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Best practices for managing subscriptions

Discover tips and best practices for managing your subscriptions in WorldShare Acquisitions.

  Learn more in a Community Center presentation: WorldShare Acquisitions Best Practices: Managing subscriptions (Requires Community Center login)

Overview

WorldShare Acquisitions is not just for one-time purchases, but can also help you manage your subscriptions. There is increasing value in managing subscriptions in WorldShare Acquisitions, including:

  • Providing a clear record of ordering, renewal, cancellation, receiving, and invoicing of subscribed resources.
  • Managing subscription-related workflows.
  • Keeping all financial transactions in one place (rather than in spreadsheets, etc.).
  • Ability to reference acquisition data later (e.g. Did I pay for the invoice for that subscription?).
  • Can run reports and analytics on subscription data.
  • Can import EDIFACT invoices for subscriptions to save time.
  • Can synchronize invoices in WMS with campus system (via APIs or the Accounting System Invoice Connector)
  • Can ensure you do not go over your budget for subscriptions.
  • Can track how much you spend on each department for subscriptions.

Subscription resources you can order include:

  • WorldCat resources (print periodicals)
  • Knowledge Base eResources (ePeriodicals, eBooks, eCollections)
  • Local resources (supplies, memberships, etc.)

This Best Practices guide will go over the basic information needed for entering subscriptions into WMS for the first time and then receiving and invoicing these subscriptions.

Add subscriptions to a new order

Begin by searching for an item using the Discover Items, Discover Collections or Local Resources in the left navigation.

  1. From the search results, find the record for the title you want to order and click Add to > Order.
  2. From the Add Item to Order dialog window, select the following settings:
    • Acquisition Type - Subscription
    • Processing Type 
      • Electronic Product (for all eResources, e.g. ePeriodicals, eBooks, eCollections, etc.)
      • Serial (for print serials)
      • Monographic series (for details on Monographic series, see Add a monographic series to an order)
      • Local
  3. Add any additional information about the order (ISSN, Period, Start Date, and End Date) or apply a template

     Note: Start Date and End Date are particularly important fields to add when entering subscriptions. For simplicity, it is recommended to add Start Date and End Date at this point rather than later in the process.

  4. Click New Order.
  5. In the Add New Order dialog, select Purchase Order for Order Type and complete the other fields as needed.
    Add New Order fields - Table
    Field Description
    Order Name (required) Give a meaningful and unique name to avoid confusion with other orders. Follow local practice.
    Order Type (required) Select the type of order from the list:
    Order Type Description
    Approval Plan List of items received as part of an agreement with supplier to send items based on a profile. The library retains the right to return items not needed.
    Blanket Order List of items received as part of an agreement with a supplier to send items based on a profile. Vendors do not allow the return of items.
    DDA (Demand Driven Acquisitions) Plan List of items received as part of an agreement with supplier to trigger purchase of online materials based on patron usage.
    Gift/Donation List List of items received from a specific person or organization for free or at little cost to the library.
    Legal Deposit List List of items received as part of an arrangement with a governmental entity to keep some or all of its publications at the library.
    Purchase Order List of items created by library to be submitted to supplier.
    Standing Order List of items received as part of an agreement with supplier to send items belonging to a series or specific publication.
    Vendor (not required for purchase orders) As you type, the system automatically suggests vendor names from those listed as in use in Vendors.

    Enter the vendor name in quotes (e.g., "Le Jour") to perform an exact phrase search. Exact phrase searching is useful in cases where the vendor name ends in a word that may match a number of other words in a vendor name (e.g., Le Jour matches vendor names that contain the word Journal).
    Vendor PO # (number) Add the order number from the vendor, if known. Follow local practice.
    Tax Handling Select a tax calculation method from the drop-down list.
    Tax calculation method Description
    Tax item cost Calculates tax amount by multiplying tax percentage by the price
    Tax item, service charge, and shipping cost Calculates tax amount by multiplying tax percentage by the price, service charges, and shipping
    Includes taxes in costs Calculates tax amount by considering it as included in the price, service charges, and shipping
    Comments Add any notes about the order. Follow local practice.
  6. Click Save. The new order will appear in the Existing Orders table.
  7. Click Add to add the item to the newly created order.
  8. (Optional) Click the Order Name to enter details for the order item (e.g., Fund, Location, Price, etc.), if not added in the Item Details accordion of a template.

