Wednesday, November 26, 2008

From Warehouse to Our House - Part 3

How items are added to the Dick Smith Library Collection
Part 3 - Acquisitions - Receiving Items

The receiving process for new books and other items at the library is rather complex, varying depending on the way the library acquires them: through the Blackwell approval plan, departmental budgets, the library’s budget for specialty items, and standing orders.

A standing order is one the library places to receive all parts of a multi-part work as volumes are published, such as multi-volume reference works, until a publisher or vendor is notified to cancel or the multi-part work is complete. When these items come in, the library’s Primary Standing Order list is updated with the received date and item cost from the invoice. A post-it note is placed in the front of each book with ‘SO’ and the vendor, the received date, and invoice cost. The invoices then go to Acquisitions Assistant Kay Wiley for payment in the university’s Financial Accounting Management Information System (FAMIS).

Acquisitions Librarian Jodee Tennyson, and Assistant Director for Monographs and Technical Services Glenda Stone handle the Blackwell approval plan books when they come in. They check the titles against the invoice included with the books. They write the invoice number and the date received on a card provided with each book, and then place the books with the cards on shelves sorted by academic department, where the library’s liaisons to those departments (and sometimes professors from those departments) review them and decide which to keep and which to send back. Again, the invoices go to Kay for posting in an Excel worksheet. Books that are sent back to Blackwell are credited back to our account with them so the money can be spent on other approval plan books.

Items that are ordered individually, whether from academic department or library funds, are given an “R number” by FAMIS, and this number is also entered into Workflows, our integrated library system (the software that drives our circulation and catalog systems), by Jodee. Kay posts the relevant information in the appropriate account worksheet and requests that the R number be changed to a P (purchase order) number in FAMIS. All the paperwork is labeled and filed, and then Kay and her student workers wait for the books to come in.

Orders come into the University’s Central Receiving department, and then to the library where the delivery form is dated and signed. Kay and her workers unpack shipments and place them on a book truck with the shipping forms. Items are matched against the invoices and/or packing list, and the item’s paperwork is pulled from the files and updated with the received date and the item’s cost, and Workflows is updated to show that the item has been received. When the invoice is received for the items Kay then will process the invoice for payment.

A library pocket is inserted or paper-clipped to the books or audiovisual items along with relevant paperwork. Audiobooks with more than four discs are put into a vinyl binder with cloth sleeves for the CDs, and the cardboard case the audiobook came in is cut apart and inserted in the outer cover sleeve of the binder. The date received, vendor, funding source, selector (if applicable), and item cost are also written in the book's gutter across from the copyright page (or, for audiovisual items, on the library pocket that was inserted). Then the items are moved to cataloging – this step will be discussed next week.

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