December Newsletter

Merry Christmas
and a Happy New Year

Best wishes to all of our clients

Once again, probably like you, we find ourselves working like crazy to complete as much as possible before the sleigh bells ring and the bells peal the New Year in.
It has been a very busy year at Soutron with many things happening that have excited us and, hopefully, given you improved ways to do your tasks and manage information.
We have been hampered these past few weeks by the impact of colds and flu on most of the team at Soutron. It has been particularly nasty and has kept several of us away from our work so we are paddling away trying to catch up with lost time!
 

The Travelling Librarian

Graham Partridge on the road

Graham on the RoadSome of you may have seen our very own “Travelling Librarian” Graham Partridge come through your doors in the past few months. Graham has taken to travelling the railways to meet more of you and to share his knowledge and enthusiasm.  He really enjoys himself in the library and this is his chance to get back to his roots and make sure he knows what people want from us. He likes working alongside librarians to see what needs to be done. This year we have managed to vastly improve workflows in acquisitions and serials as a direct result. He plans to write up some of his experiences as the applications that people are using Soutron for are quite varied and amazing.

So look out for a new blog appearing in the New Year from Graham P. Graham is a keen photographer of scenery so we may get a few nice pictures thrown in!
 

 

New Release

Version 4

When Graham P is not travelling he is helping steer development of new features. The new release of Version 4, announced in October at the User Group meeting in London, has been very well received. Those people who have implemented it already are very happy with the new features and speed improvements that are being achieved. Graham P is helped by Craig Parsons to steer development and this year has seen Craig take more of a lead in the management of the development team and this has allowed Graham P to spend more time examining systems with clients. We think this type of teamwork and involvement with clients is really important so if you wish to see Graham and have him help on any projects he will make himself available.

The feedback from our early adopters of v4 and the Search Portal has led us to make some changes to the release of a new build of Soutron that we had planned to issue in December. We are really disappointed to have missed this target date but having the next build released at the end of January will allow many more features to get into the system.

Phase 1 of the Search Portal was released this year to a limited few who are keen to take on and test the new software. Results of the initial testing necessitated further development work. This will be included in the end of January build as part of Phase 2. It will include features that bring it in line with the functionality found in the present OPAC. This will also include performance improvements and enhancements to the way that records can be selected and shared. Phase 3 will be issued later in 2015. We will see new features and extended capabilities for Search released to a few clients before others. We are discussing these new features with those who are working in Archives and in Skills databases so that we are better able to manage search and present non-bibliographic data.
 
Cameron EBooks

Soutron Digital Server

An exciting addition to our capabilities is the new Soutron Digital Server platform. A separate development team has been working on this since the summer. This incorporates Adobe DRM technologies (Digital Rights Management) and places DRM wrappers around files to protect them when shared. Many clients have expressed frustration at having to use aggregator’s platforms and services without the ability to control their own digital copy of content. We feel now is the time to introduce a secure platform designed for libraries that can integrate with an existing library catalogue as well as ingest data from aggregators or publishers directly. These facilities are now part of our growing suite of solutions. We will have more announcements about this in the New Year.

For clients that attended the User Group in London, you will have met our newest recruit, Cameron Kantar who presented this new service for the first time in outline. Cameron will be in Dublin on Wednesday 28 January 2015 to meet users there, together with one of our support team, to share current activity and developments with users. Later in the day he will be presenting our ideas to potential new users in the Dublin area.
2015 Clouds

2015 and Beyond

We have a number of new initiatives planned for 2015. A Search Discovery service is one of them. This means that as well as a local catalogue we can integrate search of journals, articles and linking to full text. These combined with Article and Document Requesting Services means a fully integrated suit of solutions is available. One-stop services are increasingly popular and we see the potential to expand the library’s capabilities in an affordable and fully supported manner.
 

North America

Our office and colleagues in the USA are also very active. They run a popular twice-weekly webinar that is hosted by the notable Guy St Clair, whose insights and inspiration is a blessing to libraries everywhere.  We are thrilled to welcome a number of prestigious companies in the fields of law and energy to Soutron. Tony Saadat and his team understand the needs of North American businesses and their perspective helps guide us to build a truly global platform. More and more collaboration is needed across borders and continents and we are mindful of how organisations wish to have a single system shared across cultures and offices. This has always been our goal and SoutronGlobal in the USA is helping us realise that ambition.
 

Holiday Support

Christmas 2014

For those who are working over Christmas remember there is an emergency number to call if you need urgent assistance. We will close the office from December 24 through to January 5. The support portal is also available to send in non-urgent requests and we will be monitoring any requests appearing there.

Thank you for all of your support and good wishes during the past year. We hope that you have a restful and peaceful holiday and you enjoy your Christmas break.

We will be back in 2015, without our colds and flu, and look forward to continue working with you.
2015 Image courtesy of cuteimage at FreeDigitalPhotos.net