Paul Rudd Information Professional

expertise gained through experience

Heritage User Group Meeting

Heritage User Group – Meeting July 2013

The Heritage User group meeting was held at Conference Aston in Birmingham and focused on the following aspects of Heritage:

  • Heritage Cirqa (the latest release)
  • RFID
  • E-books

I was at the meeting because I use Heritage and I would like to update to the latest version – Hertiage Cirqa

Emma Duffield (I.S. Oxford) demonstrated and talked everybody through all the varied aspects of Cirqa and also highlighted many of the benefits of upgraded to Cirqa.

These benefits included the following:

  • System speed – As the system will be running on an online server the system will perform tasks, such as writing reports much faster than at present.
  • Event Schedular – The ‘Event Schedular’ enables you to run a whole series of processes in an automated way including most batch processes.

The key processes you can carry out with the Event Schedular are listed below:

  • Prepare and send overdues/recalls/reservations/SDI notices
  • Rebuild indexes
  • Run reports – Reports can be created much faster as they are run on a server
  • Notify readers – sending emails to readers with items on loan for so many days

Test data area 

There is a test area of Heritage – although this is not new- it now allows you to trial any changes you make in the test area using up-to-date data. The ability to trial any changes in the test area using current system data will enable a greater degree of success, when conducting major changes on the live system. (Data can be automatically placed in the Test Data area or can be manually transferred.)

Other features that could potentially be useful

  • The Cirqa client can be installed on any computer so that you can perform work from anywhere on the system.

Bournville College’s RFID Implementation

Amanda Braund spoke about Bournville College’s implementation of RFID highlighting some of the considerations that need to be made when Implementing RFID within a library or information service. She spoke about considering where to put the kiosks for self issue bearing in mind that they need to be located near power and network points (also how many kiosks maybe needed is also a consideration and as they do cost a fair amount this is something that has to be carefully considered). Amanda also mentioned aspects of the tagging technology and how this actually works stating that the tags hold the accession number detail of the item and for the implementation at Bournville College they had to place all the tags in each item manually. One positive aspect of the the self service kiosks was the fact that in most cases the users tended to always pay their fines without any dispute. This is apparently different behaviour when items are returned to a staff member at a desk as in some cases the user would complain about the fine/amount of the fine.


Staff from a couple of other institutions, which included Ian Cockrill from Gower College in Swansea talked about e-books and many of the issues involved with placing them onto the library management system and aspects on how to promote them and their use. Some useful suggestions on promoting e-books and their use suggested by Ian were to place stickers on the hard-copy items that were also available as e-books informing users that the item was also available as an e-book. In addition, another idea put forward for promoting e-books was to use old video cases and to place the covers of books into them as a way of being able to display an e-book in the physical collection.