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Subject: Next Service Date
Date: 3/31/2006

I learned something new at the KLAS Users Conference in Salt Lake City this past week, and I wanted to pass it on to you.

In the Patron module, on the Profile tab, each individual media has a field associated with it called the Next Service Date (located in the bottom left of the screen). The Nightly Services programs, which assign books to patrons based on their requests and preferences, use that Next Service Date to determine whether an attempt should be made to serve the patron.

If the Next Service Date is today, or any day previous to today, the Nightly Programs will attempt to serve the patron. If the Next Service Date is in the future, the Nightly Programs will hold off any service attempt until that date.

So - what does this mean for you and your patrons? It means you have another means to temporarily halt service for your patron.

Let's say you have a patron who says she would rather not get any books until she comes back from vacation. One way to deal with this would be to update the status for the media on the profile screen, making each one of them inactive. You would then have to change them back to active status on the patron's return. Or, you could update each media and change the Next Service Date to the time the patron is back from vacation. This would put the patron in the Nightly Service processing automatically at that time.

Two notes to remember about this.

  1. If you have a patron with more than one media, such as Cassette and Descriptive Video, you would need to update both entries in the profile to reflect the new Next Service Date.
  2. Changing the Next Service Date will not affect reserves, so those would go out. This includes any series reserves that are created when you check in a book that is part of the series. (Making the profile Inactive would stop reserves from going out.)