballot winner)
  • Modify, cancel or place holds from the “Manage Holds” window
  • Update limits to better meet library needs for managing holds, including
  • Move limit selection to a separate tab to make more space for viewing hold information
  • The report will be able to export

Updates to Create list

  • Double click on empty review file to start a search 
  • Create List – It’s all about me! Limit view to my login (MHLS Idea lab) 
  • Create Lists: Have the ‘Stop’ range be a wildcard (*) 
  • Enlarge the classic search query window in Create Lists 
  • Copy and paste a line for searching several different values of the same field 
  • Don’t clear Search Criteria if you change the Store Record Type

Release Notes for Sierra 5.2

New features

  • “AND NOT” boolean operator in Create Lists 
    The new “AND NOT” operator allows negation of operators that do not currently allow negation or negation of a group of OR’ed criteria. 
  • Display name on circulation emails.
    Sierra will use the Branch Name from Branch Addresses as the display name for the From: and Reply-To: headers on circulation notices.  Sierra will take the display name from the Library Name for due slips and payment receipts and for circulation notices where email information is not in Branch Addresses.
  • Remember me” does not save passwords.
    The SDA will no longer store and pre-populate the password when a user chooses to “Remember me on this computer.”  Only the username will be stored and pre-populated.
  • Improved Navigation in My Account
    In My Account, WebPAC no longer hides the navigation entry for the currently-visible patron information.  For example, if the patron is viewing holds, the navigation entry for holds will still display.  There is a new class (patFuncBtnCurrent) for the current-page navigation entry
  • Improved accessibility in My Account.
    Several accessibility flaws with the patron function table in My Account have been resolved.  This includes adding labels to form elements and simplifying the table structure for easier parsing by screen readers.
  • Patron name now optional in emails generated for ILL Requests.
    (We will be using ILL shortly) A new option has been added so that system administrators can prevent the patron name from being displayed in emails generated for ILL requests.

Issues fixed

  • Cancel button broken in new bib record creation.
  • Accessing the Holds, on a patron with a large number of holds, takes too long.
  • Exporting records via Sierra Create Lists is slow.
  • Required Restart after Password Change for Checkout Override on hold items.
  • When Verifying Headings in fields 600 and 650 facets don’t always show up.
  • Unable to delete bad fields.
  • Not all messages recorded in Circulation Overrides when renewing an item.
  • Create Lists: double clicking to view or edit a record does not work if review file is owned and user does not have permission.
  • Create Lists: Saved Exports: unable to edit a saved export.
  • Create Lists queries fail when searching against a review file of ITEM records.
  • Create Lists fails to search the punctuation comma on patron address fields.

Release Notes for Sierra 5.1

New features

  • In the Delete Records function, staff can restore deleted records from the Process Summary window.
  • Staff can open up to ten Parameters tables simultaneously in the SDA or Sierra Web (for example, Loan Rules and Loan Rule Determiner).
  • Staff can export the Loan Rules and Loan Rule Determiner tables in CSV format.
  • The button for staff to page an item-level hold now says “Page for item,” consistent with wording for title-level holds.
  • Patrons can freeze holds even if more than 255 days have passed since the hold was placed.
  • Password Policies include an option to disable the Sierra Desktop Application’s Remember Me functionality.
  • Continued improvements to Sierra Web on iOS tablets
  • Security of patron data uploaded from offline circulation stations has been enhanced through an updated version of the standalone installable client supporting secure (HTTPS) connections to Sierra

Issues fixed

  • The entry doesn’t display ‘Your entry … would be here’ if no result is found
  • Ecommerce duplicating payments
  • Scrollbar skips to top of the table in Graphical Browse Display
  • Unable to modify hold pickup location in the patron record if item has been checked out to another patron while on the holdshelf
  • Delay in getting SMS notification
  • Sierra Desktop App shuts down with a “Server not responding” message” when “View Cancelled Holds” is selected.
  • Show Info on some review files does not work and puts the SDA session in a bad state

Release Notes for Sierra 5.0 

New features in Sierra 5.0 (to be included when we upgrade to Sierra 5.1)

