Onboarding guides in Talis Aspire


Each year libraries have told us that they need to run refresher training for returning academics or faculty. This means that vital library resource is sometimes tied up delivering 1-2-1 support during a busy period. New academics or faculty have to get up to speed quickly as they have to use many new systems in order to deliver teaching and learning. 

Based on three different routes of feedback, we have created in-application onboarding guides to help support academics to create and edit lists, so meeting student needs and relieving the burden of training by the library team. We looked at each of the personas that use Talis Aspire and their perspective of what 'good' looked like which were used as a basis for this project: 

  • Students - the student research project by Samantha Sharman from the University of Lincoln
  • Academics - Extensive user testing by our User Experience designer (Ana Carrol)
  • Library Teams - Library survey on what good looks like and Academic Training

Objectives of the onboarding guides: 

  • To help academics and faculty to self-start in Talis Aspire so they require less training, including refreshers and guidance from Library and Academic Liaison. 
  • Encourage best practices to improve the structure and annotations of reading lists to support students based on student feedback on what makes a good reading list.

Why onboarding and not support articles or tutorials?

  • User onboarding is the process of continuously guiding your users across the user journey.
  • Helping users to reach that ‘Aha!’ moment quickly, by experiencing repeated value from the system.
  • Getting the job done in the smoothest way possible and remove barriers.

Video walkthrough of the onboarding project and DEMO 


Guides Step-by-Step

We have screenshots of each of the guides here, you are able to skip to a particular guide in this support article using the list below:

Points to note:

  • The guides are designed to only appear for Academics or Faculty, this is configured based on if the user has the List Publisher role
  • The guides do not appear for Students as they don't have a role.
  • The guides do not appear for library staff that have roles such as Library Acquisitions and System Admin. Please share this support article to inform Academic/Faculty facing library colleagues
  • The guides have been ordered to appear at 10 minute intervals unless the Academic or Faculty wishes to advance the guides by clicking 'More tips', to view in one sitting.
  • The guides can be fully dismissed using the 'Not Interested' option, they are designed to help those that need support, not hinder those that don't require it
  • The guides can be snoozed using the 'Remind me later' option
  • The final guide on reminding users to Publish ONLY appears if the Publish button is present. Those using Review Only workflows will not see this final step in the onboarding guides

Guide 1  - Editing and organising your list 


This guide links out to the following articles:

'More tips' take the user to the guide below: Structure your list


Guide 2  - Structure your list


'More tips' takes you to the Add resources guide 


Guide 3  - Add resources 

We have highlighted here the use of the bookmark extension and signposted where you can add this and find the other guide in My Bookmarks (if enabled)


'More tips' takes you to the Actions - Adding 'Note for students' 


Guide 4  - Actions - Adding ‘Note for students’



'More tips' takes to guide Actions - Moving items


Guide 5 - Actions - Moving items


More tips take you to support article Editing lists


Guide 6 - Publish for students to view 

Note, this only applies when a university has the workflow of academics having the option to publish lists and the publish button is available, i.e. the user has made a change that needs to be published.



Frequently asked questions

Q: How do I make these guides live in my tenancy? 

A: We will be releasing the guides to all Talis Aspire tenancies on Friday, 16th September 2022. If you wish your university to be excluded from this release, do raise a support ticket with Talis with your reasons why to help us learn for future developments.

Q: Will we be able to add our own university guides as links?
A: We have made the onboarding guides very generic so not to contradict local guidance and simply be an alternative not like for like replacement. You can add help documentation as a link in the header or footer of your branded tenancy. Initially, we are keen to understand the impact of these onboarding guides before other changes are made. Creating and maintaining multiple versions could lead to issues for end users and create more barriers than it solves so we are not offering this customisation at this time.

Q: I've dismissed the guides but they keep appearing?

We are aware that some adblockers appear to impact on the tutorial. If you can't remove the onboarding guide, disable your adblocker for Talis Aspire.

Have more questions? Submit a request


Article is closed for comments.