Working in Alma and the Network Zone

Document status


Area coveredacquisitions, cataloging, electronic resources management
Prepared byTechnical Services Working Group Leads
Adapted fromOrbis Cascade Alliance Collaborative Technical Services Team


This policy sets out the overarching principles regarding working in the Network Zone that CSU libraries must understand. When specific policies are not yet in place, libraries should act in line with these principles.

Policy Statement

  • The Network Zone (NZ) in Alma is the shared bibliographic environment for CSU libraries. The goal is to have bibliographic records, brief or full, reside in the NZ with inventory attached.
    • This provides a foundation for collaborative work, both in terms of developing collections and cataloging. All bibliographic records should reside in the NZ (see other specific policies for the few exceptions).

  • It is important to avoid adding duplicate records (records with the same OCLC number in 035$$a) to the NZ.
    • Always search the NZ first before “Sharing with Network”” in Alma or exporting from Connexion Client.
    • Avoid adding duplicates when doing batch imports such as vendor EOD or WorldCat Cataloging Partners records.

  • It is important not to change the OCLC number in an existing NZ record. 
    • If a different OCLC record is needed, move your Alma inventory to the desired record, rather than change/overlay the record in the NZ. (You may need to export the OCLC record you want if it is not already in the NZ.)

  • Editing of bibliographic records should be done in Connexion rather than in Alma.
    • This is in line with the bibliographic mandate that cataloging is done at the WorldCat level. In addition, daily OCLC loads by CSU will overlay existing bibs in Alma whenever the OCLC master record is edited, so any changes made in Alma will be lost. This means:
      • No manual editing of bibs in the Metadata Editor (exceptions: adding local fields, adding OCLC numbers to brief bibs).
      • No batch processes to edit NZ bibs using Normalization Rules or Run Jobs in Alma.
      • Do not use the “Derive New Record” feature in the Metadata Editor to create new records for bibliographic resources in the NZ.

Action log

SectionPoint Person

Expected Completion Date

Last action takenNext action required

Articulate the need for the policy (background)

TS Leads


9/15/2016 - Policy needed to establish general principles governing the work in Alma and the Network Zone.

To be distributed to TS Working Group for discussion.

Finalize Policy Statement

TS Leads