  • Staff can choose a print or email due slip (or no slip) when checking out or renewing items in Check Out.
    • New Due Slip Options configure available and default delivery method for each login.  (Staff circulation no longer uses the “Check-out: Print date due slips” Circulation Option.)
      • The Sierra upgrade will automatically set the new Due Slip Options according to existing due slip configuration (for example, if a login had immediate due slip printing before the upgrade, they will still have it afterward).  Email due slips will not be enabled automatically.
    • The “Print slip” checkbox is now a “Due Slip” button.
    • Email due slips require Print Templates.
    • Sierra will not prompt to “Print date due slip?” when entering Check Out (“ASK” setting of “Check-out: Print date due slips” Circulation Option).
  • The intermediate confirmation page for modifying holds in WebPAC and Encore displays a new “Action” column describing the pending change. (Winner of Sierra Public Services Smorgasbord challenge.)
  • Staff can re-run Create Lists queries, either by re-running an existing query or editing an existing query.
  • In Create Lists, if you remove records from the list, you will be able to restore them while you are still in that review file.
  • Improved customize facet functionality to include all facets
  • Support for Sierra Web on iOS tablets using Chrome browser
  • Sierra Web support of 60 concurrent users
  • My Account display of titles will now consistently display the same title as would appear on a circulation notice for the same record.  Previously, My Account used a simpler algorithm for selecting the title which could lead to differences.

Resource Sharing Standards_Draft

Each library is responsible for any loss incurred when it does not follow Resource Sharing policies. ~Approved by Directors Association 11/6/19

Patron Registration / Records

 Policies:

  1. System Residents: A patron account, for use in all Mid-Hudson Library System member libraries, shall be created free of charge at all Mid-Hudson libraries for anyone meeting the following criteria:
    1.  A resident* of any city, town, or municipality within the Mid-Hudson Library System Service area**
      And
    2. Does not already have a Patron Record in the Sierra patron
  2. Non-Resident Patrons: Anyone not eligible for a patron account as a System Resident may be issued a non-resident patron account by any MHLS library based on local policies, including fees and borrowing.  The decision to honor non-resident patron accounts is at the discretion of the circulating library.
    ~DA Approved 2/19/2020
  3. Institution accounts may be issued by any MHLS library based on local policies, including fees and
    borrowing. The decision to honor institution accounts is at the discretion of the circulating library.
    ~DA Approved 6/9/2021
  4. Proof of Residency: The issuing library shall require proof of name and address when creating or verifying a patron record.

    *Resident as defined by Commissioner’s Regulations 90.3 (5) Resident borrower means an individual who resides within the boundaries of the chartered service area of a public or association or “Indian library” as defined in section 253 of the Education law and who is a library cardholder at that library.
    **link to service area map (DLD)

  5. Global Deletion of Expired Patrons: MHLS staff will annually delete patron records that have expired for more than 3 years, and have fines less than $10, or fines $10 or more that are older than than 7 years. ~Approved by Directors Association 9/16/22 to begin in 2023 deletion cycle 

Procedures:

  1. Before issuing a card, first make sure that the patron does not have an existing record. The surest way of determining this is by checking for a duplicate APATID. In the Sierra checkout function, enter “u” then the APATID into the search field and press enter. 
  2. If a record already exists, verify that the record is up-to-date, complete and accurate.  A new barcode can be inserted to replace a lost card or number.
  3. If the patron does not have a record, create a new patron record.
  4. In the Sierra checkout function, click on the New icon. Accurately fill in all the required fields.
  5. If the patron resides in another library’s service area, enter the Sierra record with the correct Ptype, Home Library and Town Code, as described below.  The registration form or a screen capture of the Sierra record shall be sent to the Home Library by email or through the MHLS delivery.

The following fields must be accurately completed in all patron records:

Fixed Length Fields: Ptypetown codehome libraryzipexpiration datebirth date Variable Length Fields: barcodenamemailing address, (street address if different from mailing), phone or emailAPATIDentered by

Required fields appear in bold below.

EXP DATE: Check your library’s policy. At most libraries choose a date 3 years from today’s date.

GENDER: m for Male or f for Female or n for Not-specified

BIRTHDECADE: The decade in which the patron was born.

BIRTH DATE: Actual birth date. DD-MM-YYYY
For institutional cards use 01-09-1919

TOWN CODE: The municipality where the patron resides.

HOME LIBR (This is a 3 letter code-Do not use the 4 item location codes!): The library in whose area of service the patron resides is the home library. For non-residents the issuing library is the home library. When issuing library cards to residents of unserved areas of the Mid-Hudson Library System, home library is the issuing library.
For Institutional cards use issuing library.

