Library Technology Guides

Document Repository

Smart Libraries Newsletter

Update on Ex Libris Alma

Smart Libraries Newsletter [October 2016]


Ex Libris continues to see strong interest in its Alma library services platform. It especially has been successful among large universities, multi-campus university systems, and consortia compromised primarily of academic libraries. The product continues to mature in features and is delivered with an integrated knowledge base. Its development commenced in 2009, with libraries in production beginning in 2011. Deployed as a web-native multi-tenant platform, Alma has monthly updates with new features and bug fixes, which have been continually applied over the life of the product.

The company announced that by September 2016 that there are now over 500 live implementations of its Alma library services platform. The company reached this milestone with the Renouvaud library network in Switzerland, serving over 100 libraries in the canton of Vaud. The library network switched from Virtua to Alma as their production automation environment.

Alma has been selected by 31 of the 125 members of the Association of Research Libraries. The University of Pennsylvania, formerly one of the Kuali OLE partner libraries, recently announced its selection of Alma. All previous institutions selecting Alma have also selected Primo as its patron-facing discovery service. The Penn Libraries, however, plan to implement Alma with a customized discovery interface based on the open source Blacklight software. This unbundled implementation will set a precedent. Ex Libris has also committed to supporting Summon as a discovery interface for Alma following its acquisition by ProQuest.

Ex Libris also touts the openness of Alma made possible through a robust suite of APIs. Libraries increasingly expect to access the data and functionality of their systems through APIs. Ex Libris reported in June 2016 that the Alma platform currently services over 1 million API requests daily.

Alma has also been the launch pad for other products. Its Leganto product for the management of course lists, launched in September 2015, has been purchased by 20 libraries in 9 different countries in its first year of availability.

View Citation
Publication Year:2016
Type of Material:Article
Language English
Published in: Smart Libraries Newsletter
Publication Info:Volume 36 Number 10
Issue:October 2016
Publisher:ALA TechSource
Place of Publication:Chicago, IL
Products: Alma
Record Number:22259
Last Update:2022-11-14 05:44:17
Date Created:2017-02-16 09:36:09