New look coming for Koha staff pages

nhaisLOCAL libraries will be upgraded to Koha version 22.11 in the coming months. The exact date for your upgrade will be posted when available in the news area on the left of the staff homepage.

The staff interface has been redesigned for this release. You can take a test drive of the new look at ByWater's demo site. Use bywater for both username and password. The site is refreshed every 3 hours and all changes are reset so play around all you like. Any data added to the site will be deleted.

More information about Koha 22.11 is available on ByWater's upgrades hub page.


Koha Upgrades Fall 2021

nhaisLOCAL libraries, and other ByWater Partners, will be upgraded to Koha version 21.05 this fall. We expect to be scheduled for upgrades sometime in November and will notify nhaisLOCAL partners by email (as usual) when we have details on timing.

There are a TON of cool new things coming in this version. If you did not attend one of the What's New webinars I strongly encourage you to view a recorded session to see what's coming to your Koha system.

Here are a few of the enhancements that seemed especially interesting to me:

  • In the OPAC patrons will be able to view their past holds (if you turn this feature on with the OPACholdshistory system preference) as well as to search and print that info. Check out this Monday Minutes for details. Note that this works independently of the patron's reading history.
  • There are new tools for sending reminder notices to patrons who have a hold waiting to be picked up. This was covered in Monday Minutes.
  • You can now define reasons for cancelling an individual hold and attach that reason to the record when you cancel the hold. A blog post on cancelling holds explains your options.
  • The ability to restore overdue fines on lost/returned items has now been integrated into Koha. It was previously possible with some fancy work-arounds, but now it is built in and easy to do. 
  • A new system preference, RecordStaffUserOnCheckout, will allow you to display (in the staff interface only) which staff user made a particular transaction (based on logins). If you don't already have specific logins for each staff person you may want to set that up to make this feature useful for your library. 

ByWater Solutions has a blog post that gathers all the info about the new version into one place. Check it out to see what's coming that will make your system work even better for you.

As always, all the new system preferences will be defaulted not to change current behavior of your system, so you will need to turn on features you want. nhaisLOCAL libraries can contact the NHAIS Help Desk to make these requests.


Self-paced Learning Resources

ByWater Solutions assembled several series of self-paced learning videos. These may be useful to your library as a refresher course, to train new staff, or for cross-training purposes. These are not necessarily new, but a recent question reminded me of them.

 These links have been added to the RESOURCES Page of this blog for future reference.