P TYPE: The Patron’s Ptype will match the home library. When issuing a non-resident card the P-type is 3 non-resident. Note: For non-resident, the issuing library shall designate themselves as the home library when creating patron records for individuals who do not reside within the Mid-Hudson Library System’s service area. The issuing library will include a Message field in the patron record that includes the date and a statement of the amount paid for the non-resident membership and the library location collected.
Example: Issued 12/12/2017, Non-resident membership fee of $25 collected at KHK.
For Institutional cards use issuing library.

NOTICE PREFERENCE: To establish the desired way of ILS contact for patron.

Note: Notice preference is used for ILS notification.  Unless specified, default order is Email, then Phone, then Print.  See the notification flow chart for more details.

NAME: Last Name, First Name Middle Initial.
Example: Smith, Jane E. Do not use other titles like Dr. Junior etc. If you wish, they can be put in the notes field.
For institutions use name of the institution without punctuation. Example: Bliss Nursing Home

MAILING ADDRESS (a address): When typing addresses please use the proper postal abbreviations.
Example: 103 Market ST, Poughkeepsie NY 12601

STREET ADDRESS (h address): Required if different from the mailing address.

TELEPHONE: Use the area code and type as shown: 555-555-5555

EMAIL: A single and properly constructed email address, including an “@” and a “.” STAT CLASS: This statistical field is unused and can be defined separately by each library.

APATID: First 4 letters of the Patron’s Last Name (if last name does not have 4 letters insert an “*” for each missing letter), followed by the first letter of their first name and then the single digit of their birth month followed by the two digits to indicate the day of the month. For October use the Letter O, for November use the letter N and For December use the letter D. The APATID IS TYPED IN UPPER CASE. This field is necessary to check for duplicate records.

Example: Smith, John, born 7/04/1976 APATID = SMITJ704
NOTE: To search by APATID, type the letter “u” before the APATID in the search box type “uSMITJ704” , and press enter.

For institutions use the first four letters of institution name followed by *INS. Example: BLIS*INS 

BARCODE: Type or scan the patron card barcode number. Do not add spaces.

MESSAGE (Required only for Non-Resident): a message that pops up each time the record is accessed.  Used to alert staff of immediate circumstances.  When entering a non-resident card the Message field must be edited to include the date the card was issued, any membership fee that was collected, and the library 3 letter location code.

Example: Issued 12/12/2017, Non-resident membership fee of $25 collected at KHK.

ENTERED BY: Three letter library code followed by a hyphen and staff initials and the date. This field is also added and completed, when verifying a record that has been created using Online Patron Registration.

Example: adr-ls 01/22/2019

NOTE: Use this field to put in any information that you may wish to maintain in the patron record.  This field does not pop-up when entering the record.

PIN: When it is entered it is displayed in an encrypted format that cannot be read. A PIN (Personal Identification Number) must be between 4 and eight characters long, contain both letters and numbers if possible, and not have any repeating patterns of characters. To reset a PIN delete characters in the field.

INTERNET: Used for local internet policy. Can be used to instruct public computing management software or parental permission has been signed for youth cards.

E-CONTACT:  Permission for the library to contact the patron via email in addition to ILS notices.    Enter either “y”, “yes”, “n”, or “no”

GUARDIAN: an optional field that can be used to indicate a guardian in the case of a minor.  The name is entered in the same format as the name (Last name, First name) Example: Smith, John

Required for Institutions – Enter the name of the contact person for the institution. Example: Doe, John

E-CONTACT: If the patron did NOT check the box on the library card application opting out of email contact, then enter Y in this field. If the patron DID check the box opting out of email contact, then enter N in this field. This field indicates whether a patron has agreed to be contacted for library promotions.

Note for Non-Resident The issuing library shall designate itself as the home library when creating patron records for individuals who do not reside within the Mid-Hudson Library System’s service area. The issuing library will include a Message field in the patron record that includes the date and a statement of the amount paid for the non-resident membership and the library location collected. Example: Issued 12/12/2017, Non-Resident membership fee of $25 collected at KHK

Alias: An alternate name that can be used for patrons who prefer to use something other than their legal name.  This field is free text and will be treated as a single phrase.  The Alias can be used in custom notices at the library’s discretion.
~DA Approved 11/12/2020, updates approve 6/9/2021

Examples:
Madonna
Joey Ramone
Snoop Dog

Remote/Patron Self-Registration

Policy:

Staff shall review records that have been created online within 30 days for accuracy and duplicate records. The record will be considered temporary until verified by staff.  Records that have not been verified to meet previously stated registration policy or merged with an existing record within 30 days will be expired.

