Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

ERMes and Journals> What should that look like?

As planned back in September,  we’re now seeking feedback about how you would like ERMes to function as a tool to manage journals at the title level:

While the above link takes you to the ‘official’ survey questions; if I have missed a key feature or if you wish to share a narrative vision of how you want to manage journals in ERMes, please contact me: galadriel dot chilton at uconn dot edu.

Our goal is to keep this open source ERM freely available and as simple as possible given the complexities of managing e-resources and journals; your help in this endeavor is very much appreciated!

51 and Beyond

As of November 2010, 51 institutions are using ERMes to help manager their library’s e-resources. Wow. We’re humbled and amazed by this, especially considering that last November, there were 31.

Now, we’re looking forward to the 2011 release….

Thanks to ERMes user feedback, and our own experience, here are our top priorities for ERMes v.2011.05:

  • Data migration tool to aid transition to new releases of ERMes,
  • Multi-user access,
  • Web interface/accss.
  • Serials management at the title level

We’re also excited to share that we’ve identified partnerships with others to help these priorities become a reality!

We’ll begin work on v.2011.05 in early 2011; so, if you have any comments, feedback, suggests, etc, please let us know: Galadriel Chilton (chilton dot gala at uwlax dot edu) or William Doering (doering dot will at uwlax dot edu).

New Version of A to Z List

Hi ERMes Users,

I’m Jen Holman and I work with Galadriel and William at UW-La Crosse.  I know just enough about web-enabling Access databases to be dangerous, but somewhat helpful.  We use ERMes data as a backup when our A-to-Z list (currently powered by LibData from the University of Minnesota)  goes down.  Over the summer, I updated the existing ASP code to  The code is now much simpler and should be less taxing to your web server (which must be running at least ASP.Net 2.x).

Our page looks like this:

The data come from just three tables within ERMes:

To simplify matters, I created a new database (which lives on the web server) and pulled in just those three tables.  This database is in Access 2003 format with an .mdb extension.  To update the data, I just import the tables again.

The code is very simple as well:

I use SharePoint to load the database and page to our web server.  I am not sure what problems you may encounter loading this code, but please let me know.

I also have some questions for the ERMes community.  I wonder if any other campuses are using the older code?  Will you use the new code?  Is there additional functionality you would like to see in an a-to-z list?  Would anyone want to help develop new functionality, like paging?

Please respond in the comments.

A zip file containing the code and a sample database are available for download from the ERMes web site.

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.

Where in the world are ERMes users?

At 43 spots on the globe:

New Release Update

The snow is long gone and we are very, very close to releasing a new version of ERMes! We’re working to resolve a known bug, update the license, and finish a few interface tweaks. While the new version will include release notes, revised documentation will probably come a bit later. Thanks for your patience, and apologies for the delay!

The Serial Nature of Managing E-Books

While ERMes was originally designed primarily for managing aggregate databases, I have been using it to track our e-reference books and my colleague, Jen Holman has entered journal package information in ERMes.

Last week, I attended the Library Technology Conference (#LibTech2010) and one of the many great sessions I attended was “E-Book Management – It Sounds Serial!” by Carolyn J. Deluca and Dani L. Roach from University of St. Thomas.

I was buoyed to learn that they too track e-book titles in their ERM due to the serial nature of managing renewal/access fees, access URLs/problems, licensing terms, etc.

Now I know that managing e-resources like being in a fun house, but that Managing e-books is like caring for creatures on the Island of Doctor Moreau!

Coming Soon: Spring and a New Release

Here in southwest Wisconsin there is still a heavy layer of snow on the ground with a significant likelihood that more snow will fall before the daffodils bloom. However, there are subtle hints that there will someday be a thaw — birds are singing again, we had 4 days in a row with temperatures above 32 degrees Fahrenheit, and a new version of ERMes is in the works.

While I cannot predict exactly when spring will come, I can say with more certainty that we hope to send forth a new version of ERMes by the time the snow melts.

Here is a short list of what’s has been done or is in progress:

The Biggest Thing

Thanks to our colleague, Jen Holman, the biggest enhancement that we are working on is a user-side A-Z list! Before SFX, Jen taught herself ASP [wow!] so that she could generate a periodicals holdings list for Murphy Library. Last year, Jen created code for an A-Z list that we used as a back-up for our LibData-generated A-Z list.

Now, she has graciously agreed to upgrade her skills to ASP.NET and help turn this back-up A-Z list into our primary A-Z list. In the meantime, William and I are creating more data entry fields, reports, and updating the documentation.

New Reports

  1. List by Subscription Status
  2. Databases by Subject
  3. Count by Database Type

A Few of the New Data Entry Fields

  1. Database Description
  2. Database Type (e.g. Full Text, Index and Abstracts, etc.)
  3. Database Full Text Counts by Type (e.g. Scholarly, Magazines, etc.)
  4. Contract Start, Contract End, and Invoice Number

In the coming weeks, we’ll be asking ERMes users to rank other enhancement ideas, but in the meantime, please tell us what’s on your ERMes wish list.

What would like ERMes to do? What little or big tweak would make your e-resource management world just a little bit brighter?

Happy 31st ERMes!

I’m pleased to welcome Nicolet Area Technical College (Rhinelander, WI) as ERMes’ 31st user!

It is exciting to know that ERMes seems to be a little ERM that could, and to know that institutions around the world (yes the world!) use it.

As the fall semester winds down, I’m looking forward to the holiday break as a time to answer user questions via updated documentation.

In the meantime, thank you for your interest in, and use of ERMes; in just 1.5 years we’ve gone from this…


Database of Databases

…to this…


ERM Blueprint Spring 2008

…to this!

ERMes Switchboard

ERMes 200905 Switchboard

What ERMes did on Summer Vacation

Though it may appear to have been a quiet summer for ERMes due to the lack of blog posts, ERMes was busy:

  • I just finished a data audit of our e-resources in which I added and migrated more data to  ERMes. In other words, I made ERMes work hard and while these activities ignited new excitement for finally having an e-resource management system, it also fostered ideas for ERMes’ future. I have a growing list of enhancements from ERMes users that I added to, and I’m overwhelmed thrilled how – after using ERMes for multiple budget cycles – having such a system forces supports evaluation of e-resource management work flow.
  • The September 2009 issues of Computers in Libraries includes a follow-up to last year’s article: “ERMes: Open Source Simplicity for Your E-Resource Management.” A big thank you to my colleague, William Doering for initiating the article-writing and letting me tag along, and to Jenifer Holman, Norma J. Dowell, Anna Hulesburg, Tessa L.H. Michew, and Qinghua Xu for providing user feedback for the article!

In coming weeks, I’ll be sharing more about these summer adventures, but in the meantime, happy fall everyone!

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