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Thu, Jul. 14th, 2005, 06:29 pm
catwingself: How to process 467 Harry Potter books in 2 1/2 hours

Aaaaarrrrgggghhh!

When do 7 of the 9 Library techs leave?

At 2:30 pm.

And when did all of our HP get delivered down at the loading dock?

At 2:25 pm.

They have to be received. The cataloging has to be smoothed out a little. They have to have barcodes, location labels, spine labels, and label protectors put on them. They have to be added as items to the bib. records. They have to have RFID tags put in and cover labels put over them. They have to get checked in to trigger the holds, and sorted into the proper delivery crates for the couriers to take them out on their routes to the branches.

The other LTA had never done a bestseller before, so I got to fight with the receiving and label printing, thereby managing to totally freeze the program. NOTE WELL : Never ever try and print 300 spine labels in the Millenium program using the Ctrl-L. It will make your computer freeze in fear. Put them in the Queue for printing. Then print from the list created.

Most of us left in Tech. Services stayed until 5 pm to get all the barcoding and labeling done. It took all of us, plus a CDO person, and the lady in charge of our Network to get it all done. My supervisor, the lady in charge of Tech. Services, Acquisitions, and Cataloging finished with the last label protector at roughly 4:30. Too bad none of us left knew how to do the RFID tagging. The darling fans of HP in Tucson will simply have to wait until Monday to pick up their holds.

At least I get to go home an hour early tomorrow.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 01:45 am (UTC)
ihateusernames

Heh, funny you should say this, my co-worker and I were just talking about it...

We've got 4 tech processing people, but each one has a specialized job. The two that are needed to process our HP books aren't even here on the same day... Major problems.

a) we haven't gotten the books yet
b) person #1 is here only on Friday, but covering the circulation desk
c) person #2 is here only on Saturday, but also covering the circulation desk

This library is getting a little screwy with the positions left open and not enough coverage... the option of abandoning ship is looking mighty fine... unfortunately my compulsion to help is too... I'm going to offer to cover the desk myself on Saturday if the tech services person needs to get to those books. IF we even get them. *sigh*

Now that I'm taking a management class for my MLIS, I can see a lot wrong with how this library runs... it's the psychology major syndrome... now that I know about it, I point out what's wrong in the people around me... funny, I was a psych major.. yeesh...

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:14 am (UTC)
catwingself: Maybe when you're done with the degree ...

I think there may be some Platonic Ideal, appropriate to each system, that the administration of each library system should be striving for. It's unfortunate that you're working in a place that has such problems.

Perhaps after you finish your degree you'll find a place that's a little less, shall we say, challenging to work. Good luck.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:31 am (UTC)
ihateusernames: Re: Maybe when you're done with the degree ...

Well, I won't be finishing for another couple years, I just started! And I just found a Youth Services Librarian position, full time (I am not full time at the library I do work at) that not only pays $30,000 a year, they aren't requiring you to have your masters. So... finding a new place to work may come sooner rather than later. I mean, I do need a full time position. If the place I'm at can't give me one... yeah, I have to look elsewhere. I knew I would have to eventually, just didn't think it would be this soon... *sigh* Oh well, thanks!

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 01:46 am (UTC)
kuroidoragon

Hehe, well I was the only circ. person at all today at the library I was at and I'm a rover! Tough day, huh? I feel ya.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 01:46 am (UTC)
kuroidoragon

Rather, I was the only circ. person for parts of the day.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:26 am (UTC)
catwingself: Thanks, you're a sweetie

Sounds like you had a hard day, yourself. I've done that before, so I'd like to say I know how it feels.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 01:50 am (UTC)
ex_dreaminco615

that sucks that the people will have to wait- i was willing to do unpaid overtime to make sure all my branches books are ready for saturday. most of our hp6 books come from bwi pre-processed... i only had to link some hp6 leased books (only about 50 of them for my branch)... good luck.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:19 am (UTC)
catwingself

Yeah, I feel a little bad about that. I would've stayed, but I really don't know how to work with the tagging stations. Pretty much only the Tech. Services pages (and the person who used to be their supervisor) know how to do that, and the last page left before the rest of us had anything she could work on.

I have to admit I feel hesitant about preprocessed books. They're wanting to outsource a lot of that here, and a lot of the folks up here would have no clue what to do at a branch. There are other reasons to question how they want to implement it here, but the new director is set on it. I do recognize that in this kind of situation it really would have helped.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:26 am (UTC)
ex_dreaminco615

i used to be a cataloger (at a previous workplace) and back then i was hesitant about outsourcing processing... and i have to admit that having preprocessed books really helps in a busy branch... i get to spend the time that i would otherwise spend on processing books... doing outreach, forming relationships with parents and kids, etc. i enjoy my job more that way.

change in inevitable when it comes to libraries. gotta roll with the punches, ya know?

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:06 am (UTC)
platypus

Good heavens. The public libraries are getting HOW many copies?

