How can we improve Alma?

Add functionality to better manage queue for reserves/holds

More academic libraries are checking out high-traffic electronic items (laptops, Wi-Fi hotspots, etc.) and often have a long list of patrons with holds on these items. It would be useful if we could manage the queue for user holds/reserves more effectively. We should be able to renumber/reposition users in the queue (presently you may only bump someone up to the very top of the queue or profile a priority if users are from different user groups). We should also be able to manage the queue without having the item available; presently that is not possible. We often have 12+ users on a hold list at a time for laptops...and the users are generally all the same user category (students), so the present Alma functionality is just not helpful. If a laptop comes back and needs to be repaired, it is a big deal to manage the hold queue, so the next person in line is not bumped back to the bottom because that item needs repaired. Managing the queue should be a straightforward thing.

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C Havely shared this idea  ·   ·  Admin →

5 comments

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  • David JAKOVINCIC commented  · 

    If I understand this correctly there could be a reason why we may want to adjust a persons place in a queue for an item. I guess the reason is not important as there could be multiple reasons. 1 example might be staff requiring a book to be on restricted loan in Semester 2. However we are happy for students to borrow the item for the 2 months prior to this. So I would place a request and put myself 2nd in the queue with a Move permanently request.
    Would be a very useful feature. Currently queue manipulation is all or nothing with us using higher privileged accounts to push things to the top of the queue

  • C Havely commented  · 

    It has been two years since I submitted my original idea, and staff are still having to do manual work arounds to manage the request queues.

    Management of the queue should be straightforward. Alma should allow us to:

    Renumber the queue for physical item requests whenever needed, regardless if the item is available, on loan, etc.

    Place requests in whichever order is deemed appropriate--not limit us to only bumping a request to the top position.

    As a colleague noted in their post dated Jan. 21, 2019, the "activate" option should work when an item is on loan.

    The request queue should list the first person in the queue as 1 (one), not "zero". Zero is confusing... Ian Chan's idea for this problem was submitted Oct 25, 2016 and received 272 votes.

    Please consider voting for this idea. Thanks...

  • Anonymous commented  · 

    When viewing the request queue of an item (the number of holds users have placed on a single item) there is sometimes an 'Activate' option available. This 'Activate' options allows a specific hold to take preference over the others (it bumps it up the queue) and changes the priority to 'forced'. However, it only appears to be available when the item is yet to be picked up from the shelf or if it still on the hold shelf. When the item is on loan to a patron, none of its other holds can be activated. It would be useful if we could change this as library staff often have to recall books and if there are multiple holds on an item, we generally have to cancel each hold, place a hold on it ourselves and then re-request for the other patrons. This is time-consuming and could be fixed by allowing the 'Activate' option to work when a book is on loan.

  • C Havely commented  · 

    It would also be helpful if the 1st position in the queue is labeled as "1" instead of "0". Zero is confusing to users (and staff!) Zero usually means something is null or not present...it makes no sense that the first person in the hold queue is in the "zero" position.

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