Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions

Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions (RMU)

“Initially we were just looking for something that would proxy our patrons through our website. What we ended up with was so much more!”

Karen Newmeyer, Director of Library Services

The Challenge

Complex Authentication Requirements

Multiple identity sources

Faculty wanted Single Sign-On access to library resources, but implementation was complicated by RMU’s unique requirement to authenticate patrons from 3 separate sources: local network credentials (staff/faculty), G Suite / Gmail (students) and library-supported credentials (alumni, clinicians).

Resources requiring restricted access

The library’s license with UpToDate, a key resource, required secure access limited to two academic departments. RMU had no way to restrict access to users from those departments because the resource was visible to everyone on their library site. Their situation was further complicated when the library discovered discovered that UpToDate wouldn’t work with their legacy vendor.

Library portal maintenance

The library was maintaining a complex library portal requiring multiple tabs to list the resources relevant for each academic department. In addition to UpToDate, RMU had other resources that required restricted access from alumni, clinicians and preceptors, frustrating users who found they weren’t authorized to use them.

Proxy maintenance headaches

Maintenance of proxy configurations soaked up a lot of effort from library staff that was better invested in supporting patron needs.

50% of patrons are remote

RMU’s online programs attract large numbers of off-campus students who need access to library resources, so it was important to find a solution that simplified remote access.

How We Helped

A custom, managed solution

Single Login Page

A universal entry point for all library patrons, regardless of the type of credentials used to login (local directory, student Gmail, and personal email). This greatly simplifies access pathways, and library support.

Custom SSO integrations

Custom integrations with RMU’s Azure ADFS and G Suite enable faculty, staff and students to seamlessly authenticate via their respective identity providers. Users accessing from a personal device can further streamline access because LibLynx automatically remembers their chosen identity provider.

Custom User Portal

RMU initially planned to use LibLynx alongside their existing library portal but was delighted to eliminate their library portal and the maintenance burden. The LibLynx user portal simplifies access by automatically displaying the relevant resources for each user, based on their academic department affiliation. This unique functionality enables the library to maintain contract compliance by easily restricting access to resources like UpToDate, with an added benefit of not frustrating users by showing resources they are not authorized to access.

Technical Expertise

We liaised directly with the library’s vendors to ensure a smooth implementation. For example, we worked with the G Suite technical team to resolve integration questions, and with UpToDate we explained LibLynx’ ability to easily and securely control resource access and visibility.

Managed Proxy Solution

We took over responsibility for all aspects of proxy management, including maintaining configurations in response to changes in resource provider websites.

“Having multiple identity providers proved too difficult for OpenAthens… LibLynx heard our cry for help and got us set up quickly and with ease.”
– Ross Sabin, Systems Administrator & IT Support

The Implementation

When Karen Newmeyer, RMU’s new Library Director, took over she quickly realized that (i) maintaining proxy stanzas was eating up valuable staff time. and (ii) Single Sign-On (SSO) was needed to enable patrons to access resources using their existing RMU credentials. However, their first attempt at implementation was a major let down – their legacy vendor was unable to resolve integration issues, and Karen had to postpone their entire roll-out.

With less than a month before the start of the Winter semester, the pressure was on to find and implement a solution.

We addressed the integration issue up front by working with campus IT and G Suite’s technical team to develop a proof of concept demonstrating how we would integrate ADFS and Gmail into a single, RMU-branded login page. Next, we showed how the LibLynx user portal could deliver a more user-friendly and efficient access experience by automatically displaying a relevant set of resources for each user, based on their academic group affiliation.

After RMU’s library and IT staff were comfortable with our approach, we customized their user portal and enabled all their online resources, liaising as needed with resource providers. Our custom integrations with ADFS and Gmail provided us with the user metadata needed to build user groups and the logic required to automatically display resources and information based on academic discipline.

The end result was a modern SSO-based portal that greatly simplified access via a single entry point and delivered a personalized set of resources for each user. Best of all, offloading the maintenance of proxy configurations and the library portal leaves Karen and her team free to focus on supporting their patrons.

About RMU

Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions is an accredited academic institution established in 1998 as an exclusive graduate healthcare education provider. Based in Provo, Utah, RMU has a reputation for providing exceptional, high quality, rigorous entry-level and post-professional programs in a variety of healthcare professions.

Please contact us to explore how we can help provide your users with a one-stop service for all resources.

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