LDP vs. In-App Reporting


A report in FOLIO is categorized as either an "LDP report" or an "in-app report".

An in-app report is typically an ILS function in the day-to-day operation of the library that has traditionally been implemented using an ILS reporting system.

An LDP report is based on the Library Data Platform (LDP) which is being developed as a deployable software platform and data warehouse for FOLIO that offers forward-looking analytics capabilities to support strategic decisions of the library.


An LDP report is created as a database query and uses data in the LDP.  In contrast, an in-app report is normally implemented as a feature within a FOLIO app and uses data retrieved directly from FOLIO's operational databases via one or more apps.  (A third potential category, which is out of scope of this document, is that a report can be written as a script—for example in Python—which retrieves operational data in the same way as retrieved by an in-app report but is implemented outside of a FOLIO app.)

This distinction between LDP and in-app reports may be unfamiliar or confusing, because in traditional ILS systems all reporting was typically done using the operational database or a replicated copy of it.  However, the distinction is fairly intuitive and is not arbitrary; see below for a summary.

In order to maintain consistency of design within the initial development phase of FOLIO, in cases where a report does not seem to fit exclusively within one of these categories or to follow precedent cases, a recommendation should be made in consultation with the LDP (or FOLIO) architect.

In-App Reporting

In-app reports are best suited as part of implementing the day-to-day business operations of a library, including basic browsing and filtering of data.  They use data directly from FOLIO apps which at all times reflect the current state of library data.

Example:  Generate a report listing patrons that currently have overdue books.

LDP Reporting

LDP reports are best suited to supporting strategic decisions of the library and for use in predictive modeling, but they are also good for performing a wide range of traditional reporting functions.  For simple browsing/filtering of data or day-to-day business operations, in-app reporting should be used instead.

LDP reporting uses specialized databases in the LDP that offer features for analytics and are updated intermittently from the data in FOLIO apps.  These databases are designed to retain historical data, and the data optionally may be de-identified (e.g. personal data may be anonymized).

Example:  Generate a report that shows circulation trends over time, by patron group and other categories, to support strategic decisions about resource allocation.