Minutes of December 4, 2003 Meeting

Judy Gardner, Nancy Hendrickson, Rhonda Marker, Mary Page, Gracemary Smulewitz, Christopher Sterback (recorder), Bob Warwick

1. Final Updates on Unicorn 2003 testing. Chris reported on the status of Systems pre-upgrade tasks.

a. Chris loaded the 2003.0.11.0 subrelease on the test system during the Thanksgiving weekend. This subrelease fixes bugs reported by sites who have upgraded to earlier versions of U2003. For example, this subrelease fixed the garbled title glossary display reported by our testers.

b. Chris reapplied the RUL custom screen changes to Workflows. The RUL custom screen changes are 1) removing the ability to edit the created/modified by operators in the bibliographic and authority record control tabs, 2) setting the default ship field to TSB-BUDG when creating an order, and 3) increasing the size of the date/time due fields in the user and item checkouts tabs.

c. Chris confirmed that the SIRSI Helpdesk will be staffed on January 2, 2004, the tentative date chosen for the upgrade.

d. Systems still needs to test locally developed and customized reports such as 1) the script that sends daily paid invoices to Rias, 2) the pull lists used for processing RDS requests, and 3) the automatic setting of BARRED status on patrons with items that are 40 days overdue to name a few.

2. Signoff on U2003

Each LIS team member signed off on their module except for Mary Page. Mary reported that there is a critical loss of functionality when creating/modifying orders that, if not fixed, is a showstopper and will delay the date for the upgrade. Specifically Mary reported that you can no longer create or modify the orderline extended information fields. These fields store, among other things, instructions to vendors and other note fields and are critical to Acq workflow. Chris reported this problem to the SIRSI Helpdesk and stressed the importance to them of finding a solution in a timely manner. Although the tentative date for the upgrade was identified as Friday, January 2, Systems will not announce and schedule the upgrade for this date until we receive a resolution to this problem.

3. There will not be an LIS meeting in January 2004. The next LIS meeting will be held on Thursday, February 5, 2004 at 1:30 in the TSB conference room.

4. The rest of the meeting was devoted to a SIRSI webcast/webinar of a new product called Director's Station. Approximately 60 sites from around the country attended this virtual demonstration.

What is Director's Station?

"Director's station enables library executives to make informed, data-driven decisions by providing a unique, customized view of the institutions activities and operations. In a colorful and easy-to-read format, library executives will analyze trends, pinpoint problem areas, and identify opportunities. All of this powerful knowledge is just a mouse-click away on a Web browser."

Audience - library directors and managers; designed for use outside of the IT/Systems office

Design Goals - follows the BAM (Business Activity Monitoring) model; presents holistic view of business; presents data in a dashboard format; easy to use - "if you can drag and drop you can use this product"

System Requirements - runs on Dell server supporting up to 20 concurrent users; requires Microsoft Windows 2000 server

Capabilities - synchronization routines harvest data from Unicorn on a daily basis; comes with set of predefined reports; data easily imports into Excel or Powerpoint; can activate automatic alerts (i.e. notify me if a user-defined threshold is reached); ability to enter natural language queries

Benefits - uncovers trends; supports informed data driven decisions

Pricing - based on model of Unicorn system purchased and number of concurrent user licenses needed

Observations by LIS - appears to have similar capabilities as Microsoft Excel pivot tables - can add/remove data categories and create charts on-the-fly; worthwhile product with a lot of potential and possible uses; data presented and reported will only be as good as your installation configuration decisions

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