Monday, August 02, 2010

big disasters and small miracles

ok, ok, maybe miracles is pushing it. ;)

but really,
1st off; all this could have been so much worst. Given that the entire truss assembly has been compromised, a couple main truss girders have failed, yaddi yaddi yadda. We are so very lucky that no people was hurt, no material or equipment was lost. so sigh!

Then, this is where being lil' admin in a smaller library system serves me (and therefore my employer) well. That is how we were able to do this (start serving the community again in their own neighborhood) inside 72 hours, thank you very much! Thanks to our friends at the local tax collector's office.

a lot of the credit should go to some beautiful features of the unicorn (ahem, symphony) software. I know, I know, I am the 1st one in line to complain about it every other day; but here is what knowing the software well, and having access to simple but powerful report allowed me to do. (forgive me for the sirsi speak)

globally editing to MAIN LIB / CLOSED-STORAGE LOCATION (hidden, not available, non-holdable) all that branch's small batches (never more than 10000) by item type, excluding floating item types

then run rebuild text to make all the indexes OK and have all the item easy to find again where they are. big plus: rebuilding our entire text database only takes 23 minutes here. (see what I mean about being small helping a lot)

edited closed dates, close days, for that branch to have the new little outpost service hours reflected and to eliminated fines accruing on materials while everyone looked for us...
edited all the notice text files (separating the ones for/from that branch) and created new notice text to inform patrons of situation (that for both automated phone and email notices.)
we are also adding a copy of press release announcing re-location to final notices

edit branch name to show CLOSED and customize holds pick up choice list to reflect temporary outpost choice.

created some daily maintenance report to catch what would have/will fall thru the cracks (by item type./loc/branch)

In the 1st 2 weeks after this event, we made sure to:
hold update meetings 2x day
email update to all staff daily.

finally, we were also able to pluck a couple of public cpus and re-purpose as extra public computers at nearest branch which is seeing most of the re-routed traffic.

Ill be glad to discuss this with anyone interested. It was (still is) a learning experience.

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