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Alma Resource Management

Working with the Metadata Editor in the Institution and Network Zones. Includes indication and normalization rules.


Previous Library Management Systems, like Aleph, were designed to manage physical content. Over time, campus staff found ways to bring electronic content into the system, such as adding 856 entries with links to eBooks, or setting up placeholder locations like "online resources" and adding placeholder holdings and items to eBook titles in these locations.

These work-arounds are no longer necessary, or recommended, for Alma. The system is designed to manage physical content separately from electronic content, and it is important to manage the content types separately because combining print and electronic content on the same record has the following consequences:

  • Inaccurate electronic availability publishing to Primo VE, e.g. eBooks won't appear in "available online" filtering
  • 856 fields are deliberately stripped when titles are imported from OCLC into Alma
  • Loss of opportunity to manage e-resources in bulk by package
  • Analytics impacts, such as inability to run cost per use analysis
  • Incomplete publishing to outside vendors such as Browzine or OCLC

If content migrated from Aleph with combined physical and electronic content, SUNY Library Services highly recommends cleaning this up by removing the electronic content from the physical titles. Contact us if you need help with this process.

Physical/Electronic Inventory Clean-up

Bib records in Alma may have physical and electronic inventory because:

  • Physical and electronic inventory were on the same bib record in Aleph and they migrated into Alma that way
  • Electronic portfolios may have accidentally been added to a physical bib record in Alma

SUNY was offered the opportunity to use a Print to Electronic (P2E) process to migrate electronic content from Aleph to Alma. If your campus participated in this process, it would have done the following in Alma:

  • Created the electronic portfolio on the physical bib record
  • Created an IZ only electronic portfolio
  • Added the portfolio linking information from the 856 field
  • Included the electronic provider name if the information was included in 856 $z, which is helpful to determine which CZ electronic collection the electronic portfolio should be linked to

Clean-up Notes:

  • Electronic content must be removed from print bibs one at a time because there are no jobs in Alma that can split inventory
  • The URL in the portfolio editor can be used to help identify the electronic collection if the collection name was not populated during migration
  • When setting up the replacement electronic collection, it may make sense to use an import profile, the portfolio loader, auto-load, or other batch load methods for adding content, rather than creating it manually. See Ex Libris's documentation on Managing Electronic Resources

Analytics Reports for Print/Electronic Clean-up

SUNY Library Services created several reports to help you identify bib records in Alma with the physical and electronic on the same record, and physical bib records with only electronic holdings.

The "Physical and Electronic Inventory on a Physical Bib Record" report can be found in /Share Folders/Community/Reports/Consortia/SUNY/Resource Management

  1. Go to Analytics>Analytics>Design Analytics
  2. Click Catalog
  3. Expand the "Shared Folders" down to the "Resource Management" folder
  4. Click Open or Edit from the "Physical and Electronic Inventory on a Physical Bib Record" report
    • Open - will open the results only, which can be exported to excel
    • Edit - will allow the user to view and change the criteria, as well as see the job result. If you want to change the criteria, make a copy of the report in your own Analytics area rather than changing the master report.

The "Electronic Inventory Only on Physical Bib Records" report is in the same folder.

Splitting Electronic Inventory from Physical Bib Records

  1. Look up the title with an All Titles search
  2. Determine the CZ or IZ electronic collection the portfolio belong to
  3. Perform an "Electronic Portfolio: Title: [Title]" IZ search to see:
    • If an electronic portfolio already exists and is linked to the correct electronic collection, delete the problematic portfolio, making sure to choose  "Delete bibliographic records" in the drop-down menu for "How to handle bibliographic records without inventory"
    • If the correct portfolio does not exist in your system, find it and activate it from the correct collection in the CZ and then delete the problematic portfolio