For information on searching by specific type of resource, please see:

Order item templates

Applying an order item template when adding an item to an order can be helpful for a number of reasons:

  • It allows you to pre-fill information saved in the template to that order item.
  • It enables the Item details accordion for the item, allowing you to add item details at the time of adding the item to the order rather than having to save and return to the item.
  • Some vendors, e.g. EBSCO, can provide a file that includes you subscription information as barcodes, which can be used to scan in information.

To learn how to create a new order item template, see Create an order item template.

 Note: After applying an order item template, you still may override values in the template or enter values not in the template. 

Apply an order item template 

  1. On the Add Item to Order window, change the settings as needed. See Add subscriptions to a new order for more information on available settings.
  2. From the Apply Order Template list, click the template you want to apply.
  3. Check and edit the details in Item Details (Template: [name]). You can edit or apply the following fields to an order item when using an order item template.

     Note: Using the Item Details accordion to add a value in the Vendor Order Item Number field for each item is especially helpful if you plan to import EDIFACT invoices for subscriptions later.

    Available fields in an order item template - Table
    Tab Editable field
    General
    • Requestor
    • Display in WorldCat
    Order
    • Vendor Order Item Number
    Location
    • Quantity
    • Branch
    • Location
    Pricing
    • Unit Price
    • % | Discount
    • % | Service Charges
    • % | Shipping
    • % | Tax 1
    • % | Tax 2
    Budget/Fund
    • Allocate by
    • Budget(s)
    • Fund(s)
    • Percentage
    Notes Any existing notes.
    Custom Fields
    • Staff name
    • Priority
    • Date Returned
    • Academic Department
  4. To add the item to the order, click Add in the Action column (at right).
  5. Click Close.

Note that if you enter any values in the Item Details section when applying a template, these will remain in effect during your session until you select a new template or manually enter new values.

Place the order

Before placing an order: Open the order, complete any edits, and click Save Order at the top of the screen.

  1. Click Place Order.
  2. In the Place Order window, follow local practice to determine whether you check the box to notify the vendor about this order.
    • Yes - Place order and notify the vendor
      1. Select the check box.
      2. Click Continue.
      3. Go to step 3.
    • No - Place order, but do not notify the vendor
      1. Do not check the box.
      2. Click Place Order
      3. The order is placed.
  3. In the Notify Vendor about Order window, fill in the following fields:
    1. Method - The method you choose to notify the vendor of the order.
      1. E-Mail (EDIFACT): Send an EDIFACT order message via email. Before using this method, read Configure EDIFACT messages for a vendor for configuration information.
      2. E-Mail (HTML): Send your order via email.
      3. Print: Print your order to send via mail.
      4. FTP (EDIFACT): Send an EDIFACT order message via FTP. Before using this method, read Configure EDIFACT messages for a vendor for configuration information.
    2. To (E-Mail or Print) - The person or department at the vendor who will receive your notification of an order.
    3. Reply to (E-Mail (HTML) or Print) - The person at your library that the vendor can contact about your order.
      • The default is the first person listed on the Contacts page in OCLC Service Configuration (WorldCat Registry > Contacts).
      • You can set a recurring contact for when vendors reply to an order in the Institution Settings for your system. For more information, see Create a recurring reply-to contact.
      • You can set a default method and vendor contact by editing the Acquisitions Settings in the vendor record. For more information, see Acquisitions Settings.
  4. The method you choose determines the next step.
    1. Email (EDIFACT and HTML) and FTP (EDIFACT)
      1. (Optional) To preview the message, select Preview message before sending and click Continue.
      2. Click Send Order.
      3. Check the order status to confirm that the order was successful. 
        • An order status that remains set to Open indicates that there was an error and the order was not sent to the vendor.
        • An order status set to Placed indicates that the order notification was sent to the vendor. For FTP (EDIFACT) orders, this confirms that the order was successfully delivered to the target FTP server. For email (EDIFACT and HTML) orders, the system can only confirm that the notification was accepted by the outgoing SMTP server, but cannot account for other errors, e.g. an incorrect email address.
    2. Print
      1. Click Continue.
      2. From the Print Preview dialog, click Print Order.

