CODI 2005 – Day Three (am)

Insights into Web Reporter and NarrowCast (Eileen Kontrovitz & Brian Rawlings)

Wonderful product, but the roll-out hasn’t been the best!
(Brian Rawlings, Alpha G)

Optional components (add on services) for Web Reporter…

  • OLAP – used for data mining:
    • report objects – include items included in the SQL but not included in the report (e.g. correct sorting by “reconst” fields such as title or call/class number)
    • view filters – includes items in the SQL Query but filters the results displayed in the report
    • derived metrics – create a new metric on the fly based on existing metrics on the report
    • …who benefits? – sites with large databases will benefit the most, as well as people creating “what if?” reports
    • consider purchasing OLAP only for the administrator
  • Report Services:

    • Crystal Reports type interface that can draw data from multiple grids
    • useful for creating letter-type output (e.g. invoice notice letters)
    • …who benefits? – schools, home services, anyone wanting to create form letters
    • in the future, larger number of Report Services documents will be created in future metadata releases
    • not every user needs Report Services
  • Narrowcast:

    • pro-active, automated report delivery
    • reports can be sent to email, files, printers, or SMS devices (text messaging)
    • …who benefits? – everyone!
    • Narrowcast users are cheaper – you may have plenty already
    • savings – you can enter multiple email addresses for the same user

[Narrowcast] is the most exciting part of Web Reporter
(Brian Rawlings, Alpha G)

Brian’s general recommendations:

  • buy as few users as possible
  • buy analysts licenses rather than reporter licenses
  • compliance is based on the number of logins created
  • enable add-on services for individual users as needed

General MetaData rule: when including item attributes, look for them first in the request, circ, circ_history, burb, and burb_history folders
Narrowcast automation can…
1) save you and your staff money and time:

  • automate report delivery
  • notices (inc. pre-overdue)
  • newsletters
  • performance based alerts

2) deliver reports to a fixed group of people, or a dynamic group of people on a specified schedule
3) deliver any type of email notice:

  • dynamic subscription, dynamic content
  • hold notices, pre-overdues, overdue, billing, etc
  • html formatted email, text completely customisable
  • queries database for notice conditions, updates records after sending email
  • needs a few custom attributes if using MSTR 7.5.0

Narrowcast can keep a copy of emails sent, or it can write to the Horizon database to write a block.
Narrowcast Newsletters:

  • email newsletters and event calendars
  • keep your patrons informed of library events

Narrowcast can sent performance based alerts – e.g. alert me when Day End did not run