A verified record must include the library code and initials of who verified it and the date of verification.

Procedure:

Review: Libraries with online registration will review all patron records created through their form within 30 days to determine that someone is eligible. Staff completely and accurately fills in all required fields and checks Sierra to determine if a record already exists. Staff verifies home library and notifies home library when appropriate. Follow local procedure to issue a 14 – digit barcode.

Circulation

Policies:

  1. Verified Card Required
    1. Circulation requires a Verified library card, the only exception being a photo ID with an address that matches the one in ILS ~ Approved by Directors Association 10/3/2011
    2. This language requires the identification to be presented on checkout of materials. ~Clarifying language added by Resource Sharing Committee 11/17/2016
    3. Verified Library Account – Borrowing physical materials requires a verified library account.  Libraries assume the financial responsibility of all transactions completed at their libraries when in violation of Resource Sharing Standards.~ Approved by Directors Association 11/6/19
  2. Claims Returned
    1. The decision to apply the “claims return” process is determined by the owning location.
    2. A library may not place a “claims returned” on any item that they do not own.
    3. The number in the “claims returned” field in the patron record may be reduced by MHLS if a “claims returned” is located. The request for the reduction must come from the owning location and be submitted through the ticket system to MHLS. ~DA Approved 6/9/2021
  3. Lost Materials
    1. The Replacement cost of an item will be the cost listed in the item record. If the library wishes to recover processing fees, those fees must be included in the item’s price. Replacement fees are forwarded to the owning library.
    2. If a patron offers to replace the missing or damaged item with a replacement copy at a library other than the owning library, that library must contact the owning library to see if they will accept a replacement copy. It must not be assumed that this is acceptable. Replacement copies must be forwarded to the owning agency.
    3. Material was lost, paid for, and then found:
      This situation is a local issue on whether the policy of the library is to accept the return of the lost item or not, or refund the money paid back to the patron or not. This also includes items paid for through commerce. ~Approved by Directors Association 1/7/09
  4. Fines & Fees
    A. Fines
        1. If $10 or more in Overdue Fines, Overdue Renewals or Manual Charges is collected on behalf of any one
          library in a single payment transaction per patron record, payment must be sent to the library owed. -Approved by Directors Association 9/15/22
        2. Libraries should not waive fines on items checked out at other libraries except during the formally declared period of the amnesty. In that period, overdue and overdue renewal fines may be waived on returned items. -Approved by the Directors Association 9/15/22
          Procedure: The library director will email techsupport@midhudson.org, and the amnesty will be published in the MHLS notices.  ~Approved by Directors Association 9/15/22
        3. All libraries in the Mid-Hudson Library System, including fine free libraries, may collect fines that have accrued from transactions that have taken place in other member libraries. ~Approved by Directors Association 6/14/22
    1. Fees / Manual Charges
        1. Replacement, Adjustment, and Lost items payments collected must be sent to the owning library, regardless of the amount collected.
        2. Manual charges shall be forwarded to the originating library regardless of the amount. (Some examples include: fax fees, copy fees, fees for missing barcodes, and fees for a missing case.)
        3. Collection Agency Fees must be paid in full – no partial payments. -Approved by Directors Association 3/5/2011
  5. Checkout
    1. Libraries are responsible for checking out items to patron accounts that are valid and in good standing according to the Verified Account Policy ~Approved by Directors Association 11/06/2019
    2. Libraries checking out items are responsible for verifying that the materials being checked out match the information displayed in Sierra and are in acceptable circulating condition. ~Approved by Directors Association 2/18/2021
  6. Renewing An Item
    1. The library determines the loan rules for items checked out at their location, allowing up to two renewals per item.
    2. A library may override the renewal limit on their items only.
    3. Items can be renewed if the number of available copies in the system exceeds the number of open holds.  DA Approved 11/16/1
  7. Check in
    1.  An item checked in is considered accepted by the library that checks it in; at which point the library assumes responsibility for the condition. Financial responsibility does not extend to items whose damage cannot be determined visually, upon a cursory inspection.
    2. The check-in library must comply with all of the item’s pop-up messages entered by the owning library.  ~DA Approved 11/16/19
  8. Checking In Items With Damaged Part(s)
    1. Owning library must indicate the number of parts in the item – in M-message field of the item record. Without this indication, missing pieces will be the responsibility of the owning library. An item checked in is considered accepted by the library that checks it in, and the library assumes responsibility for the condition. ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 11/11/06
    2.  
    3. It is the financial responsibility of the library, at check in and check out, to make sure all pieces are included. This does not require removing components.
    4. The library that is checking in the item needs to make the first attempt to recover the missing parts by a phone call to the patron within 48 hours. The library that is checking in the item over their desk from the delivery box will call the last patron, regardless of whose patron it is, within 48 hours. ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 11/1/06
  9. Indicating damage to an item
    1. Permanently attached notes (including tape and stickers) may only be placed on an item by the owning library.
    2. Post-its and small notes may no longer be used to indicate damage to an item. ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 9/10/21.
    3. Replace the use of post-it notes with an m- message in the item record to indicate damage to an item. The message should be added by the library that notices the damage.
      The recommended form of the message is:
      Damage noted at Adriance: page 32 torn top right corner adr-LS 08/05/2021
      ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 9/10/2021
  10. Damage beyond circulation
    1. No items should fill holds or continue to circulate if any of the following conditions exist:
        • Incomplete or damaged beyond use of primary content
        • Loss of original structural integrity
        • Contamination (e.g. mold, bugs, etc.)
        • Note: Items with reasonable wear or minimal damage can be used to fill holds and circulate.
          Procedure: For items received in delivery that are too damaged to circulate:

