Archive for the 'Instructions' Category

Implementing ERMes: Part 1

As I mentioned in my last post, I am excited to explore the applicability of ERMes as an e-resource management system at the University of Connecticut. While I have yet to determine if ERMes is the right ERM for the long-term, I am planning an immediate implementation of ERMes because:

  1. UConn Libraries’ existing home-grown ERM is primarily used to generate an A-Z list and subject pages.
  2. The existing ERM does not have reports and the reports in ERMes are integral to my work!
  3. Though UConn has a great ITS team and a programmer to support the existing ERM, I do not have the skills to quickly customize it on my own.
  4. The existing ERM does not include cost information, but does include nearly all of the data entry fields listed in the DLF ERM Initiative’s Electronic Resource Management System Data. Structure. This means that the system is quite complex and includes more unused fields than used fields.
  5. I need to quickly gain an understanding of UConn’s e-resource collection and using a system I already know will save time.
  6. If ERMes is not appropriate as a long-term ERM, I will have all the e-resource data in one place which will make it much easier to migrate to another ERM.

With that said, I will be documenting my implementation process with hopes that doing so will help other users!

The following installment is short, but shows how I have a back-up instance of ERMes, and how I customize the Preliminary Information tables for Access and Source.

The Access table is intended identifies which campuses, locations, or groups that have access to an e-resource while the Source table identifies who is paying subscription and purchase fees. But of course, because it is ERMes, these fields can be customized and changed to match your needs!

Movie IconImplementing ERMes Video: Part 1


Note: For more detailed instructions and information about implementing ERMes, please see the instructions and release notes on the ERMes website.

ERMes Webinars

William and I have arranged for our staff library services organization (Wisconsin Library Services, WiLS) to host two free ERMes info/training sessions.  Below are descriptions of each session and a link to register, but if you have any questions please let us know ( or  We are particularly interested in the September 16th sessions as this will help us with future ERMes development.

WiLS is hosting two session on ERMes, the Open Source Electronic Resource Management System developed by William Doering of UW-La Crosse to help Galadriel Chilton help manage their campuses Electronic Resources.   The first session on September 10 is primarily intended for people who are interested in, but not currently using ERMes.  The second session on September 16 is an update for current users.

September 10, 2010; 2:00-3:30 CDT
Introduction to ERMes
(Open Source Electronic Resource Management System)
In spring 2008, William Doering created a basic ERM system (see flyer) to help Galadriel Chilton manage the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse’s Electronic Resources. Now in its third release, ERMes is used by nearly 43 libraries world-wide. In this informational session, Bill and Galadriel will share the history and goals of ERMes, discuss what ERMes can and cannot do, and answer participant questions about this freely available e-resource management tool. Register for free session.

September 16, 2010; 2:00-3:30 CDT
The New ERMes

With the primary release of ERMes 2010.05 available, William Doering and Galadriel Chilton wish to provide ERMes users with an update of their ideas for this open source ERMS. Because their goal is to drive enhancements from user needs, this session will consist of a brief overview of future plans as well as significant time for discussion and questions. Please feel free to submit questions and discussion topics prior to the event ( or Register for free session.

A Place for ERMes Users

If you use or are interested in ERMes and would like to converse with other users, there is a Google Group just for you!

This group is a forum for user-to-user interaction be it theoretical discussions about e-resource management or practical questions about data entry in ERMes.

Customizing ERMes: Creating New Data Entry Fields

So you’re using ERMes and need to add a field or two to match your institution’s needs and workflow.

Adding fields to ERMes is not difficult, but it is a two or three-step process. Two steps if you want basic text fields, and three steps if you want to format the field type (e.g. date) and/or the form labels.

Here are three short videos that show this process. Unfortunately, the video quality is not great, but I hope it will provide enough information to get you started. While I’ve embedded the videos below, you can see more detail when viewing the videos on YouTube in full screen mode.

  1. First, you will need to add the field(s) to the appropriate ERMes table (e.g. Database_Cost_History) like this:

  2. Then, add these fields to the form that matches (e.g. Database_Cost_History) the table like this:

  3. Optionally, you can customize the table field data type (e.g. Date/Time) and format the form field labels like this:

Instructions> ERMes v. 2009.05

Basic instructions for ERMes v. 2009.05 are now available on the ERMes website. As with most documents, I could keep writing for a long time; however, I also think that it is in the best interest of ERMes users for me to post what we have and consider the instructions – like ERMes – a work in progress.

I plan to continue adding text, illustrations, and short video demos as I am able. I know that Norma is also working to include a video demonstration to support her instructions for creating COUNTER reports in ERMes.

Please feel free to…

  • Let me know what additional documentation you want/need; so, that I can prioritize by demand.
  • Download the MS Word version of the instructions, add to or edit them, and then send your revisions to me so that I can incorporate them into the ‘master’ version.


ERMes Website

Download the latest version of ERMes, get instructions, etc.

Author Affiliations

Galadriel Chilton, Electronic Resources Management Librarian, University of Connecticut

William Doering, Systems, Catalog & Digital Initiatives Librarian, University of Wisconsin - La Crosse

Norma J. Dowell, Library Assistant IV, Iowa State University

Jen Holman, Periodicals & Acquisitions Librarian, University of Wisconsin - La Crosse

Anna Hulseberg, Academic Librarian, Gustavus Adolphus College

ERMes Users

Alverno College Library

Baker College

Beloit College

Bethel University

Birmingham City University

Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health

Capella University

Cardinal Stritch University

Carleton College

Carroll University

Deerfield Academy

Drake University

Florida Institute of Technology

Georgia Perimeter College

Gustavus Adolphus College

Harrisburg Area Community College

Illinois Wesleyan University

Indian Institute of Management Bangalore

Iowa State University

Irish Research eLibrary

Lincoln University (Lincoln, New Zealand)

Loyola University Health Science Library

Manhattanville College

Monterey Peninsula College

National Science Foundation

Nicolet Area Technical College

Northern Michigan University

Northwestern College

Oakton Community College

Presbyterian College

Ripon College

Rivier College

St. Norbert College

Southwestern College

Springfield College

SUNY-Rockland Community College

Technical University of Denmark

University of Alabama in Huntsville

University of Idaho

University of the Pacific - Stockton

University of Wisconsin-Colleges

University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh

University of Wisconsin-Platteville

University of Wisconsin-River Falls

Viterbo University

Walden University

Wisconsin Department of Employee Trust Funds

ERMes Articles & Presentations

Presentation: The ERMes Story: A Work in Progress (Galadriel Chilton) part of Open to Change: Open Source and Next Generation ILS and ERMS
ALA Annual, Washington, DC, June 2010

Presentation: The ERMes Story: A Work in Progress (Galadriel Chilton)
Minnesota Innovative Users Group Conference, October 2009

Article: ERMes: Open Source Simplicity for Your E-Resource Management By William Doering and Galadriel Chilton
Computers in Libraries 29(8), September 2009

Presentation: Keeping It All Together: One Library's Strategy for Electronic Resource Management (William Doering)
WAAL, April 2009

Presentation: Getting a Handle on E-Resource Management: An ERM Panel (Galadriel Chilton)
Library Technology Conference 2009, March 2009

Article: A Locally Created ERM: How and Why We Did It By William Doering and Galadriel Chilton
Computers in Libraries 28(8), September 2008

May 2021