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    How to - A checklist for creating a new Library in Alma

    Created By: Stacey van Groll
    Created on: 9/05/2019

    This is a cheat sheet for creating a new Library in Alma, shared with the community because the OLH is very brief.

    The scenario is a move from one main SSH (Social Sciences & Humanities) Library to a new CEN (Central) Library.

    This work was initiated as part of renaming the Library physically, undertaking significant physical movement of resources as part of a nine month renovation, and our desire to draw a line in the sand for all inventory and data as part of transition to our new main Library.

    As always, there will be differences with how individual institutions utilise various aspects of Alma, but it’s hoped that this will prove useful as a starting point at the very least.


    Systems Specs

    • Alma with Primo Back Office
    • ILL: Relais as single broker partner, and RapidILL
    • Centralised Alma management structure, including single Acquisition Department


    Checklist table


    Staff responsible

    Date Required

    Date Done



    Create Alma Library (Code CEN)


    Note: Delete OTB default Library Level Acquisition Department

    Add CEN to Served Library for default ISRS Acquisition Department





    Will give weekly HealthCheck error if not done:

    • Admin - Configuring ISRS
    • Work Order Departments
    • AcqDeptISRS
    • Served Libraries
    • Attach Library
    • Choose new Central Library and Save

    Update Primo BO Institution Wizard Library config (add CEN)


    Must be before collections start moving, for facet display

    Update Primo BO normalization rules for Curriculum Special Collections facet





    • Extra OR rules added for Old SSH Code to new CEN code
      • sshc = cenc
      • sshcb = cencb
      • sshcbk = cencbk
    • Deployed but no re-normalization, as records should come through naturally

    Alma Location creation

    • Library
    • Assign Default Acquisition Location to the 'General' Location = ceng
    • Location codes for curric must be as follows:
      • Old SSH Code to new CEN code
      • sshc = cenc
      • sshcb = cencb
      • sshcbk = cencbk

    Alma Circulation desk creation

    • Library
    • Locations
    • Check for automatic hold shelf creation for default circ desk (for tech integrations)
    • Note - do not add holdshelf yet, to prevent it showing up as a pickup location option
    • Change Name from Default Circulation Desk to Central, as per other desks (and need for staff Role Profiles)

    Add Alma Library opening hours

    • Library

    Check/add Alma Location codes to TOU

    • Library
    • Locations

    Define Alma Campuses - Update St Lucia

    • Library

    Update Alma Transit times

    • Library

    Update Alma Libraries Served on LRes Work Order Dept

    • Library

    Update Role Profiles - Remove SSH and add CEN




    • Library
    • Circulation Desk

    Circulation Desk Operators and Request Operators

    Can be done earlyish but need to be careful if new staff come on board in interim stage

    Setup SSH to CEN Non-transit config


    Create new Alma printer

    • Library

    Required for hold slips - will also need to update Alma print server and scripts
    Create temp for SSH and move orig to CEN

    Add Alma Library contact information




    • Library

    Note: The Start Date and End Date fields on the Library's address are informational fields only

    Add new Alma Location codes to SpineOMatic programming


    Advise Monograph vendors of new (replacement) location codes


    Advise Journal vendors of new (replacement) location codes



    • CEN Circulation Desk review and finalisation
    • General Details:
      • Check box for 'Has holdshelf'
        • Hold shelf sorting of 'Requester Name'
        • Maximum time on holdshelf (days) of '5'
        • Has hold shelf processing - leave unticked
        • Check box for 'Notify patron of canceling expired hold'
      • Check boxes for Credit card and Debit card under Payment Information
      • Check box for 'Supports personal delivery'
    • Watch timeline - need to prevent users picking this as pickup location too soon

    Update active Staff roles (add CEN) for all applicable staff accounts

    • Library
    • Circ Desk
    • Hold shelf

    Note: Must use Load Desk/Department Operators, as cannot use the Update/Notify Users job for these circ/request parameter based roles

    Internal comms to staff to start using CEN ‘Currently at’ location and stop using SSH


    Active holds (not yet assigned) - Pick up location to be changed from SSH to CEN

    Items transiting to SSH holdshelf - Pick up location to be changed

    Activate 'Supports personal delivery'





    When done and ready, remove the 'Has hold shelf' checkbox from SSH

    Double-check Staff roles in Analytics next day (add CEN)