                1. Do not check the item in
                2. Change the itype to “no holds”
                3. In Search/Holds search by the item barcode retrieve the record
                4. Select the Item Hold Tab
                5. Select the hold from the list and click the Transfer Holds button
                6. Transfer the 1 hold from i######## to b########, which will be the first record listed in the dropdown selection.
                7. Add m-Message to the item record describing the location and extent of the damage. Must initial and include date.
                8. Check in to return to the owning library
                9. If the owning library chooses to circulate the damaged item after review, it must add an “M-Message” into the item record, noting the damage (see example).

      Example Message
      m-Message format example: Damage noted at Pawling; DO NOT CIRCULATE! – pages missing PAWFR 10/25/21
      ~Amendment Approved by Directors Association 11/16/2020 

  11. Overrides / Stops / Change Of Due Date
    Only directors or their designated representative(s) can override messages, to prevent abuse. The director is responsible for all overriding done at the library. ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 12/7/07.

      1. Loans can be extended on your own materials. For materials that your library does not own, loans can be renewed for up to two loan periods as long as there is no demand for the item. ~Approved by Directors Association 12/2/2016
      2. An override of a hold is required when a patron presents an item for checkout where a hold exists. Staff must choose “proceed with checkout” when presented with an item that attempts to trap for a hold, regardless of whom the hold is for.< ~Approved by Directors Association 2/6/13.
  12. Book Club Request Form
      1. When contacting libraries to process holds intended for a book club, the Book Club Request Form shall be used. (Currently Located Here)~Approved by Directors Association 3/5/15.
  13.  Special Collections
      1. Special collections, such as equipment, exclusive subscription services, and museum passes, may be excluded from the holds system, and checkout and checkin in of such items may only be done at the owning library or by the library’s residents. Pilot or experimental collections may be non-requestable during a defined test period.
  14. Loan Rules
      1. No system loan rule may allow more than 2 renewals.~Approved by Directors Association 12/2/16.
      2. A library may not place a claims returned on any items that they do not own.  A patron account with three items marked as claims returned will automatically be permanently blocked from circulation system wide.
      3. Do a visual check before check-in. If books are damaged, AV components are broken, or if the item is missing pieces or damaged beyond normal wear and tear, do NOT check the item in. See Missing Components Procedure~Update Approved by Directors Association 2/18/2021.
      4. Do a visual check before check-in. If books are damaged, AV components are broken, or if the item is missing pieces or damaged beyond normal wear and tear, do NOT check the item in. See Missing Components Procedure~Update Approved by Directors Association 2/18/2021.