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:22 am (UTC)
catwingself

By the time the hold list is down to zero, we'll have roughly 50 copies in circulating condition. That's not so many for the 24 locations in the system. I shudder to think how many a BIG public system might have to get.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 03:16 am (UTC)
rbb

The Broward County (FL) library system, one of the 10(?) largest in the country, has ordered approximately 500 copies. That doesn't include the 45 that my library, which is kind-of-sort-of part of the system, but not completely, is getting.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 05:04 am (UTC)
riofriotex

My library system (20 branches plus mobile services) has about a 4 to 1 holds to copies ratio for "popular" titles (which also have a shorter checkout period). There are currenly 1057 holds on HP6 and we are getting 200+ copies in the initial shipment. So far 151 appear to be processed but haven't been wanded yet to pick up the holds. Looks like I will get one as I am #124 on the list! Close to 100 alone are coming to my branch, the largest in the system. Regional managers will be hand-delivering them to each of the five libraries in our four regions before we open on Saturday morning, and we will be keeping THESE holds behind the circ desk rather than in the public pickup area.

A lot of our older HPs are worn out and have been weeded, but every time the next installment comes out, there is a flurry of re-reading of the older versions.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:31 am (UTC)
anarchivist

this is why i don't like the thought of working in public libraries

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:31 am (UTC)
rabid1st: My heart-felt sympathies

I did ours today...while fending off assorted drop-ins with my feet.

Let me share the quiz prompted by our processing glitch...

http://www.livejournal.com/users/rabid1st/61340.html#cutid1

Rae

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:47 am (UTC)
asa_brarian

Its ok, tech services folk aren't the only ones experiencing a serious case of Potter anxiety. Pity the poor YA/Youth librarians.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 04:42 am (UTC)
(Anonymous): I'd also like to add...

That those of us working for the shipping companies have been putting in an extra 30 minutes for the last week, solely because of HP.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 06:23 am (UTC)
bleemoo: Jealous

I work in a bookstore. We're not allowed to open the boxes until tonight.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 10:49 am (UTC)
butterflymama3

Wow, we're a smaller suburban library (population 9,000). I think we ordered a total of 10 copies of HP6. We only have about 7 holds right now but I am sure that number will go up on Saturday when people come to get it only to find all of our copies out. I don't know how many more we will purchase b/c we usually do the 5 to 1 ratio for bestsellers but our new slightly clueless director doesn't like to buy more than 4 or 5 copies of anything no matter how many holds are on it. Oh, I should mention that she was a tech services person for 10 years, got her MLS in December and on January 1 became Director. AGRH!

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 11:45 am (UTC)
rbb

Is there any way to get her to work Saturday and/or Sunday on the desk so she can see first-hand why she might perhaps possibly like to buy a couple more books? Has she ever worked a public desk? *sheesh*

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 01:32 pm (UTC)
butterflymama3

Has she ever worked a public desk? *sheesh*

Well....she has worked Reference occassionally and has "filled in" both at circulation and children's. I doubt she will change her mind on buying more copies of HP6, but I will keep trying to convince her of the need. *sheesh* is right.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 02:40 pm (UTC)
cb1281

Heehee. Brings back memories. I don't work in TS anymore, but when Book 4 came out, our shipment of approximately 130 copies came at 3 pm the day before. The director wanted the copies in the branches before they closed so they could hand them out first thing in the morning, so we had like 8 or 9 people (not even all processors) jacketing, stamping, stickering, etc., and then we had special deliveries sent out to the libraries. For Book 5, we got them well in advance, so we didn't have that problem then. However, Book 6 still hasn't arrived there yet... they've got 127 copies and 228 holds.

I kind of miss it. Especially on a day like today. Some days the public just drives me nuts, and today would be one of them.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 07:49 pm (UTC)
(Anonymous): More HP

I can't believe your patrons have to wait till Monday! Lend them without the RFID tags for heaven's sake! Several of us in the Selection Department will be working till 9 tonight checking the books in and processing the holds. The books themselves are all processed by BWI and Baker & Taylor like all our new books. BTW, here in Brooklyn NY we have over 1100 copies sitting in the processing office. Normally the books are drop shipped to the branches but for this special case we're doing them at Central.

Sat, Jul. 16th, 2005 12:24 pm (UTC)
catwingself: Re: More HP

Oh, I would've gladly left off some of the processing. I mentioned something about not bothering with the location labels, since we're going to shared collections in the fall, and everyone else looked at me like I was stupid.

It worked out anyway. When I went in yesterday morning half of TSV was at the tagging stations. There was a circ managers' meeting that morning and we had everything ready for them to haul back to their branches. There was a special run to deliver HP to the four branches whose didn't have anyone at the meeting.

Fri, Jul. 15th, 2005 11:59 pm (UTC)
fabgrrl: HP

My co-workers were laying bets on how many of our customer libraries would call or email us today with Harry Potter inspired issues (broken holds, special loan rules, extended open hours). We were not disappointed :^)

Sat, Jul. 16th, 2005 03:32 pm (UTC)
euchrecthulhu

If there's anything that can be guaranteed, it's that Millennium will crash. I hate that program so much.