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Alma Resource Management

Working with the Metadata Editor in the Institution and Network Zones. Includes indication and normalization rules.

OCLC Publishing Profiles

OCLC Publishing profiles allows libraries to automatically synchronize their bibliographic holdings and local holdings records to OCLC Worldcat. Bibliographic records and Local Holdings Records (LHRs) can be configured to be published automatically to OCLC Worldcat via OCLC Worldshare data sync collections on a daily or weekly basis. 

  • Automating bibliographic publishing profiles in Alma allows for more accuracy with library holdings in OCLC Worldcat. Bibliographic Publishing Profiles also keeps the holdings in the Network Zone in sync with SUNY-wide OCLC holdings. SUNY OCLC Worldcat holdings impact the new, updated, and merged files that are run daily in Alma.
  • Publishing Local Holdings Records (LHRs) can be automated in Alma. When LHR publishing profiles enabled the holdings and holdings information are automated and update LHRs in OCLC Worldcat using a data sync collection.

OCLC's Match Method

IMPORTANT UPDATE posted on September 30, 2020:OCLC is diverting SUNY's bib data sync collection files to the old process to allow our records to match on the OCN only! OCLC is in the process of enhancing their new process to have the ability to allow users to select matching bib records on the OCN without other qualifiers. The ability to use the new process and match on the OCN only is expected to be available at the end of 2020.


On July 7, 2020, OCLC implemented a new processing method for bib data sync collections (LHR data sync collections still match only on the OCN). Prior to OCLC’s new processing method, MARC records matched on the OCLC number (OCN) and Data sync collection were able to omit bib records without OCNs from publishing.

OCLC's new processing match method now matches on more than just OCN. It now matches records based on:

  • OCN (035 $a)
  • Title (245 $a)
  • Material type (LDR 06)
  • 008 position 23 and/or 29
  • 856 with 2nd indicator 0
    Note: Non-electronic MARC records containing MARC 856 with a 2nd indicator 0 will match to an electronic MARC record

Bib records without OCNs will now attempt to match to records in OCLC:

  • The library’s holdings will be places on and OCLC record if a match is found using the other OCLC match point
  •  If the record does not find a match in OCLC it will not publish and go to staging

OCLC's new match method may result in MARC records being sent from Alma matching on a different record in OCLC. Incorrect matching can impact new, updated, and deleted bib records resulting in:

  1. Holdings being added to the incorrect bib records
  • Current holdings on the correct OCLC number remains
  • Adds an additional holdings to an OCLC record the library does not have in Alma
  • Sends a new bib record to the SUNY OCLC query collection
  • New records are imported to Alma and upon no match in the NZ they will create new bib record 
  1. Holdings being removed from the incorrect bib records
  • Holdings remain on the correct OCLC records the library sent from Alma
  • OCLC “removes” holdings on OCLC record it matched on instead
  • The deleted bib records are sent to the SUN OCLC query collection
  • OCLC delete files are not imported to Alma


OCLC Publishing Profiles Training Videos

Attention: The recordings below were created prior to OCLC's new processing method, which was implemented on June 7, 2020.

OCLC Bibliographic Publishing Profiles

The majority of SUNY libraries have been configured in Alma to publish their bibliographic holdings to OCLC. Bib records are published to the library's OCLC Worldshare bibliographic data sync collection when they are added, modified, or deleted from the library collection. Bib records need to be tagged "Publish bib" in Alma in order for the bib records to be automatically published to the data sync collection. Publishing profiles can be configured to be published daily or weekly. 

When changes are made to bib records that are tagged to "Publish bib" the leader (LDR) in position 5 will be changed in the output file being sent to OCLC. The LDR's record status that is sent to the OCLC bib data sync collection will not be reflected in the Alma MARC record. LDR position 5 tells the OCLC bib data sync collection what to do with the bib record. LDR position 5 send the following record statuses to the OCLC bib data sync collection:

Bib records can be prevented from publishing to the OCLC Worldshare data sync collection by changing the "Set Management Tag" to "Don't publish". The tag can be changed manually in the MD Editor for individual records. A set of records "set Management Tag" can be change for a set of records using the "Synchronize bib record with external system" or "Synchronize with OCLC"  job. Best practice is to change the "Set Management Tag" to "Don't publish" for bib records in Alma that a library does not want to publish.

