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OPAL Updates and Tips

OPAL UPdate November 30, 2020

by Heidi Beke-Harrigan on 2020-11-30T15:42:00-05:00 in Consortia Manager, ROAM, Sierra, OhioLINK, Ebooks, Google, EBSCO, Membership, Statistics and Reports, Cataloging, Communities of Interest (COIs) | Comments




OPAL Will Ring in 2021 with a New Member

There will be additional cause for celebration this new year as Hiram College becomes our 26th OPAL member on January 1, 2021. Located in the historic Western Reserve region of Ohio, Hiram was founded in 1850 as a preparatory institution called the Western Reserve Eclectic Institute. James A. Garfield, the 20th president of the United States, was both a student and principal of the college. For the first 50 years, there was no common library at Hiram. Instead, student literary societies had their own members-only libraries. The current Hiram College Library opened in 1995. Recent renovations to the first floor have added a central learning environment to the campus in the form of a new Learning and Technology Collaborative which aligns with the college's Tech and Trek initiative.  

We are currently finalizing the on-boarding plan for Hiram. At present, their Sierra migration is planned to begin in March 2021. 

Introducing - Your Free ERM and Workflow Tool

OhioNET and the creators of ConsortiaManager have partnered to provide members free access to the second generation ERM and Workflow tool,! is an ERM tool that focuses on streamlining library acquisition workflows, and includes functionality that combines tasks and data previously siloed in multiple external systems. Track licenses, terms, and contracts all in one place. The powerful Prediction module enables libraries to build budget scenarios, projections, and even do cost savings analysis with the click of a button.

As a benefit of membership, OhioNET libraries will receive access to all of ROAM's current functionality for free - forever! Each member will have a customized instance of built and pre-populated with all of their subscription data from ConsortiaManager as a starting point. 

Learn more about ROAM's powerful tools and workflows through upcoming demonstrations and training opportunities. All webinars will be recorded for those unable to attend live. While these sessions are free to OhioNET members, we do ask you to register in advance via the links below: for OhioNET Members: Introduction with Tejs Grevstad for OhioNET Members: Training with Carrie Waibel

Please email any questions about or OhioNET eResources in general to

Cataloging COI Update

The Cataloging COI met in October to reconnect and discuss a variety of issues, including the longstanding problem of records missing barcodes or call numbers in Sierra. Since the problem spans years without resolution by Innovative, all of the records having index entries without a corresponding field have been cleaned up. Matt has also corrected the records that were missing either the barcode or call number field and had a barcode or call number field in the item record 945 ITEM FLD. Please let know if you encounter any new instances of this issue.  Hopefully, identifying a more precise time frame for when these problems occur will make it easier for Innovative determine the cause and provide a permanent solution. 

Meeting minutes can be found on the COI Meeting Documents page.

Gather Insights Through Google Analytics

Are you looking for insights into search behavior? Here's a reminder that we have implemented Google Analytics for a variety of OPAL properties including the OPAL Catalog, OPAL Catalog for individual institutions (within scope or all searches on campus), EBSCO and the OPAL Digital Collections.  You might want to start with the Top 10s dashboard (when available) for a summary overview and the Site Search and Events areas in the Behavior category to dig deeper. If you have a Google account, either personal or work-related, and would like access to the analytics, contact us at Google Analytics Academy provides free online courses to help you learn more about Google measurement tools.

Consumer Health Reference Center eBook Collection Loaded

It's taken a while, but the Consumer Health Reference Center eBook Collection is now available to all OhioLINK member libraries.  This is one of 7 reference eBook collections that come with OhioLINK’s subscribed EBSCO databases. The MARC records have already been loaded into the OPAL catalog for all institutions who opted into the scope for these collections last year. If you would like your patrons to be able to see and use these resources within databases and discovery searches you'll want to double check that the collection is:

- Enabled in the EBSCOadmin host profile (turn "on" in database list).

- Enabled in your EDS profile (turn "on" in database list).

- Confirm that the package is selected in Holdings Management.

Digital Resource Commons Record Deletions

In conjunction with the sunsetting process implemented by OhioLINK for collections in the Digital Resource Commons, we've removed Films for the Humanities and Sciences and Naxos Music records from the OPAL catalog.  Find additional information and updates on the OhioLINK project page for the DRC (ostaff log-in required).

OPAL Needs a New COI Liaison!

Danielle Bernert is leaving her position at CCAD and as the OPAL Communities of Interest Liaison in early December. If you're interested in exploring leadership responsibilities, this is a great opportunity to dip your toes into the water among supportive colleagues. The COI Liaison to the Executive Committee serves as a communication connector between the COIs and Executive Committee, and is elected biannually on even numbered years. Primary responsibilities include reports to the Executive Committee on issues, goals, and practices addressed by the COIs. If you are interested or would like to learn more please contact Chuck Vesei at

Emailing Receipts for Checked in Items

Members of the Circulation COI asked about the possibility of emailing receipts to patrons when items are checked-in. Yes, this is possible in Sierra. The most recent Opal Tips blog post walks you through the steps to set up this option at your institution.

Upcoming OPAL Meeting

Director's Council
December 10, 2020
10 am

PCIRC Reminder

Please update any changes to the current status of your OhioLINK courier stops and PCIRC lending during the holiday break. You can access the spreadsheet directly or via the Ostaff COVID-19 PCIRC Changes page

If you need to make changes to your courier location status, please use the Ostaff Courier Problem Report form. This will ensure Priority is alerted to any courier service changes as quickly as possible.

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