Printing Notices

Procedures:

  1. Title level pages and item level pages should be printed and filled at least once daily.
  2. Holds pick up notices should be printed at least once daily.
  3. Overdue and Billed Notices should be printed at least once a week, but it is recommended to print them daily to maintain consistency for patrons.

Holds

Policies:

  1. Bibliographic and Item Level Holds
    1. Libraries should use bibliographic level holds (hold copy returned soonest) and not item level holds for faster service, except where volumes exist. ~Approved by Directors Association 3/26/06.
  2. Limits on System Hold
    1. In the OPAC, the patron is limited to placing 50 holds. A library staff member can override this on a case-by-case basis. ~Approved by Directors Association 1/5/2012.
  3. Awaiting pickup
    1. Items remain in “awaiting pickup” status for no longer than 7 business days (open days for individual libraries).
  4. Rerouting Holds after put In Transit
    1. Items that are in transit to fill a hold cannot be rerouted. Only exception is when patron has made an error in choosing their pickup agency.
  5. Multiple Holds on Bib Record: 
    1. Only one hold can be placed by or for a patron on any single Bibliographic record unless that patron is administering a book discussion. For book discussions the override option can be used.

Copies/Holds & Local Copies

Policies:

  1.  Copies to Holds
    1. For each 4-7 holds; 2 copies for 8-14; 3 copies for 15-23 holds to be picked up at their location or downloaded to their patrons. These minimum purchases apply to all formats (physical and e-content). ~Approved by Directors Association 2/9/2023.
  2. Local Holds
    1. Local Hold items and Local Browse copies can be added only after a first copy is purchased to be made available system-wide. All physical items for which there is not already an exception in the MHLS Direct Access Plan, regardless of hold status, must be made available to any MHLS card holder on site.  ~Approved by Directors Association 1/8/13 & updated 2/9/2023, updated 6/13/2023
    2. Items added to the catalog as Local Holds need to be identified in the call number field. Items will use system-defined item types. ~Approved by Directors Association 1/5/2012.P

OverDrive Spending

Policies:

  1. OverDrive Spending for each library must be in line with the recommendations of the OverDrive Ad Hoc committee.
  2. The OverDrive Ad Hoc committee establishes the timing and process to report to and review member library spending levels.
    • The schedule for reporting = April and November
    • The criteria for spending level requirements are:library spending/system spending >= library circ/system circ as described in the Ad Hoc OverDrive Committee’s Final Report

Notes:

      • Cost Per Circ purchasing is used once the library has demonstrated that it is purchasing in line with recommended spending requirements (OverDrive Ad hoc committee recommendation) or has met requirements of section 1 A.

Exceptions:

        1. Local only demand
        2. Book club
        3. Local author
        4. Low/no system wide demand title to create available copy at low cost)
          Approved by Directors Association 6/13/2023.
      • Cost Per Circ spending on any platform is not credited to spending requirements set forth by the Ad Hoc committee and approved by the DA.

Inter Library Loan (ILL)

Policies: 

  1. ILL Loan periods
    1. Be aware that any hold being sent to ‘PATRN NAME: Mid-Hudson Library System-ILL-OCLC/ILL’ is an out of area request, which will have an extended loan period in accordance with regional ILL lending procedures.
  2. OCLC ILLs
    1. Any hold for ‘Mid Hudson Library System ILL-OCLC’ is an out of area request and will have an extended loan period in accordance with regional ILL lending procedures.
    2. When an item that has been filled via OCLC by MHLS Ill Department becomes overdue, it is the prerogative of the owning/loaning library to determine whether or not to grant a renewal. It is the responsibility of the requesting library to notify MHLS ILL Department that a renewal is needed, before the due date. Items that become overdue may affect the ability of other MHLS libraries to borrow through OCLC.
    3. MHLS will bill each library for each OCLC loan filled for their patrons. It is acceptable that libraries who are not passing the fee on to their own patrons, to charge patrons from other libraries for the service.  As of September 1, 2007 this fee was suspended.
  3. Processing ALA form ILL requests for agencies outside of the MHLS or SEAL membership
    1. If you receive an ALA request form from a library outside of the MHLS or Seal Membership you can either ship the item at your own expense or contact the requesting agency and ask that the request be placed as an OCLC request, which will be processed by the MHLS ILL Department.  ~Approved section by Directors Association 2/5/09

Delivery

Policies:

