The contract has been signed with Ex Libris to deliver its cloud-based library services platform (LSP) to all California community colleges that opt in. This fall, a group of approximately ten “vanguard” colleges will participate in a trial run of data migration and creation of a functional work environment. The experiences of these colleges will inform the migration and implementation project undertaken by all participating colleges in a single phase, beginning in January, 2019. The project will be broken into numerous discrete steps with check-ins throughout. Ex Libris representatives will work closely with library staff at each college to assure the smoothest possible transition. The systemwide go-live date will occur over a period of 4-5 weeks, beginning in December 2019 and finishing in January 2020.
The architecture of this LSP allows for a shared network zone as well as spaces for independent library or institution work. Alma, the staff side of the LSP, promises streamlined work flows and a high degree of integration with Primo, the discovery layer. The network zone allows for shared bibliographic records and significant potentials for resource sharing and more informed collection development. The design of the network zone makes it far simpler and easier to have all participating colleges migrate and implement at the same time, rather than staggering this process in cohorts.
In order to finalize the work plan and meet our contractual obligation for this project, a commitment from each participating college will be required no later than October 31st. Participation agreements will be available and distributed to each college within the next two weeks. LSP project staff is available to meet with your college to provide an overview of the project and answer specific questions pertaining to individual schools. Email Amy Beadle (firstname.lastname@example.org) to set up an online or in-person meeting.
The LSP Task Force, including representatives from the Council of Chief Librarians, the Chancellor’s office, and the CCC Technology Center have met with Ex Libris to advise on migration and implementation planning. In addition, the task force has proposed a plan for work groups—community college librarians throughout the state—to create policies, identify professional learning needs, and advise the field in core functional areas such as system administration, cataloging, discovery, acquisitions, and circulation.
Mark your calendars for online Alma and Primo demonstrations at 1:00 p.m. on September 12th and 13th. The Ex Libris team will lead the demonstrations and will allow plenty of time for Q&A. LSP leadership will provide a brief project update on those webinars as well. September 12th will include a focus on Primo, while the 13th will focus on Alma.
A world of collaborative possibilities awaits us. As a librarian at a fairly small college that operates on a 20+ year-old ILS platform, I’m excited for this process to begin and look forward to deepening our working relationships with other community college libraries across the state. Thanks to the dedicated work of the CCC Technology Center, the support of the Chancellor's office, and the ongoing work of task force members in making this happen.