Managing library items
In this article eyes
Overview of the library
In addition to the Songs section, the Planning module has a powerful Library for all your other non-song plan items, making it super-easy to re-use library items time and again when building plans or managing plan templates. You can add library items individually or bulk-import library items from a suitably-prepared CSV format file.
Library items are categorised by Type. For example, you might have item Types for:
- set prayers
- elements of liturgy
- notices and announcements
- miscellaneous other items
The Planning module comes pre-populated with several commonly-used Types that can be further customised or removed if not needed. Library item Types can be customised with Questions against which you can store Responses for all the extra pieces of information you might wish to maintain for Library items of that Type. For example, for a 'Prayers' Type, you may want to maintain the words of a prayer as text. Essentially, each Library Type can be customised so that you can keep all the type-specific library item details organised.
Having set up Library item Types as explained in the next section, you can then begin to populate your Library, as explained later.
Managing library item types
As mentioned, you can categorise Library items by type. From the Types section of the Planning module, you can View, Edit or Delete any of the existing types listed, You can also change the type Order so that your most commonly-used library item types are at the top of type lists, which you will see later when adding items to your Library. To add a new library item type click Add type.
On the Add type or Edit type pop-up, enter a suitable Name by which you wish to categorise and group your library items. Optionally choose a Colour, which is used to distinguish library items of this type on Plans and Templates. Optionally enter a Duration that will be assigned to new library items of this type by default - you'll be able to override this default duration when adding library items. Optionally enable CCLI tracking if you wish to track library item usage for items of this type.
Clicking Save for a new-added type opens the type "View" page. You can return here at any time in the future to Edit and make changes to the type. Typically, a Library Type will simply be a means of categorising and grouping library items, however, from the Questions tab, you can also optionally further customise the type by adding type-specific questions, enabling you to maintain additional information associated with library items of this type. Let's explore an example. Click Add question.
On the Add question pop-up, enter a suitable Name and select a preferred Type of response format for the type-specific information you'll be maintaining. Depending on the question type you choose you can also add options. Set the question Visibility - choosing whether the question data is to be Visible or Hidden on plan pages. Click Save to add the question. Continue adding further type-specific questions as appropriate.
Continue adding Type-specific questions as required. Later, when adding Library items of this type you will be able to add this additional type-specific information. You can return here at any time to make further changes. Care should be taken if editing or deleting type-specific questions or question response options, to avoid loss of existing type response data. Similarly, deleting a library Type entirely is highly destructive and will delete all library items of that Type and remove those items from all plans (past and future) and templates, which in turn impacts library item historical usage records - delete with extreme caution!
In the next section, we see how to populate the Planning module Library. Before leaving the Type "View" page, note the Library tab, which lists all the library items of this type. You can add and manage library items here, but you may prefer to work within the Library section of the module - see next section.
Adding library items
The Planning module Library is the core repository for all the non-song items that you wish to use time and again when creating plans and building plan templates, each categorised by Type (see the previous section). A separate Songs section is provided for storing all your songs and hymns - see the related support article for Managing songs.
Library items can be Archived when no longer needed, or later Set as active if needed again. You can easily filter or Search within a large library - the list filters as you type in the search bar.
Clicking Add library item opens a pop-up through which the library item's details are added. Begin by selecting the library item Type (required) under which the new item will be categorised. Any type-specific Questions are also shown - see the previous section for adding library Types and type-specific questions. Enter a suitable library item Name and optionally set a default Duration that will be used when the library item is added to plans and templates.
Clicking Save will add the new library item and redirect you to the new item "View" page showing all the details just added. You can return here at any time in the future to make changes. This is also the place where you can upload and attach Files related to the library item and where you can view the library item's Usage - see the related support articles for further information on Adding files to library items and plans.
Adding ad hoc library items from a plan or template
One of the great features of the Planning module is how easy it is to populate plans and templates with new items that don't yet exist in your Library - there's no constraint over the plan items you might add. However, having created a great plan or template, you may want to re-use items again by adding them to the Library directly from a plan or template. Here's how...
Working from a plan or template the Add to library action is shown for any items that are not already Library items. If this action isn't shown it means the item is already in your Library - you can distinguish Library items as they are clickable, redirecting you to the library item's View page in the Library.
Clicking Add to library opens a pop-up pre-populated with all the item details from the plan or template. If not already assigned, choose the Library Type under which the new library item should be categorised, and click Save to complete the process.
Viewing library item usage and song usage
It's sometimes helpful to assess how frequently certain library items and songs are used or to see when a library item or song was last used. This is easily visualised on the Usage tab when viewing a library item or song.