  1. Delivery Procedures and Packaging Standards
    1. The Directors Association has approved Delivery Procedures & Packaging Standards . Libraries are expected to follow the delivery procedures that are described in the document. Items damaged in delivery using other, non-standard packaging will be the responsibility of the owning library.  ~Approved by Directors Association 2/5/09

Procedures:

  1. Process Routing Slip
    1. You must use the MHLS default transit template in ILS or use the MHLS standard print copy , which you can reproduce on two sides.
    2. The delivery location must be printed in a large format at the top of the delivery slip and secured in the item. Do not use the location’s 3 letter code.~Amendment approved by Directors Association 2/7/07.
    3. When using two-sided routing slips, make sure the library name is crossed-off on the used side. 
    4. Do not include patron personal information (ex: phone number).

Offline Circulation – OCIRC

Offline client may be used for checkout only, including items from other libraries.  Materials from other libraries are checked out at the financial risk of the check-out library. ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 10/4/13

1.     Offline Circulation Client Software

A. All libraries must have an up-to-date copy of the offline circulation client installed.

B. Currently, it should be used for only offline checkout (not check-in or patron entry).

Acquisitions & Collection Development

1.     Copies to Holds recommended purchasing

A. Libraries should own 1 holdable copy for each 4-7 holds; 2 copies for 8-14; 3 copies for 15-23 holds to be picked up at their location. These minimum purchases also apply to audiovisual material. In the case of DVD’s, holds are considered by title not format (wide screen or full screen)

2.     Circulation of items missing parts

A.Items missing parts should not be used to fill holds, but may be retained in a library’s circulating collection. The item’s itype should be set to -no holds and the call number should include “Missing Parts-No Requests”. An item with an integral part, or something that would change the borrowers core experience, should be considered to be missing parts. ~Approved by Directors Association 3/5/11

3.     Order Records

A. Members should delete order records of items that have been canceled, so as to not create bib records, or transfer carts for items that will never be brought into the system.

B. Order records will be removed and holds deleted if the order date is more than one year old, and funds are not encumbered.

Data Entry

1.     Circulation of Multi-part items (books-on-tape, videos, etc.)

A. Owning library must indicate the number of parts in the item in a pop-up item message or with a label by the barcode, such as “check for 6 tapes” or “check for 1 book and 1 tape”.~ Approved by Directors Association 3/26/06

B. Owning library must indicate the number of parts in the item in message or with a label by the barcode, such as “check for 6 tapes” or “check for 1 book and 1 tape.”

C. Multi-part items owned by the library must be labeled with the library name. ~Approved Directors Association 5/2/06

2.     Guidelines for multi-volume records

A. items that come in seasons must stay together.

B. Motion pictures and other boxed releases with separate original release dates and separate titles can have separate bib records. Exception: If it comes as a boxed set, you have the option to catalog as a set with a separate bib record for the set or break it up with a separate bib record for each item.

C. All multi-disk DVD series shall be cataloged with the itype of Long Loan DVD with the exception of high-demand items with greater than a 5-1 hold ratio. Approved by DA 6/2/2016

3.     Inaccuracies in the catalog

A. Should be reported to MHLS Cataloging & Database Maintenance Department by e-mail (cataloging@midhudson.org) or phone (845-471-6060 x221).

4.     Wording for Items that are No-Holds

A. For Items that will not be available for holds call number should read “LOCAL HOLDS ” ~ Wording updated by Directors Association 1/5/12

5.     Barcode Placement

A. Barcodes may not be placed over a title, and must be in a visible place (i.e. not underneath the item)

B. A scanable Barcode must be affixed to all circulating materials. ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 9/3/08

6.     Identifying Label

A. All circulating library materials must be marked on the exterior identifying the items as a library material (spine label, stamp, etc.). Approved by Directors Association 10/3/11

7.    Uncorrected Proofs, Bootleg, Unauthorized Materials, or restricted use materials

A. Uncorrected proofs and screening copies are not permitted in the shared catalog because they are not in their release form, are not intended to be distributed to the public, and carry the same ISBN as their trade counterparts. Updated 6/13/2023.
B. Bootleg and unauthorized material are not permitted in the shared catalog.

