I Never Liked The Bumper Sticker: Question Authority


This blog post comes from Martha Rice Sanders, Senior Consultant at Innovative

Frankly, I would much prefer a bumper sticker stating: Authorize Questions. Because from subjects, to names, to places and uniform titles, I love doing the detective work to authorize everything so our library users find what they seek!

I fell in love with authority control work during my first library job – cataloging sound recordings for the University of Illinois Music Library. This work delights me still. And I’ve worked in libraries for 35 years (24 of them using Innovative systems!)

During my last 12 years, I worked in the office of a library consortium, helping the member libraries with their cataloging, managing authority control in the system, and managing Innovative’s consortial ERM functions.

This prepared me well for my role at Innovative when I joined the Consulting team 18 months ago. Now I spend my days helping libraries around the world successfully use authority control, including the headings reports, in Millennium and Sierra, in addition to other responsibilities. I teach workshops, consult directly with libraries, and do presentations at conferences, including IUG.

So what questions do you have about authority work? Some of the ones I’ve been asked during workshops and consultations include:

  • How do I customize series to make them work best for my patrons?
  • How do I recreate headings reports in Sierra or Millennium?
  • Why do valid entries show up in my invalid headings report?
  • How does Automatic Authority Control Processing work?
  • How do I justify the cost of using an authority control vendor?
  • How do I prepare for the change from authorities to identities?

Whatever your questions may be, my colleagues and I look forward to helping you answer them. Wondering about using the tools for doing authority control in your Innovative system? About best practices in working with a vendor on authority control? About preparing your metadata for BibFrame and Linked Data? We’re ready and excited to work with you!

I hope you’ll join me for my next online Authority Control workshop for Sierra and Millennium, Dec. 5-7. (It will also be available three more times during 2018.) In February 2018, my colleague Nannette Naught will be leading a free Hot Topic: Metadata Management Basics, and, for those wanting to delve deeper, the six-session Metadata Bootcamp later that month.

So, bring on the questions and, together, we’ll find the answers! Questions? Thoughts? Write to me at martha.sanders@iii.com