    Note: Export list option from Alma is very unsatisfactory, in only listing the operator name, rather than also the associated roles, so is essentially useless

    Inventory moved

    • Serials - individually by holding in MD Editor 852
    • Monos - by "Change Physical Items" job

    Check Primo UI for functionality, display and facets




    • Inventory
    • Confirm Pickup location of Central for Holds placement
    • Confirm Availability status of Central
    • Confirm Library facet of Central
    • Confirm flipside ie none of above for Social Sciences & Humanities

    Note: Depending on amount of inventory running through hotswap, may need to check indexing in BO and re-run sets through Publish to Primo job for any issues, especially stubborn suppressed records still discoverable, and host bibliographic records which like to be sticky (Tip: gather all records in Analytics, including host, and load by set to republish)

    Check Alma inventory by Library and Location in Analytics widgets to ensure no lingering SSH


    Update active Staff roles (remove SSH) for all applicable staff accounts

    • Library
    • Circ Desk
    • Hold shelf
    • Inventory

    After Inventory is done

    Retain for Admins for near future for troubleshooting, until SSH Library deleted

    Double-check Staff roles in Analytics next day (remove SSH)

    • Roles
    • Overnight ETL

    Self circ integrations

    Remove self circ integration profiles from SSAH circ desks

    Rename integrations from SSH to CEN in Alma & lib-stun

    Add renamed integration profiles to the self circ for Central Circulation desks





    Note: Machine circulation must stop while integrations are moved to the new circ desks. Do early in morning before Library gets busy ie less disruptive time

    Add SIP sorting rules

    • Library
    • Circ desks
    • Integrations

    Resource Sharing Partner - Default Pickup Location (single Relais broker) from SSH to CEN





    Changed even though non-mandatory field in NCIP Accept parameters

    Finalise any outstanding inventory move issues






    1. The Change Physical Items Job report consistently indicates that all records have been processed successfully. However, upon checking the location code which should have been moved, we find that there are still sometimes items in that location. A consistent trigger of these items appears to be a non-unique barcode, which occurs both when instances of the duplicate barcode are both active (which is a user error at some point as this should not occur), and when one is active and the other deleted (which is legitimate and expected, such as when a resource is withdraw as missing and then is found later and added back to Alma with the same barcode). The job appears to halt at the first record of this type it encounters and then fails to process the remainder, despite indicating Job success. If the offending barcode is removed manually from the set, the Job can be re-initiated on this set and then truly completes successfully. Case submitted

    2. Some records are 'stuck' and not editable such as for Withdrawal, and cannot be processed either by job or manually. These are those records above which have a non-unique barcode, both those which are active x 2 and those which are active x 1 and deleted x 1. Submit case.

    Delete SSH Locations once empty of holdings




    • Inventory move / delete

    Note: Prevents resurrection issue of holdings with no items

    Update Analytics reports for customized locations and libraries – Widgets, Scheduled, and Main Menu reports




    • Library
    • Location

    Lesson learned: Don’t do too much customization, as this is timeconsuming!

    Update any Alma Letters Configuration, which have been customized to refer to the old Library by static text eg if / then rules         Note: Users will continue to get letters referencing the original Library by automated data in some scenarios, such as for resources loaned when the item was located in the old library / location and still on loan

    Update ILL vendor (Relais)

    List of all new CEN location codes and SSH codes to be removed

    New Central Library details to add pick up location to webforms






    Update physical report in Analytics Dashboard for ILL vendor - RapidILL holdings




    • Library
    • Location
    • Analytics

    Note: Feeds Publishing Profile

    Update Primo BO normalization rules for Curriculum Special Collections facet

    Remove extra OR rules




    • Curriculum collections moved

    Note: Deleted rules and deployed but did not renorm as unnecessary

    Update Primo BO Library Institution Wizard config (remove SSH)




    • Must be no inventory at the Library / Location

    Library Location Facet will appear as code rather than label if any inventory remaining. No other impact as other elements Alma RTA

    Check Alma Temporary Locations for SSH and remove






    Remove Alma Primary circulation desk from Levels 3 & 4


    Delete Alma Library (SSH)




    • No inventory (inclu associated fines and fees)
    • No roles
    • etc, etc
    • Remove SSH as Served Library of ISRS Acquisition Department
    • Remove Acquire For Relations
    • Remove Default Location of Acquisition of sshg
    • Remove scoped roles from final Admin staff




    Changes or suggestions