StaffGuide: Receiving & Processing

Types of Labels


Checked in serials items usually receive two labels: a receipt label that contains transaction date, journal title, University of Arkansas Libraries identifier, and the volume/issue information and/or date, depending on label type. There is also another smaller label called the call number label that contains the location, call number, and item identifier (usually date and/or volume/issue).

Checked in newspapers receive one labelCall number label only. See the Check In--Newspapers section for more information.


Label Placement


The call number label should be applied to the upper left corner of the front of the item, leaving a small amount of space for binding.

The receipt label should be applied towards the bottom right of the piece, but there is some wiggle room here. If possible, try not to cover vital words or images on the cover.

Labels should not cover the volume/issue/date (although exceptions can be made for continuations), but can, if necessary, cover the title (since the receipt label includes the title).You can trim the labels to fit smaller areas, if necessary.

Thus, most checked-in and labeled serials will end up looking like this:

journal with labels on front

However, please keep in mind that there are exceptions or additional labeling procedures you will need to follow for some item types and locations, which are listed in the box below.

For hardback books (mainly continuations going to MAIN, MAINA, REF, or one of the branch libraries):

  • The receipt label goes not on the outside, but in the bottom left corner of the inside front cover.

receipt label on hardback book

  • If the issue is hardback and comes with an outside jacket, remove and discard the jacket before barcoding/labeling the item and checking it in.

Printing Labels


By default, most items will print out a call number and receipt label after you click the “check-in” button after selecting your desired issue box, as long as the “print labels” box above the card is checked.

printing labels from a check in card

Select an "expected" box, click "check in," then your labels should print out from your Zebra printer:

Printed labels

Alternatively, you can print a set of labels by selecting the box, then Ctrl+P, then Alt+O. This is particularly useful for when you receive a duplicate, for which you need a set of labels without going through the full check-in process. You can also select the box, right-click, and then select Box Menu > Print Labels from the menus that pop up.

Font Size

Pay close attention to the text printed on call number labels. Sometimes the entire call number will be too long to print using the default font size (usually 9 or 10) and as a result omit part of the identifier. You may need to temporarily change the font size to get the entire call number to print.

To change the font size in Sierra, go to File > Select Printer > Label Printer > Local Printer (click OK) > Format, then change the font size under Graphic Printing to the desired size.

If the entire call number still does not print onto the label, you can pencil it in (as a general rule, pencil can be used when modifying labels, but not pen). Change the font size back to the default after printing the new label.

Settings and Basic Troubleshooting

There is a StaffGuide section on the Serials Zebra Printers that has detailed instructions on printer maintenance, settings, etc. However, here are the basics you should know when it comes to label printing in regards to printer configuration, troubleshooting, etc.:

“Serials Checkin GX420t” is the name of the printer we use to print the labels. You can verify that this is set properly in Sierra by selecting File > Select Printer > Label Printer > Local Printer (click OK) > General tab > Name (select the printer name from the drop-down menu).

The Page Setup tab should look like this:

Printer settings - page setup

The Format tab should look like this:

Printer settings - format

Printer Calibration

You will need to calibrate the printer after loading a new roll of labels or ribbon (refer to the Zebra printer section for instructional videos on how to load label and ribbon rolls). Follow these steps to access the printer settings for calibration:

[These instructions will be added once Windows 10 is installed.]

Other Tips

Many printer issues can be resolved by turning the printer off via the power switch in the back, then back on.

Sometimes, you will need to press the button next to the green light in order to get the labels to print if the printer hesitates or if the green light is flashing, especially after calibrating or restarting the printer.

When the red light comes on, it usually means the printer needs a new label or ribbon roll.

If you are still having trouble getting labels to print properly after restarting the printer, calibrating, checking the printer settings in Sierra, etc., open up a ticket with Library IT for further assistance by e-mailing

Printing Call Number Labels from Item Records


For some titles, primarily continuations going to MAIN, FAL, REF, etc., there are check-in record instructions to print the call number label from the item record. These instructions vary from title to title, but will often read simply like this:

Print call # label from item record instructions

Or like this, having a specific format that the label needs to follow:

Specific call # label instructions

(Note that this procedure only applies to call number labels. You will still use the receipt label that was printed from the check-in card.)

You can see by the examples below, which contain both a check in card-generated and an item record-generated call number for two volumes for comparison, that printing from the check-in record for these titles yields incomplete, insufficient information about the piece, whereas printing from the item record yields call number labels that more clearly state which edition the piece is:

Insufficient call # labels  (insufficient)

detailed call # label 1   detailed call # label 2   (accurate, detailed, and clear)

To print from the item record:

  1. Create your item record.
  2. Open the item record either by opening the check-in box and clicking the item’s button, or by going to the item record summary, clicking on the item, and then clicking the “select” button to the right, above the item records. These two methods are illustrated below.
  3. When in the item record, print the call number label either by Ctrl+L or by selecting Tools > Print Spine Label.

Opening item record from check-in card.

Opening item record from item record summary.

Special Labeling Procedures for Certain Locations and Item Types


Several exceptions and additional procedures exist for labeling items of a certain type or going to a particular location. Please follow the appropriate link if you have to label an item of any of the following categories: