March 20, 2014

 Collaborative Technical Services Team WebEx meeting minutes
February 20, 2014

Present at the meeting were:  Team members - Beth Burnett, Bill Clayton, Bill Walsh, Cathy Jeffrey, Donna Bennett, Guy Frost, Hallie Pritchett, Jacqueline Vickers, Jeff Carrico, Miriam Nauenburg, Sherrida Crawford; Guest – Anne Barnhart.

Cathy Jeffrey welcomed everyone to the meeting. Minutes for the January 16th meeting were approved.   Cathy indicated that the minutes would be posted to the Next Gen Blog.   

Cathy indicated that the topic for discussion would be collaborative collection development.  Cathy mentioned that Anne Barnhart from the University of West Georgia had been invited to attend the meeting but seemed to be running a bit late. Anne was interested in participating in this discussion because she has experience with collaborative collection development.   Anne came to Georgia from the University of California.  Cathy began the discussion by sharing some suggestions that Anne had forwarded via e-mail.  Cathy shared Anne’s description of using the Gobetween feature of YBP’s Gobi ordering platform to view on order titles of other institutions.  Cathy asked if anyone was using YBP for orders.  Some were and some were not.  Cathy speculated that there could be some resistance to requiring the use of a single vendor.  Bill Clayton asked what would be the advantage.  Cathy stated that it would allow you to see the approval plan titles, firm orders and other acquisition details.  Otherwise there could be a lag between the time that a title was ordered and the time that it was entered into the catalog.  Cathy said that another option would be to display order records to the public.  Bill C. asked if the purpose of this would be to limit the number of copies purchased by the consortia. Guy Frost and Cathy agreed. Cathy stated that it could not apply to everything – probably only circulating collections.  She wondered how RACL would respond to the suggestion that they should accept a limit to the number of copies of a title held in the circulating collections of the consortia but that the purpose of collaborative collection development would be for all of us to use our funds more wisely and not all buy the same titles so that ideally our students would have access to more unique titles through GIL Express.  Bill C. stated that Orbis does this to a high degree.  Donna Bennett suggested that in new systems we would be able to see each other’s order information.  Bill C. agreed that would be possible.  Donna thought that a drawback could be the turn around time required for delivery from one institution to another.  Bill C. stated that we had not managed to have 24 hour turn around before we tried to reduce costs for GIL Express deliver and did not believe that we could count on that being easily done.  Sherida Crawford also thought that the ease of interface would be an issue that needed to be resolved.  As an example she mentioned that we had been promised a one click option to resubmit a search from a local catalog to the universal catalog and that had never happened.  Currently a separate search of the universal catalog is required.  Sherida felt that hints on the screen help but if we are going to rely on copies at other institutions there needs to be an easy way for students to know that this service is available.

Cathy asked the group how they felt about collaborative collection development in general and wondered if the rest of the group felt it was worth pursuing.  Bill C. asked if Cathy meant having a limit to the number of copies purchased.  She agreed that it could be that or that it could be having some institutions focusing on collection development in a particular area to create collections that are specialized.  Bill C. thought that it would be worth pursuing as did Hallie who suggested that government documents might be another area for collaboration that would help the depositories as well as the rest of the consortia.  Hallie went on to comment that the issue of electronic content going into a shared database needs to be addressed as it relates to collection development.  

Cathy asked how the group thought we should proceed with work on this topic.  Guy commented that he did not believe we should spend a lot of time developing an idea that RACL was not interested in implementing.  He suggested that we should seek guidance from RACL and then develop the idea more fully once it was approved.  Bill C. stated that we would have to have a flushed out idea to share with them.  Guy agreed.  Bill stated that it did not need to be a fully developed plan.  Hallie wondered if it would depend on whether we went with a shared database option or not.  Bill C. thought that a shared database would affect the ease with which collaborative collection development could be accomplished but would not affect the ability to collaborate.  Hallie agreed but wondered if some of the rfp recommendations would work better with a shared database. Bill C. said that is one of the questions we would need to ask about the systems.  If there are things that we want to be able to do to work more efficiently then the question is how can systems can accommodate these goals and what database structure is needed for us to benefit from the systems capabilities.  Cathy said that collection development could be low tech and could be accomplished with our current system.  Bill C. agreed that new technology would not be required to move forward with some level of this idea.  Sherida commented that she had been using the UC in her ordering process.  She wonders how this would help us stretch our materials budget.  She is already depending on the larger universities to collect the more expensive science books that can be shared through GIL Express.  Bill C. said it is hard to know but that there are certain titles for which the system owns 15-16 copies.  We could save on those but he could not say how much.  Cathy commented that it would formalize what Sherida was already doing voluntarily.  Sherida commented that she was only using the UC for certain types of materials and considered the fact that one of the larger institutions owned a title became a recommendation to purchase it rather than a reason not to do so.  Bill C. said that he doubted that anyone was using the UC as a tool to determine whether a book was needed or not.  Sherida went on to discuss using peer comparisons to help build a better collection on selected topics.  

Jeff Carrico said that Tech uses the UC to determine not only what should be ordered but what should be retained.  If they have a weeding project or are considering moving something to storage, the availability of other copies elsewhere helps make the decision to withdraw a title.  Cathy said that a first step could be to simply encourage USG institutions to use the UC when making collection decisions whether it is ordering new titles or withdrawing older ones.  Bill C. said that may be what the limit would do for us.  “Could” doesn’t promote using the UC.  A limit would force people to check.  Cathy asked what the limit should be.  Bill C. said that he thinks Orbis uses four copies as the limit.  He doubts that it would be more than five copies.  Bill C. agreed that this limit would be for the circulating collection and that there would always be exceptions.  Sherida brought up the question of e-books.  She said that many times she has found that others hold the e-book title which would not be available to her students in any case. Sherida commented that going forward we would probably all be buying less hardcopy titles.  That would make 4-5 print copies of most titles enough for the system to share.

