The Frenchman wants to do some incoming business early next month - with the club being strongly linked with moves for Forest Green defender Liam Kitching and Norwich City forward Carlton Morris, both on their list of targets.
The other priority is extending the loan of Matty James for the rest of the season.
On the outgoing front, Ismael - keen on keeping all of the core players in his squad together - says that he has spoken with Reds chief executive officer Dane Murphy about players who are currently unhappy at their lack of game time under him and says that he is expecting exits in January.
League One sides Sunderland and Oxford United have been linked with winger Luke Thomas, with Black Cats thought to be leading the race, while other players such as Elliot Simoes have not featured regularly under Ismael.
On players leaving the club, Ismael said: “We will see. For sure, we will have movement in both directions.
“We want to have some new players and for sure, some players at the moment are unhappy and I can understand that they all want to play and maybe we have to find a solution in January for the player.
“We need players who are completely for Barnsley FC and want to do this way with us. If one player is unhappy, we have to speak and find a solution.
“I spoke last week about all the situations with Dane and I am happy. We spoke about some players in our squad (and) about the possibility to leave permanently or on loan.
“We will have to see and speak with the player about what the player wants and find the solution.
"Now, for sure, the time is coming and we have to make the decision.”