August 2019

Changes Coming to Automatic Checkout on ODL

A forthcoming update to the Ohio Digital Library explained by our fantastic State Library rep:

There are some changes coming to automatic checkout in the near future. Currently, patrons can decide if they want titles on hold to be checked out when they are available without the patron having to manually check it out. Unfortunately as some patrons discover, multiple holds seem to come in at once. I’m firmly in this camp because I had 5 holds come in last week when I didn’t have time to read any of them!

Coming soon, OverDrive will give patrons the choice to either check out the available hold immediately, or to suspend their hold temporarily. The patron should have 72 hours to make the decision after they receive the notification email. If it is not a good time for them to read the title, a patron can suspend it, be put back on the hold list in the first position, and the title will be released to the next person waiting. Then, when the title is available for the initial patron, they are able to decide again if they want to suspend it again. If the patron doesn’t make a decision after the initial notification email they will be given a “courtesy bump” that will automatically move them to the first position in the hold line and release the title to the next person waiting. This courtesy bump will only occur once. If the patron doesn’t make a selection after the second notification email, their hold will be cancelled and they would need to put themselves back on the hold list.

Speaking of suspending holds, most library ILSs are able to “freeze” or place “vacation holds” on physical items but were you aware that you can suspend holds in ODL? Here is a link to the tutorial, Many patrons are already using suspended holds to ensure holds don’t come in for them when they don’t have time to read them. Only once they are ready, do they unsuspend the hold. Personally, I try to suspend most of my holds so I only have a few titles checked out at any one time. But sometimes I forget and have multiple holds available at the same time!

This change to automatic checkouts is supposed to roll out sometime in October or November, but there is not a clear date for it yet. Just something to keep in mind and I’ll let you know when I learn more!