Tuesday, February 12, 2008

British Standards On line Enhancement Group February 2008 Meeting

The JIBS BSOL enhancement group met with BSI on the 5 February 2008.
Below I have summarised the major issues that the group wished to raise with BSI. More detail will be found in the minutes of the meeting which will be made available in due course from the JIBS web site; - http://www.jibs.ac.uk/

There was agreement that the new search engine was an improvement on the previous engine and that users had a far greater chance of locating relevant standards higher up in their results list. However the group had a number of concerns that they raised with BSI.

The change over process to the new software had not gone as smoothly as had been hoped. Many users of Athens and Athens DA had faced authentication problems. Some users had moved to proxy authentication to work around this issue. BSI is working with Eduserv to overcome the problems and it appears that there are now no longer problems with Athens authentication. There continues to be a problem with 2 Athens DA users and work continues on resolving this issue.

The other issue raised by many universities was the "landing page".
Users log in and then have to click on the BSOL link, and this has caused some confusion. Proxy users were now logging and going directly to the BSOL search page. Some Athens users were not able to go directly the BSOL service. BSI is still pursuing this issue.

During the first week of the new service there had been an unforeseen major hardware problem and this had impacted badly on the service which as a result had been unreliable. The customer help line had also failed to cope with the level of demand; this was due to 3 of the 5 staff being signed of on long term sick leave. BSI had taken steps to provide back up but it took a number of weeks to reduce the backlog and to bring the team's response levels back within their service level agreement. The enhancement group had received some positive feedback on customer help within recent weeks.

The group raised a number of issues relating to the design of the search screens and the functionality of the advanced search facility. BSI confirmed that there would be a new release of the software mid 2008 and again towards the end of 2008. They noted the feedback from the group and welcomed our suggestions. The commonest issue raised was the default to number searching and the necessity to make clearer to users how to do a keyword search. This would have a high priority for the next release.

The group will meet again with BSI in late April or early July.

Roger Hines
Chair JIBS BSOL Enhancement Group

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