Koha Tutorial Videos
Deep Dive: Article Requests
In this Deep Dive, Jessie and Kelly dive deep into the world of Article Requests. This feature although around since Koha Version 16.11 (2017), and there have been many developments to improve this functionality. Article requests give libraries the ability to allow patrons to place requests on articles. Within the circulation and fine rules, Koha allows libraries to pick and choose which item types and patron categories have this option available to them.
Steps to set up Article Requests in Koha
- First, enable your system preference for ArticleRequests. Set to Enable patrons to place article requests.
- Next, you will need to decide how your patrons will make requests, either record only, the item only, or both record and item level.
- You can set 3 different system preferences for mandatory fields to be filled in dependent on how your records are requested.
- System preference ArticleRequestsMandatoryFields: make the following fields mandatory for records that record level or item-level requestable
- System preference ArticleRequestsMandatoryFieldsItemOnly makes the following fields mandatory for records that are only item-level requestable
- System preference ArticleRequestsMandatoryFieldsRecordOnly make the following fields mandatory for records that are only record-level requestable
- Next, you will want to go into your circulation and fine rules matrix and select each rule that you want to allow requests.
- You can allow requests to be made at the record level, item level, (Yes which means both), and no (none).
- Now you can place requests on both the staff client and OPAC.
More System Preferences
We covered the basics above for setting up article requests, but there are a few others to consider when working on your library's specific workflow:
This system preference determines the various formats patrons can request their articles in (either photocopy or scan). We will talk about the SCAN option in the next section.
This system preference tells Koha to either always show the option to place an article request link or use an algorithm to show or hide.
By default, Koha has PHOTOCOPY as the only format option, however, there is also the option to add an option for SCAN. If a library is looking to scan the article requests and have a URL to direct that patron, to access this article, this is a great alternative.
If there are both options for the patron to pick from, by default, the first value in the system preference will be the default option.
If a patron uses the SCAN format when placing the article request, the staff will be able to add an URL to the article request which then can be sent to the patron in the notice!
With this feature, many notices are included!
Any notice can be edited to fit the library's workflow.
AR_CANCELED: This notice is sent to the patron when an article request is canceled by staff.
AR_COMPLETED**: This notice is sent to the patron when an article request is marked as completed by staff.
AR_PENDING: This notice is sent to the patron when an article request is changed to ‘pending’ status
AR_PROCESSING: This notice is sent to the patron when an article request is marked as being processed by staff.
AR_REQUESTED: This notice is sent to the patron when an article request has been made in order to confirm the request.
- Used to print a slip for an article request
- The slip or receipt can be printed manually when managing article requests from the staff interface.
- Get there: Circulation > Article requests > Actions > Print slip
**If a library would like to add the URL to the notice that gets sent to the patron when the article request has been completed, this would be the ideal notice to include the URL link
Steps for Staff Processing Article Requests
- Once the article request has been placed, staff will see new requests at the bottom of the home page on the staff client. (In the same location as tags, purchase suggestions, comments and modifications).
- From there staff will be able to select requests to process.
- The first step would be for a staff member to process the request, which moves the request to the processing tab and alerts other staff members that the request is in process.
- Next staff will go to the shelf and make a copy of the requested article.
- Once that is complete, staff can print the Article request slip (this can be customized in notices and slips) and staple or paper clip it to the article.
- Alternatively, the staff could scan it and upload it to a file that can be shared via an URL to the patron.
- Finally staff will select the complete article request which will send a notice to the patron who made the request letting them know the request is ready for pickup.
- This removes the article request from the processing tab.
- From the patron's notices, any article notices can be found here once sent to the patron.
Read more by Kelly McElligott