Primo WG Update, December 2020

The IGeLU Primo Working Group has had several membership changes in recent months. This included farewelling two valued members; our Coordinator Knut Anton Bøckman (Royal Danish Library), who was a successful candidate to the IGeLU Steering Committee, and Amin Hussain (University of Manchester). We again extend thanks to both Knut and Amin for their years of active service to the community as members of the IGeLU Primo WG. As a result of these departures, we first had a range of changes to responsibilities for remaining members, including Stacey van Groll (University of Queensland) moving to Coordinator, Lee Houghton (University of Nottingham) accepted the role of Deputy Coordinator, and Boaz Dotan (University of Haifa) agreed to step into the Liaison to the Analytics group role. We then had an open call for new members to the Primo list, and we were pleased to announce to the community our new member, Jennifer McNally (University of Salford & WHELF). Jenny immediately stepped up to be our Liaison to the Linked Open Data group, which is a first-time connection point to this group, and it’s wonderful to enter the new year 2021 with a strong engaged group and clear liaison points. Our full current member list and our roles are available here:

We are in a quieter time of year now in terms of the yearly Enhancements Process, after our announcement to the community in September for the successful submissions for the Primo NERS 2020 round. Our further discussions with Ex Libris on the technicalities on delivering the 2020 winners have been a little slower than usual this year, given the NERS voting process was held later and open longer, in response to community feedback for the demands and competing priorities of COVID-19 across our globally affected sites.

A recap of 2020 winners, as advised to the community:
6718 Add Journal Coverage Dates to Brief Results Page (Votes: 6550 Dev. Points: 70)
6440 Create spinner or indicator for GetIt frame to indicate content is loading (Votes: 5347 Dev. Points: 5)
6702 Ability to dedup or FRBR between local data and CDI data (Votes: 5217 Dev. Points: 50)
• The solution will allow more control for customers by not grouping the results, but rather allowing more control on the activation side such as to not include a Book package from CDI, which will mean no duplicates with the local Books, but to choose to still include all the Book Chapters of that package
4457 Fix indexing of words with hyphens (e.g. hand-book, etc.) (Votes: 4017 Dev. Points: 25)
• The solution will be for a closed list, not any hyphenated term

We were also pleased and appreciative to advise of the following additional items, which Ex Libris Product Management agreed to add to the 2021 Roadmap, of the remaining votable submissions in Round 2:
6637 Extend customization options for all request forms (Primo VE) (Votes: 2309 Dev. Points: 40)
6710 Add support for microlanguages ISO 639-3 and language codes recognised by Library of Congress (Votes: 1067 Dev Points: 60)
6552 Add 505$t to Primo VE TOC and Title indexes (Votes: 1173 Dev. Points: 10)

It was also a stellar round in terms of community engagement with the enhancement process overall, with the most votes ever cast in Round 1 of 36,087 and 36,625 in Round 2 in 2020.

And we must acknowledge that we could not achieve such a successful and smooth running enhancement process on behalf of the community, and in collaboration with Ex Libris and the ELUNA Primo Working Group, without the dedication and organisation of our Enhancement Coordinators, Bettina Kaldenberg (IGeLU) and Geri Rinna (ELUNA), and all our WG members on the Enhancements Team.

We also were pleased to see finalised the last remaining 2019 Primo NERS winner in the November 2020 Release, and can advise now of the full delivery timelines for the 2019 enhancements process:
6230: Enable option to favour latest edition of bibliographic work to top the FRBR group – Delivered for Primo VE in May 2020 and Primo on Back Office in November 2020
6190: Export search results to Excel/csv – Delivered for both Primo VE and Primo on Back Office in August 2020
6125: Sticky facets by default – Delivered for both Primo VE and Primo on Back Office in May 2020
6184: Make it possible to override Start Harvest date for Delete and ReLoad pipes – Delivered for Primo on Back Office in May 2020, and n/a for Primo VE (as no pipes)
6290: Improve NUI user actions on mobile devices – Delivered for both Primo VE and Primo on Back Office in February 2020

For this 2019 round also, Ex Libris agreed to fulfill another votable submission which was not a “winner”, which was delivered in Primo via Back Office in February 2020 and Primo VE in July 2020: 6341 Set automatically the cursor in the search box

Our members also continue to work on advocacy and collaborative initiatives internally, and across our IGeLU and ELUNA communities, and with Ex Libris. Notable recent work items between Working Groups and Steering Committees include giving input on the Enhancements Task Force and a review of the Ex Libris / ELUNA / IGeLU Product Agreement, and a proposed new CDI Advisory Group, for all our community groups to work together on product impacts, in recognition that the CDI transition is not only about “content”. Our Primo WG also raised to the Steering Committee and to Ex Libris Product Management directly the community-wide issue of the coming angularjs end of support in 2021. We were pleased to be advised that Ex Libris is currently in an investigative phase for scoping and planning, with a high awareness of impacts on community local configurations, and also to have clear confirmation of Ex Libris ongoing commitment to mitigating any arising security issues both now and into the future. We are currently awaiting publication to the community of a paper by Ex Libris Product Management, at which point we can more actively engage with both Ex Libris and the developer community to support all sites in this area over the next few years.

We also raised with the Steering Committee the question of continuing the MetaLib product in our Primo WG range of responsibilities. It was agreed to best serve the interests of the community that the MetaLib component would be removed from the Primo Working Group and that the IGeLU Chair ( will now be the escalation point for any issues or problems with the MetaLib product. See:

As a final point of current and ongoing advocacy efforts on behalf of the community, we continue to work closely with Ex Libris and our ELUNA Primo WG colleagues on the topic of the different deployment models for Primo; being the newer Primo VE model on the Alma Higher Education platform and the ‘classic’ Primo managed via the Back Office interface. We remain committed to advocating for all members of our Primo community, including in their autonomy to choose their discovery environment and management model for their users and staff, and supporting those going live on Primo VE or wishing to transition to Primo VE. We strive to work collaboratively with Ex Libris Product Management in their efforts to hear the voice of our community for any concerns, that can then be addressed and resolved. As such, we were eager recently to promote the Ex Libris initiated Go VE survey to the Primo listserv on 4th December, and will take this opportunity again to encourage our community members not currently using Primo VE to fill out this survey.

Stacey van Groll
Coordinator, IGeLU Primo Working Group