Receive subscriptions

It is recommended to use the bulk receive option in the order item search when receiving subscriptions. 

Partially receive multiple items

Partially receiving items will indicate that you have started, but not fully received, the content for the subscription.

  1. Search order items using the instructions under Search and filter order items.
  2. Select the checkboxes next to the items you want to update. If you want to update all items in the table, select the checkbox at the top of the table.
  3. At the top of the screen, click Receive > Partially Receive.
  4. From the Receive dialog, click Partially Receive.

Receive multiple items

Receiving items will indicate that the entire subscription has been received. 

  1. Search order items using the instructions under Search and filter order items.
  2. Select the checkboxes next to the items you want to update. If you want to update all items in the table, select the checkbox at the top of the table.
  3. At the top of the screen, click Receive > Receive.
  4. From the Receive dialog, click Receive.

Do not track receipt status

You can choose Do Not Track when you do not want to track the receipt status of your subscriptions. This receipt status can be inherited when renewing so that you do not need to re-set it each year.

Follow the instructions below to not track the Receipt Status of a serial or e-product item from the Order items or Subscription items screen.

  1. Search order items using one of the methods described on the Search and filter order items page.
  2. Select the check boxes next to the items you want to not track. If you want to not track all items in the table, select the check box at the top of the table.
  3. At the top of the screen, click Receive > Do Not Track.
  4. From the Do Not Track dialog, click Do Not Track.

Invoice subscriptions 

You can add items that you previously ordered to an invoice. This process occurs on the receive and invoice screen in Acquisitions and is different than adding items that you have not ordered to an invoice. To see how to add items directly to an invoice (without ordering first), see Add items directly to an invoice (without ordering first).

Find ordered items to invoice

  1. From the left navigation, click Receive and Invoice.
  2. Select a processing type from the Processing Type drop-down list.
    • E-Product - All e-products
    • Local - One Time - A physical or nonphysical item that does not belong in WorldCat or the knowledge base (e.g., membership, furniture, office supplies, technology, etc.) that is received in a single transaction
    • Local - Subscription - A physical or nonphysical item that does not belong in WorldCat or the knowledge base (e.g., membership, furniture, office supplies, technology, etc.) that is received continually
    • Monograph - Monographs where only one barcode is applied
    • Serial - Print serials and multi-part monographs where multiple barcodes are applied
  3. Select Invoice from the Action drop-down list.
  4. Click View Items.
  5. Click the Search Text form field and then press <Enter>.
  6. Find the items you want to invoice.

    Find a specific item
    1. Select a search filter from the Search drop-down list.
    2. Enter the barcode, ISBN, ISSN, OCLC number, or title, using the Search Text form field. Search results appear automatically when you stop typing.
    3. To return to the list of outstanding items, delete all text from the Search Text form field.
    4. Barcode searches are possible only after importing shelf ready data. See Import invoice and shelf-ready data.
       
