On Tuesday, March 15th I landed in San Francisco and headed for the Hilton Conference Center. The IUG Conference started the next day at 9:00 am in the morning. After waking up at 3 in the morning, because I was still on the east coast time. I had plenty of time to get ready for the 1st agenda of the day, the Keynote presentation “Wide open: on culture, literacy, and the challenge of change” by Don Levy. He was an engaging and entertaining speaker. After his presentation, there was a business meeting. The Innovative Management Team ( https://www.iii.com/about/team) was introduced. Chief Executive Officer James Tallman, took the stage and presented how Innovative is doing at the present time and what the future holds for the company. He was hired 6 months ago. I was impressed in how much he learned about Innovative with that short time period. He announced that the Innovative acquired Polaris Library systems. One of the things he talked about that caught my attention was the fact that Innovative was not only using the cloud technology but is making sure to not discount all the other technologies.
The workshops started later in the afternoon on Wednesday. Many of the workshops that I attended had power points associated with them. If you are interested in any of them let me know and I can send them to you. (that is if the presenter left it)
Here are the workshops I went to
- Mobile Worklist: Collection Maintenance made simple.
- Getting Started with Autolt.
- Circulation Forum.
- What’s New and Ahead for Sierra/Millennium: Innovative product update and roadmap.
- Bootcamp for Circulation: Back to Basics
- Managing Library Student Workers.
Although they all were informative, the two that I liked the best where “What’s new and Ahead for Sierra/Millennium…” and “Managing Student Workers.”.
Leif Pedersen, Executive Vice President-Product who is part of the Innovative Management Team, presented “What’s new and ahead…was a “roadmap” to where Innovative was going with their products. This is a session that they do every conference. They are moving forward with updates, patches and so forth with Sierra but at some point they will not be doing that with Millennium. Eventually all platforms will merge into one Innovative solution. That’s years down the road; as technology advances they want to meet it with a new product that can utilize all those advances.
“Managing Library Student Workers” is another one that they do every conference. Dorothy Hargett, The Access Services Supervisor of Regent University presented this session with wit and enthusiasm. She spoke to a crowd of mostly student worker supervisors. It was refreshing to hear that many of the issues both bad and good that happens at Middlebury College are common in all other institutes.
Innovative has several products but supports three Library services platform, Millennium, Sierra and now Polaris. Please click on each one to see the details. As I said above Millennium is slowly going out of style. Sierra would be the natural replacement. After talking to several people who made the transformation, they all indicated that it was an easy transfer and some libraries didn’t have to do any training because it was so similar to Millennium. I never heard of Polaris so I talked to Dennis Todd, the Senior Sales Engineer for Polaris. He recommended this site http://polaris.iiidiscovery.com/ and he also gave me a University that uses Polaris, University of Sioux Falls. Click on it will bring you to their Library site. Please take a look at these different products and make comments below.