Bib records that should not be published to OCLC:

  • Bib records without OCLC
  • Bib records used for course reserves only
  • Electronic resources for libraries who do not publish their e-resources


NOTE: The data sync collections have also been configured not to publish electronic resources for SUNY libraries that do not publish the e-resources holdings to OCLC.

OCLC Local Holdings Records Publishing Profiles

Local Holdings Records (LHRs) can be published to OCLC Worldshare data sync collection for SUNY libraries that want to automate updating their LHRs. This reduces the need to make changes to LHRs in both Alma and OCLC. Libraries will only need to update their LHRs in Alma once they have configured an LHRs data sync collection in OCLC and activated their LHRs publishing profiles in Alma.

When changes are made to LHRs and they are tagged to "Publish bib" the leader (LDR) in position 5 is changed in the output file that is sent to OCLC. The LDR's record status change is sent to the OCLC LHRs data sync collection will not be reflected in the Alma MARC record. LDR position 5 tells the OCLC LHRs data sync collection what to do with the local holding record. LDR position 5 sends the following record statuses to the OCLC LHRs data sync collection:


OCLC Worldshare LHRs data sync collections should be configured to allow the Record Status for Processing and to delete the holdings when the final LHR has been deleted from a bib record: 

  • Record Status for Processing: Yes
    • This setting allows OCLC Worldshare LHRs data sync collection to delete the holdings records with "d" in the LDR position 5
  • Remove Worldcat Holding When Final LHR Deleted: Yes
    • This setting allows the OCLC Worldshare LHRs data sync collection to delete the holding on the bib record when the last LHR has been deleted

Reducing Matching on Another Bib Record

There are some ways libraries can prevent OCLC’s new process from matching on the incorrect bib record:

  • Do not edit MARC fields that the new process uses to match on:
    • OCN (OCLC number)
    • Title (245 $a)
    • Material type (LDR 06)
    • 008 position 23 or 29
  • Do no use 2nd indicator 0 when adding MARC 856s to IZ only physical bib records
    • Update existing records with a 2nd indicator of 0 to blank or another indicator
  • Refine data sync collections to exclude records with 856 2nd indicator 0 to publish
    • NOTE: This will prevent any bib records that are being sent from Alma to OCLC with 856 2nd indicator 0 from publishing holdings in OCLC
  • Set Management Tags to “Don’t publish” for all bib records without OCLC numbers
    • Brief bib records
    • Course reserves created from a brief citation
  • Re-import IZ only bib records when updating them in Alma

Additional Things to Consider with Publishing Profiles

  1. Publishing profiles currently only allows full MARC records to be sent to OCLC causing records to match on more than the OCN
    • Alma requires development to be able to use “Numeric Key Search”, which allows match on the OCN 
      • "Numeric Key Search" requires sending .csv files with OCNs
  2. If changes are made to specific fields in the MARC record in Alma and they do not exist in the master OCLC, the following fields maybe added to the OCLC MARC record:
    • Call number fields: 050, 055, 060, 070, 080, 082, 083, 084, 085, 086, 090, 092, 
    • Note fields: 505, 511, 520
    • Subject Headings: 6XX
    • Electronic location and access: 856
  3. For libraries publishing e-resources via bib publishing profiles some holdings add to the incorrect bib record:
    • Some CZ records use the print bib record and OCN
    • Some CZ records contain the e-resource and print bib record OCNs
  4. Update import and integration profiles “Set Management Tags” to “Don’t publish” for e-resources if your library is not publishing e-resources to OCLC from Alma

Reviewing Data Sync Files

It is a good idea to review data sync files in Worldshare that have been sent via Alma's bib publishing profiles for records that matched on a different OCN. To review bib data sync files:

  1. Login to OCLC Worldshare Management Services
  2. Click My Files
  3. Click Download
  4. Select files containing BIB in the file path:
    • Bibprocessingreport – is based on collection setup, record content, and actions taken on the bibliographic record.
    • Bibsummaryreport - contains the corresponding statistics for the Bibliographic Processing Report
    • BibCrossRefReport - includes only records that resulted in one of the following bibActions: create, match, replace, or field transfer
    • BibUnresolvedCrossRefRport -  includes only records that resulted in a bibAction of unresolved
    • BibExceptionReport - contains unresolved records that were added to WorldCat staging
  5. Click Download
  6. Open the file on your desktop
  7. Review file


Ex Libris Documentation