    Find all items on an order
    1. Select Order Number from the Search drop-down list.
    2. Enter the full order number (PO number), including "PO" and dashes (-), in the Search Text form field. Search results appear automatically when you stop typing.
    3. To return to the list of outstanding items, delete all text from the Search Text form field.
  7. You may also narrow your search by one of the filters below.
    Search filters - Table
    To search by Use retrieval method
    Search Select an index with which to limit your search from the list:
    • Keyword
    • Title (default)
    • Copy Number
    • Barcode
    • OCLC Number
    • Invoice Number
    • ISBN
    • ISSN
    • Order Item Number
    • Order Number
    Content Type Select the content type of the item from the list.
    • To return to the list of all items, select the blank space in the list.
    Branch Select the branch the item is to be delivered to from the list.
    • The branch is in the Location column on the order.
    • To return to the list of outstanding items, select the blank space in the list.
    Order Status (not available for editing when action is set to Receive) Select the degree to which the order has been placed:
    • Ordered
    • Cancellation requested
    • Not cancelled
    • Cancelled
    Receipt Status Select the degree to which the order has been completed. Differs by processing type.
    Purchase Status Select the degree to which invoicing has been completed:
    • Not invoiced
    • Partially invoiced
    • Invoiced
    • Partially paid
    • Paid

​Select new or existing invoice on which to add ordered items

In order to invoice items, you must either create a new invoice, which would then be selected by default, or select an existing invoice. 

Create a new invoice

  1. From the Receive and Invoice panel, click New Invoice.
  2. Enter the Vendor, Invoice Number, and Invoice Date of the invoice.
  3. Click Save. This invoice will then be automatically selected for use.

​Select an existing invoice

  1. Select the vendor.
    • Enter the vendor name into the Vendor search box in the left panel. As you type, a list will appear showing the vendors in use that match your search.
      • If a vendor does not appear, make sure the vendor is listed as In use in Vendors.
  2. Select the invoice.
    • Type the invoice number into the Invoice Number search box. As you type, a list will appear showing the vendors in use that match your search.

​Add a previously ordered item to invoice

There are several ways to add a previously ordered item to an invoice.

You can invoice all copies of an order item or only some copies of an order item. Invoicing only some copies of an item will leave the order price of the un-invoiced copies still encumbered on the budget (as long as the order is of type Purchase Order).

There are five invoice item types:

  • Full invoice items: These cover 100% cost of the copies being invoiced. When the invoice is paid, the entire order price of the copies is dis-encumbered.
  • Partial invoice items: These cover a percentage of the copies being invoiced. When the invoice is paid, any percentage not invoiced is still encumbered for the ordered items.
  • Supplemental invoice items: These cover any additional costs for an item that was already invoiced previously. You can only create a supplemental invoice item for an item whose invoice percentage is 100%.
  • Credit invoice items: These allow the vendor to provide a credit that you can use to purchase future items from them.
  • Refund invoice items: These are similar to credit items, but in this case, the vendor refunds the money paid to the library for use in any way they wish, not just to purchase items from them.

Fully invoice all copies

This describes the process for invoicing all copies of an item fully. This is the typical way of invoicing an item.

  1. After finding the ordered item to invoice and selecting the invoice, you will need to add the items to the invoice.
  2. In the Invoiced column, click Add to Invoice. The Add Item to Invoice dialog window opens, with the Pay Option Pay in full selected by default.
  3. Click Add in the Add Item to Invoice window. The item moves to be the new first line of the Items processed in this session. 100% appears in the invoice column.

Partial invoice items

You can also choose to partially invoice items. This method of invoicing is used when you are paying for an item in installments and only want part of the order price to be disencumbered upon payment. For instructions on partially invoicing items, please see the following sections:

View current subscriptions

  1. On the left navigation, click Orders.
  2. Click Subscription Items.
  3. Use the search box to search for subscription items.
    1. Type the search term in the box.
    2. Click Search or press <Enter>.
  4. Apply filters to subscription items. You may want to add a budget period filter with the current budget period selected, or filter by end date to show items approaching the subscription end date.
    1. Click the filter name.
    2. Select the values you want to apply. You can select one or more. When more than one value is selected, the system searches for any of the selected values.
    3. Click Apply. Once the filter is applied, you can hover over the filter name to view the selected values.
  5. (Optional) Click Save Search.
    1. On the Save Search window, enter a name for the search.
    2. Click Save. The search name appears in the page title and displays in a search tab.
  6. To execute the saved search in the future, click Orders > Order item searches in the left navigation. Then click the name of the saved search.