Acquisitions Standards

Authors: Alison Brandt, Rebecca Green

INTRODUCTION

The acquisition process has been defined as consisting of four main areas: submission of orders for checking and order placement, bibliographic checking, ordering, and follow-up. The process of selection was felt to be distinct from the process of acquisition, although specific aspects of selection can overlap with the submission of orders in Berkeley's current environment. The process of selection merits its own set of standards. Similarly, although follow-up is here defined as a part of the acquisition process, claiming and receipt of ordered material was felt to be part of monograph and serial processing, separate workflows covered by their own sets of standards.

The standards below apply to anyone whose work falls within the four main areas of acquisition. Depending on the ordering workflow of a particular subject area, they may apply to selectors as well as to technical service staff in branches or the Technical Services Department. These standards cover basic and essential elements of the acquisition process. Some branches also carry out optional procedures, such as maintaining on-order files, which have not been covered by these standards.


1. SUBMISSION OF ORDERS FOR CHECKING AND ORDER PLACEMENT

Introduction

In the Library's current configuration, submission of orders for checking and keying can be done by a selector as part of the selection process, or can be done by technical services staff who pass along order requests from the selector to the Collection Core Services Division. These standards have been written with the full range of order submission options in mind. In either case, the timeliness with which orders can be submitted for further processing is directly dependent upon the timeliness and methodology of the selection process. We strongly urge the establishment of standards for selection, without which it is much more difficult to establish quantifiable standards for order submission.

Manner of performance

Establishing a fundamental bibliographic citation (author, title, imprint, edition, volumes wanted, and series if possible) accurate enough to identify material is the responsibility of the individual or unit submitting the order.

Timeliness

Quality

The bibliographic and publication data supplied should be as complete and accurate as possible, although full bibliographic checking is not required.

Effectiveness in use of resources

Supplying duplicate or excess information on order requests (i.e., addresses of major publishers) should be avoided, as it constitutes unnecessary work.

Methods of performance

Quantity

The number of orders submitted should be based on an awareness of the amount of money available at that point of the fiscal year. Orders submitted to the Collection Core Services Division will be returned unplaced when monographic funds are spent out.


2. BIBLIOGRAPHIC CHECKING

Introduction

Historically, rates for either unwanted duplication of material or failed orders resulting directly from poor bibliographic checking have never been established for the Library, as no adequate means of determining such rates exist.

The goal of bibliographic checking is to establish accurate bibliographic citations and holdings for every title. We estimate that an error rate of less than 5% should be maintained by staff with experience and training in bibliographic checking. Staff who check titles and also receive materials for the same location are more likely to see the success, failure, or duplication of orders resulting from their checking.

Manner of performance

Timeliness

Quality

When establishing a bibliographic citation, the following elements must be accurately determined by consulting publisher's information, existing Berkeley or UC system records, LC cataloging cards, OCLC and/or RLIN: author(s) or issuing bodies, title, imprint, edition, series (including volume number if applicable). For serials, publication frequency and current status must also be determined. Non-print publication formats (i.e. CD-ROMs or electronic publications) should be specified.

If duplication needs to be monitored or avoided, Berkeley's holdings of a given title should be accurately and comprehensively determined, regardless of whether the item in question is cataloged as a monograph, as a serial, or differently according to location.

Effectiveness in use of resources

Methods of performance

Quantity

Approximately 60 citations per hour can be checked when consulting a bibliographic utility. This figure can vary significantly in either direction, depending on the difficulty of the citations involved and whether or not records are being downloaded into Innopac at the same time.


3. ORDERING

Introduction

The ordering process (distinct from the receiving process) can be considered complete from a technical services point of view when orders have been entered into Innopac or a vendor system. In the case of direct purchase, the ordering process is complete when materials reach the Library. Vendor evaluation, and the addition or deletion of vendors from the list currently used by the Library, is usually done on the librarian or AUL level for vendors with whom we have major accounts. Some decisions about vendor use may be delegated to a unit such as the Collection Core Services Division on a case-by-case basis.

Entry of orders into online vendor systems

Manner of performance

Timeliness

Quality

Effectiveness in use of resources

Methods of performance

Manner of performance

Timeliness

Quality

Effectiveness in use of resources

Methods of performance

Quantity

Manner of performance

Timeliness

Quality

Effectiveness in use of resources

Methods of performance

Quantity


4. FOLLOWING UP ON ORDERS

Introduction

The purpose of follow-up on previously submitted orders is to ensure a response to an order which has not been filled after a reasonable length of time. Follow-up is usually prompted by patron request, or by routine inspection of on-order files. Following up individually on every order for an area is neither possible nor desirable. The speed and thoroughness of follow-up is usually individually determined by the selector for a given area. Some aspects of follow-up on orders might merge with other technical services workflows such as claiming.

Currently there is no established link in Library workflows between follow-up and vendor evaluation, but if staff following up on orders notice a consistent problem with a particular vendor, they are strongly advised to inform the Collection Core Services Division, the Processing Unit, or the Director of the Technical Services Department, as appropriate.

Manner of performance

Timeliness

Quality

Effectiveness in use of resources

Methods of performance

Quantity

* Contact the Collection Core Services Division for access to these documents.


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