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Alma Acquisitions Resource Guide

This guide covers all aspects of the Acquisitions process, which includes setting up funds, ordering, receiving physical items, activating e-resources, and invoicing. This guide also covers Serials patterns and arrival/check-in.

Performing Global Changes on PO Line Sets


Required Alma Roles


To perform global changes on PO lines, you must have one of the following roles:

  • Purchase Operator
  • Purchase Manager
  • Acquisitions Administrator
  • General System Administrator


Perform global changes on PO lines


To change a list of PO lines, you must first create a PO line set, which is a set of PO lines; see Managing Jobs and Sets. After the set is created, you will run a PO Line job

The following jobs are available in Alma:

Creating Sets of PO Lines

There are two kinds of sets in Alma: 

  • Itemized - Selected or uploaded set of individual records. The itemized set is static, and members of the set can be added or removed manually. 
  • Logical - A saved search query. This set content is dynamic and the results reflect information currently in the Alma repository. If new records are added and fit the criteria of the set, the new records will be added to the established set. 

Ways to create a set in Alma:

Using Alma Advanced search to create a query to find PO Lines
  1. Search for individual PO lines in Alma with an Order Lines advanced search > Save Query.
  2. On "Set Details" page, name your set. You may also allow others in your institution to view and edit your set by selecting Private: No.  Description and notes may also be added to your set at this point > Save
  3. Your set is created, and can be accessed via Admin > Manage Sets. In the "My Sets" tab, find your set > ... > Results.
Manually searching Alma and adding to set
  1. Create your set in Alma. Admin > Manage Sets > Add Set > Itemized.
  2. Enter required fields (Set Name, and Set content type: "Order Lines"). Determine if you'd like others from your institution to find your set, if yes- next to Private, check "No". Select Status: "Active". If Inactive, the set will not be discoverable when you run a job. 
  3. Select Save to save your set.
  4. Search for your set. Admin > Manage Sets. Find your set in "My Sets". If you selected Private: "No" when setting up your set, you and others will be able to find your set in "Public Sets" as well. 
  5. To add members to your set, click on the Set Name > Add Members to Set > you will be directed to a blank Purchase Order Lines results page. 
  6. Use the "Order Lines" Advanced search to search for specific PO lines by title, number, workflow status, vendor etc. You can narrow your search down further, using facets on the left hand side tool bar. You can "Select All" or check boxes next to specific PO lines you'd like to add to your set > Add Selected > Done.
  7. Check your sets at any time to see the records in your set by Admin > Manage Sets. In the "My Sets" tab, find your set > ... > Members.


Uploading a set of PO Line numbers (also referred to as PO Line Reference) from a file to Alma
  1. In an excel or notepad file, paste a column of PO Line ID numbers into the file. If using Excel, paste PO line ID numbers in the first column. Add a column header of PO Line Reference. Save your notepad/Excel file.

  2. In Alma, Admin > Manage Sets > Add Set > Itemized. On "Set Details" page, add Set Name, and set "Set content type" as Order Lines. In "Add Contents from File to Set" section, select the folder icon to upload your data file.
  3. Once uploaded > Save. This will create a job in Alma to create the set. Once the job completes, you will find your set in the "My Sets" tab of Admin > Manage Sets.

Running Jobs in Alma

After creating and saving your itemized or logical set in Alma, you can run a job on the set. To run a PO line job in Alma: 

  1. Admin > Manage Jobs and Sets > Run a Job
  2.  On the "Run a Job - Select Job to Run" page, limit your content type to "Purchase order line" or start typing "PO" into the Description drop-down box. Select the job you want to run > Next
  3. On the "Run a Job - Select Set" page, find your set of PO lines and select it > Next
  4. On the "Run a Job - Enter Task Parameters" page, select the action that you would like to accomplish with the job > Next.  This page will also display an alert on the right hand side of the screen that tells you how many members are in your set. 
  5. Review your job parameters on the "Run a Job - Review and Confirm" page, if everything looks right > Submit > on the Confirmation message screen > Confirm. 
  6. You will be routed to the "Monitor Jobs" page, "Running" tab. You can click Refresh to see the job progress. Once complete, the job will be accessible in the "History" tab. 
  7. You can review the job summary and report of records changed by going to the "History" tab, find your job > ... > Report.  
  8. The "Job Report" will tell you how many PO lines in the set were processed, or if any PO lines were skipped by the job. The Report Table will give a reason of why PO lines were skipped by the job. 

