Catalog Record Help Desk – Internal Pilot (and strange email messages)

A top priority for the Catalog Department is to fix high-priority record problems that are reported to us.

The Library hiring freeze decimated our Data Control Unit that formerly addressed problem record reports. Our response is to design and implement a new process that will allow Library staff to submit record problems via a form that will feed into the Footprints ticket system. These tickets will then be distributed to an appropriate cataloger for resolution.

I am pleased to announce that the Department will be starting an “internal pilot” to use the Footprints system to enter and track record problems. During the pilot, tickets from the DCU backlog will be entered into Footprints where Michael Meacham, the project “triage” person, will determine who will be assigned the ticket.

The tickets worked on during the internal pilot are real problems reported to us. A feature of the new process is that the person who submitted the ticket will be automatically alerted when the ticket is closed (i.e., the problem is fixed).

Don’t be surprised if you receive an email from our new system that reports that a problem you’ve submitted by some other means has been closed. These emails will be from the Catalog Record Helpdesk whose address is

Please do NOT send new maintenance requests to this address. While the internal pilot is being conducted. maintenance requests may continue to be submitted via the DCU webform at:

Our plan is to run the internal pilot for 3-4 weeks to ensure the “backend” of the system being used inside the Catalog Department works efficiently. It will also give us the opportunity to fully train staff who have not routinely addressed maintenance problems as part of their usual work. A final benefit of the pilot is that it should allow us to work down a substantial portion of the existing maintenance request backlog.

The Records Maintenance Process Design Task Force (RMPDTF) that designed this new system has also created a “communications plan” that will teach you how to submit new tickets once the internal pilot is completed and we go into production. More to come on this topic soon.