Primo WG Update

Again this year, the IGeLU Primo Working Group (WG) has enjoyed the close working relationship with our sister group in ELUNA. This news in brief therefore has many common points with the ELUNA Primo WG annual report.

Annual Enhancement Process (NERS)

  • The community submitted 123 new enhancement requests for the 2020 voting cycle.  During the vetting process, the IGeLU and ELUNA Primo WG Enhancement Team, led by Bettina Kaldenberg, merged 18 requests; 2 were not votable due to release fixes, 1 was outside of scope, 1 was withdrawn, and 1 was sent to Alma for voting. 100 enhancements were presented to member institutions for voting. The first round of voting was extended three weeks, in recognition of the needs of the community to prioritise local efforts around the global COVID-19 situation, and was closed finally on April 15 with 36,087 voting points applied. The top 20 requests are now with Ex Libris for pointing, as we prepare for the second round of voting to start in the near future.

Central Discovery Index (CDI)

  • The Primo WGs of IGeLU and ELUNA did not play an active role in the transition from PCI (Primo Central Index) to CDI. In retrospect it would have been ideal to have a coordinated testing effort. The IGeLU / ELUNA WG ownership of the CDI effort was not clear, and some assumed that the Content WG was participating. 
  • We learned that the CDI early adopters working with Ex Libris did not have a collaborative group as such. Each site had a separate basecamp with Ex Libris to manage the project for that institution or consortium, without a coordinated opportunity to consult with each other for testing, or review and learn from each others’ experiences and feedback. This resulted in a lack of transparency in the development, design, and roll-out of CDI.
  • Nonetheless, two members of the WG, Stacey van Groll and Lee Houghton, have been particularly active in their testing and reporting of CDI issues, which have contributed to much needed improvements to the product and the documentation.

Monthly Meetings with Ex Libris Product Management

  • Every month the IGeLU and ELUNA Primo WG chairs/co-chairs have a conference call with Ex Libris Primo Product Management and related parties. Usually, Ex Libris attendees include Nili Natan, Yisrael Kuchar, and Christine Stohn. 
  • This forum is very helpful to escalate issues and discuss the Roadmap, NERS progress and development, widespread incidents affecting the community, and as an opportunity to raise other issues as needed by direct conduit. It is also very valuable that both IGeLU and ELUNA Primo WG leaders participate, to make sure that everyone has been part of the same high-level conversations about Primo. 
  • This year an especially important discussion occurred related to the timing of the May 2020 release for Primo sites using the Back Office. Some other product releases were delayed due to COVID-19 library closures, and the transition of staff to working remotely. It was suggested the Primo release should be delayed 3 months and combined with the August 2020 release. After discussion, and polling Primo WG members, we were nearly unanimous in deciding that continuing with the planned schedule was best for the community, as staff would have a month to adjust to new work environments before the release was installed on sandboxes. This decision achieved the least disruption to the development cycle and allowed users to get bug fixes and features sooner. 

Angular upgrade

No decision has been made on the angular upgrade. The IGeLU and ELUNA WG chairs/co-chairs have discussed the matter with Ex Libris Product Managers, who have advised that they are continuing to evaluate risks versus rewards. The next step is to do outreach to the Primo developer community. No timeline is confirmed yet for this, as most folks are still making major work adjustments for this unusual year.

Submitted by Knut Bøckman