Overview of PO Line Jobs


Update PO Lines Workflow

Move PO lines to a specific stage in the workflow

Available actions:

  • Set to In Review - job will move the PO line forward from "Ready" to "In Review"
  • Reopen closed/cancelled PO Lines - job will attempt to reopen closed or cancelled PO lines and set them to "In Review"
  • Save and Continue - job will attempt to push PO line from "In Review" one step ahead in the workflow


Update PO Lines Transactions

Modify PO line allocation between funds

Available Actions:

  • List Price
  • Quantity
  • Release remaining encumbrance - if a discount or price change was reflected at the point of invoicing, encumbrance should be released to ensure accurate reporting of available funds in funds and ledgers
  • Funds - Job can add up to 5 funds on PO lines in set, and determine percentage of cost per fund on PO lines


Update PO Lines Interested Users 

Update Interested Users for PO Lines in a set. This job does not process closed or cancelled PO lines. You cannot add interested users in batch with this job. 

Available Actions:

  • Notify interested user upon receiving/ activation - options: yes/no. Select yes if you'd like to notify interested user that item is available for pick up at the point of receiving (physical items) or activation (electronic records). 
  • Hold item for interested user - options: yes/no. Select yes if you'd like to create a hold on the item for the interested user once the item is received. The item must still be scanned in at the pick up desk for the patron to be notified of availability. 
  • Notify interested user upon renewal - options: yes/no. Select yes if you'd like to notify interested users that resource has been renewed. This applies to subscription type PO lines. 
  • Notify interested user upon cancellation - options: yes/no. Select yes if you'd like to notify interested users if an order has been cancelled and the resource will not arrive or remain available. 
  • Handle also PO lines that are fully received - checkbox. By default, this job only handles PO lines where the inventory has not yet been received/activated. Check this field to include PO lines where items have already been received. Please be aware that once checked, the interested user on the PO line might receive notifications for items already in the library's catalog. 


Update PO Lines Information - (Advanced) 
Update PO line information according to specified conditions

Available actions:

  • Acquisition Method
  • PO line type
  • PO line owner

Limitations of this job:

  • Once a PO line is created, the PO line type must remain within the same inventory and continuity. This job cannot change the PO Line Type from one format to another (Physical versus Electronic) or from one continuity to another (Continuous versus One-Time). 
  • The job cannot change the PO Line Type for closed or cancelled PO lines.
  • The following settings must be in place for the PO line owner to change successfully by this job:
    • The intended PO line owner must have an "Acquire For" relationship with the item's inventory on the PO line. 
    • The vendor must be available for the PO line owner to purchase from. 
    • The fund must be available for the PO line owner to utilize. 


Update PO Lines Information 

Modify PO line attributes after an order is created and sent to the vendor. There are options to apply change to all PO lines in set unconditionally, only if field is empty or not empty in PO line. 

Available fields to edit: 

  • Material Supplier - drop down list. Changes the vendor in the PO line.
  • Access Provider - drop down list
  • Invoice Status - Fully Invoiced, No Invoice, or Partially Invoiced
  • Receiving note - free text
  • Claiming grace period (days) - free text
  • Acquisition Method - drop down list
  • Material type (Physical) - drop down list 
  • Material type (Electronic) - drop down list
  • License - drop down list. Licenses must first be configured for drop down list in job to populate. 
  • Rush - yes/no
  • Manual renewal - yes/no (Continuous PO Line types)
  • Manual packaging - yes/no
  • 1st reporting code, 2nd reporting code, 3rd reporting code - drop down list. Reporting codes must first be configured for drop down list in job to populate. 
  • Access Model - drop down list

Limitations of this job: 

  • If a PO line is closed and you cannot perform actions in the Alma interface, this job will not perform those actions either. 
  • You cannot change a vendor in a PO line if it is in a "sent" status such as "Waiting for Renewal"
  • You cannot update the Acquisition Method for PO lines that are not "In Review" status with this job. You will have to use the Update PO Lines Information - Advanced job for that. 


Change PO Lines Status 

Change a set of PO lines to a new status (Cancel, Close, or Delete).

Available actions:

  • Cancel PO Lines - select cancellation reason (library or vendor cancelled), and select from drop down how you'd like to handle bib records without inventory. Suggested workflow: delete bibliographic records. Do not select "Use Force Cancel" unless job fails, at which point you can try "Use Force Cancel".
  • Close PO Lines - Do not "Use Force Close" unless the job fails, at which point you can try "Use Force Close". Select Remove from Electronic Resource Activation Task List" to complete task list workflow as well. 
  • Delete PO Lines - Job will delete PO lines with a status of "In Review" or "Cancelled" as long as it's not a part of a sent Purchase Order (PO). 

Limitations of this job:

  • PO lines with the status of In Review, Ready, or Sent cannot be changed to Closed. Only PO lines with a status of Waiting for Invoice, Waiting for Renewal, or Waiting for Manual can be closed. 
  • You can only delete PO lines with a status of In Review or Cancelled.
  • If you're trying to delete cancelled PO lines from a purchase order while other PO lines on the purchase order remain active, the job will not skip the PO lines and yield the following error: "PO line # is linked to a PO and cannot be deleted". To delete PO lines linked to active PO's, first try to cancel the PO lines > reopen > delete. 

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