Over the years, we have had many reports from faculty and from library staff that they are often confused or frustrated by our two separate IUCAT request workflows:
- Request Delivery: a Sirsi process which handles requests at the bibliographic record level; and
- ALF Delivery: which is managed by the ALF inventory system and must, because of the nature of large-scale offsite storage, handle requests on an item level.
For some time it has seemed as if “never the twain should meet” … but no longer!
We are very pleased to announce that we have worked to streamline the request process in New IUCAT. Beginning on January 5, 2014, new IUCAT users will see just one button which can be used to place both Request Delivery requests and ALF Delivery requests.
The new “Request This” process will parse the items associated with the bibliographic record, and thus, will be able more intelligently route users to the appropriate request flow.
If a record has only ALF items, the user will be forwarded into the ALF Delivery flow (now redesigned to mirror the new IUCAT interface). If a record has only items that are eligible for Request Delivery, the user will be forwarded into the existing new IUCAT Request Delivery flow.
If a bibliographic record has both items that are eligible for request delivery and items eligible for ALF Delivery, upon clicking the “Request This” button, the user will be asked to choose whether they prefer Request Delivery or ALF Delivery; there is no way to automate this choice, as we cannot make assumptions about which volume someone might need, for example. Depending on what they choose, they will be routed through the standard Request Delivery or the ALF Delivery flow.
As they do currently in Classic IUCAT, the redesigned ALF Delivery screens in new IUCAT will continue to support authentication for both the IU and IPFW logins, for patron barcode, and for unaffiliated patrons.
Another great advantage of this new process will be that users with multiple accounts (proxy, office delivery account, etc) will be able to simply login using their IU or IPFW credentials and designate which of their identities they wish to request ‘as’ for ALF Delivery as they currently can for request delivery – meaning, office delivery for ALF items will be less cumbersome.
This improvement will also largely circumvent a problem where patrons might accidentally select Request Delivery for an ALF-only item, resulting in an unnecessarily long delay for certain items and certain users (Bloomington users, for example, can receive ALF items much more quickly by using the ALF Delivery process).
There will be no changes to the request process in Classic IUCAT.
Detailed help for requesting in new IUCAT and in Classic IUCAT will soon be available via the KB: At IU, how can I get materials from another IU library or the Auxiliary Library Facility?