Cathy interrupted the discussion to introduce Anne Barnhart who was joining the group as a guest.  Cathy asked Anne to take a few minutes to describe her interest in and experience with collaborative collection development.  Anne’s experience includes not only collaborative collection development but also collaborative collection maintenance which would include the use of storage facilities and weeding projects.  Anne described how the University of California libraries used YBP’s Gobi system to assist with collaborative collection development.  The University of California libraries also used bibliographer groups which would meet at least once a year to discuss how they would share collection responsibilities.

Cathy thanked Anne for joining the meeting stating that the group could benefit from hearing from someone with firsthand experience with collaborative collection development since the system was considering adding it.  Anne stated that in her opinion it would not be appropriate to include all institutions.   She suggested that schools of the same type might want to work together or that as a first step schools with similar programs could work together.  Anne also said that using YBP was very helpful.  Anne stated that West Georgia was currently using a different vendor and did not know how much resistance there would be to the idea of switching vendors or if other vendors offered similar services.  Cathy stated that Clayton State uses Baker and Taylor and that she had asked the B&T representative if something similar to the Gobetween services was available from Baker and Taylor and that she had been told that it was not.  The group discussed YBP and Baker & Taylor for several minutes.

Bill C. asked Anne to discuss how the University of California librarians used the shared ordering information from YBP specifically whether it was used simply to limit the number of copies ordered.  Anne described strategies that she used to determine if a copy should be purchased including subject specialties, geographic distribution of existing copies and how they might or might not be retained in University of California storage facilities in the future.
Bill C. asked Anne as a relatively new USG librarian what she thought would be beneficial in terms of collection development that we might establish as a consortia.  Anne stated that we might do some collection maintenance as a consortia.  In particular she felt that a shared storage facility would be an obvious addition for the system.  She stated that a shared storage facility is not a new idea and that faculty from other states would be surprised that we don’t already have one.  Anne felt that shared storage would allow us to be weeding more thoughtfully and prevent the loss of titles because of lack of communication.  She felt that another first step could be for librarians at institutions with graduate programs to get together and begin a discussion or what subjects would be emphasized so that our collections to support graduate programs could compliment each other with more unique titles rather than duplicate the same materials.  Anne also described using vendors to craft approval plans for members of the consortia that would reduce duplication – provided that a single vendor could provide this service and would be accepted by all parties.

Anne used University Press approval plans as something that we all had.  Bouncing off that idea Cathy pointed out that we don’t all have University Press approval plans and wondered if some sort of data collection was needed to discover what sort of approval plans institutions have, which vendors are preferred etc. Anne agreed and also the details of how collection development is handled and what subject specialist are established.  Bill C. agreed that collecting that information could be a good start.  He went on to suggest that an analysis of the UC to determine purchasing habits and duplicate copies would be useful.  Sherida felt that a comparison of what we are doing now to the study that was done prior to Voyager might give us information about how our practices have changed.  Anne wondered if member libraries were using the UC as part of their collection development process.  Cathy suggested that could be one piece of data that we tried to collect.  Sherida stated that she does use the UC when weeding.   A brief discussion of the Last Copy in Georgia policies and procedures followed.  Anne asked if order records appeared in the UC. Bill C answered that in general order records do not show in the UC.  Sherida commented that we could have order records in the UC if we wanted to display that info.

Cathy asked the group what the next step should be.  She suggested that we could initiate a survey to gather information from the system libraries on their current practices or we could ask RACL for guidance.  Sherida thought that it might be a good idea to ask RACL if they were more interested in hardcopy or electronic collection development.  Most of our discussion so far has been about hardcopy.  She wonders what the turn-away statistics would be for the consortia held e-books.  Is one copy enough to serve all 30 institutions?  Cathy said that she is concerned about the e-book purchases that we make as individual institutions.  Sherida agreed but said she wondered if there was value in having three copies and buying them to serve the consortia.  Bill C. said that e-books constitute a prime topic that is being discussed by RACL with some planning for a major e-book purchase in the near future.  Sherida is interested in exploring ways to leverage our dollars so that we all have access to a single three seat license instead of buying the books individually.  Anne described problems encountered by the University of California.  She wondered if we could negotiate a license that would allow all of our students to have access to e-books owned by any of the consortia libraries.  Discussion on this topic continued including how likely the vendors would be to offer consortia wide licenses to all of us, how much it would cost and how we would pay for it.

The group decided to continue working through e-mail to develop a survey on current collection development practices for print and e-resources. Including what vendors people are using to buy e-books.  Would you be willing to pay more per title to have access to all the titles purchased by members of the consortia.  Sherida stated that we need to be forward thinking so that we don’t all end up owning individual copies of the same e-book.  Sherida agreed that having one survey to get as much information as we can from a single survey.

Cathy asked the group to send ideas for survey questions through e-mail.  The group agreed that working through e-mail was preferred.

Anne offered to continue participating with the Team.  Cathy said that she would follow up on that idea.

The next meeting will be Feb. 20, 2014 at 12:00.  The meeting was adjourned.

Submitted by
Cathy Jeffrey