In partnership with libraries and publishers, GOBI Library Solutions is developing a new modern, technology-driven books ordering platform that will support the discovery, selection, acquisition, collection development and workflow needs of librarians. Mosaic, by GOBI Library Solutions offers libraries choice, interoperability, modern workflows and customization, to help put all the pieces together build a one-of-a-kind collection. 

To ensure that we are building an ordering platform that meets the needs of all libraries and all workflows, GOBI Library Solutions is partnering with more than 30 libraries, consortia and publishers from around the world in the development of Mosaic. Over the past year, we have worked with our library and consortia Innovation Partners to better understand their needs and pain points. Our Partners have provided their ongoing input via regular meetings with our user research team and are currently acting as beta partners supporting the development of Mosaic. The goal of the Innovation Partner program is to allow partners to provide direct input on the features and functionalities of the platform as well as the user experience to ensure Mosaic provides the best possible experience for libraries of all sizes, no matter their workflows.

Discover what some of our Innovation Partners had to say about their involvement in the development of Mosaic.

  • Damon Campbell, University of Oregon Libraries
  • Dean Bergstrom, Yale University
  • Klara Ramnath, Gettysburg College
  • Linda Robinson Barr, Austin Community College

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your library.

Damon: I’m an Acquisitions Librarian at University of Oregon, and I lead the library unit charged with acquiring and paying for resources chosen by our subject specialists and faculty. The University of Oregon Libraries have long-utilized GOBI in its collection development operations. The views expressed on this blog, are mine and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Oregon.

Dean: I am a Technical Services Librarian working at Yale University, I began working here in 2020. My background was in cataloging and learning acquisitions was the largest challenge I encountered in my new position. The number of vendors and methods of purchasing was overwhelming but with the help of colleagues and vendor partners I was able to succeed. My duties currently include overseeing the ordering of monograph print and electronic resources as well as curating and maintaining approval plans from several vendors. Yale University Libraries have a rich history comprised of many collections which allows me to work with many interesting collaborators.

Klara: My name is Klara Ramnath and I’m the Acquisitions & Cataloging Librarian for Musselman Library at Gettysburg College. I’ve worked in libraries for 13 years and have spent 9 of them here at Musselman. Our library has a great staff and provides lots of opportunities to branch out into different aspects of librarianship beyond my role and to work with staff from other library and campus departments. Currently, I am the chair of our Marketing Committee and I also serve on a committee that supervises an undergraduate internship for students interested in library science. That’s in addition to my responsibilities supervising our acquisitions practices and cataloging staff.

Linda: I am Linda Robinson Barr. I’m currently Head Librarian for Library Technical Services and Automation at Austin Community College.  The ACC Library department consists of 10 campuses plus our department.  We operate as one collection with multiple locations including an online virtual library.  Therefore, the Tech Services dept manages all the ordering and receiving of resources that are then distributed out to our campuses.  Our 40+ faculty librarians are our subject selectors, and they submit their orders to our department.  I’ve been a librarian since 1984.  I’ve worked in collection development, systems, management, among other areas.  I’ve worked in public, academic and for library-related companies. I’ve enjoyed it all.

Why did you decide to join the Innovation Partner Program?

Damon: As long-time GOBI users, we thought our experience with GOBI would be helpful in guiding the creation of a new product. We felt that the best way to be sure our input was considered would be to directly participate in the Innovation Partner Program.

Dean: Vendor platforms are a large part of our acquisition practices. Not only for ordering but also for maintenance, reporting, and problem resolution. Having experienced both the advantages and drawbacks of vendor ordering platforms I felt I could provide useful opinions. Selfishly, I also felt there was an opportunity to improve our workflows by contributing to the design process. By highlighting the challenges, we have had with current platforms changes may be made that can better accommodate our workflows going forward.

Klara: I joined the Innovation Partner program because I’ve spent a lot of time ordering in GOBI over the years and was eager to help improve it. GOBI is not difficult to navigate, but it isn’t the most intuitive platform. I’ve never been part of a focus group like this, so learning how such a platform is designed and built was greatly appealing to me.

Linda: Having been on both sides of product development (as a customer/user and as a product manager/developer) I know the importance of clear thoughtful input and the opportunity to give that input.  I’m so appreciative of EBSCO for giving us this opportunity.  We give detailed information so that we know their products have the input of a customer who heavily uses their products.

What has been the extent of your participation in the program? (Initial Kickoff, Design Concept Testing, Usability Testing)

Damon: We participated in kickoff, design concept review, usability testing, naming survey, card sort study, and this blog!

Dean: My colleagues and I have been involved from the initial kickoff. We have given feedback and reviewed design concepts. The card sort study was an interesting experience, and we appreciated the opportunity to offer insight into our current ordering workflows. EBSCO was even interested in feedback regarding the name of the new platform. The process has been interesting and enjoyable.

Klara: I’ve participated in an initial kickoff to give feedback about what aspects are important for an ordering system, the design concept testing where I gave feedback on a couple of different platform designs, and in a usability testing session to give feedback about the usability of the chosen design. I guess I’ve been involved from the start!

Linda: I have been happy to participate on all of the participation steps offered.  It is amazing to see the progress, hear the insightful questions from EBSCO and the insightful interesting answers from participants.

So far, what has been the most interesting or exciting part of this project?

Damon: Seeing each progression of this process build upon the input we contributed previously has been both interesting and gratifying.

Dean: The most exciting part of the project has been seeing the evolution of Mosaic. EBSCO has taken partner feedback into consideration and implemented changes based on that feedback. The interesting part has been seeing how a design process like this works. Specifically, how feedback and workflow details are elicited from partners in an engaging way.

Klara: I loved participating in the design concept testing. It was interesting to compare two different platform designs and to think about how each could benefit or hinder the acquisition process. I also found it fascinating the design concepts seemed to resemble online library catalogs. It’s a nice touch that should improve usability for more librarians.  I believe good design and user experience are universal, so I liked seeing those ideas reflected in this process.

Linda: The most interesting and exciting part has been seeing our input acknowledged and seeing how it has shaped the product development process. 

What are you most looking forward to?

Damon: I’m looking forward to the payoff – a new, improved portal which incorporates new features and addresses challenges we encountered previously in our ordering workflows.

Dean: I am most looking forward to seeing colleagues interact with Mosaic as a finished product, knowing we had input into a new design and having confidence that we can grow as partners with EBSCO beyond the implementation of Mosaic.

Klara: I’m most looking forward to a more streamlined order process that resembles a standard point of sale transaction. I also am excited to see how the administrative tools have been updated. Running reports and tracking expenditures are a large part my job, so it will be nice to have some upgraded features in this area.

Linda: Testing out the end result!

Learn more about Mosaic