Collection Agencies

1.  Collection Agency Notices

Libraries interested in sending accounts to collection need to create their own notice to send to patrons to warn them before collection. Note that any patron in the system could get a collection notice from one of the few libraries that would initiate this for the fees/fines owed to those libraries working with collection agencies. Clarifying reorganization made 1/27/2016 by Resource Sharing Committee

 Management & Reports

  1. Managing ILS user access
    1. Directors or their designees are the only people who can request new user accounts or edits to current user accounts in the shared ILS and related platforms. A designee may be identified by the Director in writing to the Technology Operations Manager of MHLS.
    2. Sierra passwords need to be changed regularly, at least every six months
    3. Logins shall be removed when you have had a staff member leave your employment.
    4. Logins will begin with the library 3 letter code.
    5. Each library will maintain at least 3 sets of initials and passwords for ILS. The logins will have staggered levels of authority.  A higher level will include the ability to override renewals and claim items returned. Only directors or those designated by the director may have access to this level. ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 12/7/07
    6. Each Sierra user should have an individual username and password. ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 8/7/12.
    7. Group Logins may only have such permissions as designated and periodically reviewed by the Resource Sharing Committee and viewed in Appendix A.  ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 9/10/14. Reviewed 1/27/22
    8. Group login passwords are changed upon the departure of any individual with access to the login.  ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 9/10/14.
    9. Any change to the ILS that facilitates rapid and effective switching of users shall prompt the immediate discontinuation of group logins.  ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 9/10/14.
    10. Any loss, damage or issue arising from access to the ILS  and related platforms, shall be the liability of the library.  ~Amendment approved by Directors Association 9/10/14.
      Section revised Directors Association 02/3/2022

2.     Create Lists

A. Clearing out review files

1. All review files should be cleared out when finished.
2. Any Review Files and Web Management reports that are older than 30 days will be deleted.

Approved policy for violation of Resource Sharing Standards.
~Approved by Directors Association 2/5/09. Approved Revisions 12/2014.

 

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Materials Booking and Your Patrons

Once you have identified and made your items bookable, you now need to book ’em!  Materials booking will be introduced as a staff-assisted process for the immediate future, however in time we may make it available to patrons in the catalog.  

The Booking function will need to be turned on for your library, and staff will need to have certain authorizations. Once everything is in place, you will see a Materials Booking tab in both patron and item records. Like holds, you can place a booking from the patron record or the item record. Our materials will be booked at the item level.  

Checking out booked items is done the same way as regular circulating items, from the patron record in Circulation Desk mode. The default checkout period defined in the loan rule will be applied, but you may change it. Booked items go directly to billed status on the day after they are due and the price in the item is used for the billing amount.

When an item has a booking (either current or in the future), you will see that information pop-up whenever the item is scanned.

Add a booking from a patron record

  1. Select the Bookings tab.
  2. Select Add Booking.
  3. Search to find the item you wish to book.
  4. Choose Book Selected Item(s).

Add a booking from the item

  1. Search for the item to book.
  2. Make sure the view is in Holds/Bookings mode.
  3. Select the item that you want to book.
  4. Select the Bookings tab.
  5. Click Book Selected Item(s).
  6. Scan your patron’s barcode or search for them by name.

In the patron’s account, go to the Bookings tab and click Add Booking.

Locate your bookable item.

Select the item(s) and choose Book Selected Item(s).

Fill out the booking information (see below).

In the Summary tab, make sure the view is Holds/Bookings. Go to the Bookings tab and select Book Selected Item(s).

Search for the patron and continue to filling out the booking information.

Completing the booking information

Event name (optional): If the booking is going to be recurring or involve more than one item, enter an event name. This will help you to manage groupings, locate bookings, and for statistical purposes.
Example: Summer Reading

Dates (wanted from and to): The range that the booking is needed for. The Wanted To date will be defined by default once you pick a start date, but you may edit it.

Repeat Booking (optional): if your booking will repeat, it can be set up in advance.

Booking Note (optional): This is a local note to be used internally or to provide information verbally to the patron.

Pickup Location: Add your library as the pickup location (3 letter code). Right now, booking is limited to your stuff being picked up at your location.

Fulfilling a Booking

Similar to filling holds, you should look to see what you have booked that needs to be readied for pick up. Daily, under Bookings Maintenance, you should run a list of items for that day and the next (or you can edit that range). Print the slips for the selected items. They should be made ready for pickup and placed on the holdshelf or in your specified place.

Cancelled and expired bookings can be removed from the shelf.

Check the item out to the patron like you would any item. The default checkout period defined in the loan rule will be applied, but you may change it.