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Tech Training for Staff: California Tech Core Competencies Sarah Houghton-Jan Information & Web Services Manager, San Mateo County Library

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Presentation on theme: "Tech Training for Staff: California Tech Core Competencies Sarah Houghton-Jan Information & Web Services Manager, San Mateo County Library"— Presentation transcript:

1 Tech Training for Staff: California Tech Core Competencies Sarah Houghton-Jan Information & Web Services Manager, San Mateo County Library

2 Technology competencies are a list of things staff should know how to do with technology in order to do their jobs.

3 You dont need competencies if …every staff member is an expert in every technology you are currently using. …every staff member is self-motivated to keep up with new technologies and self- train on everything.

4 You do need competencies if Some staff know more than others You want everyone to be able to help your users equally

5 You do need competencies if Your library is adding new technologies to the workplace The library lacks a coordinated technology training program

6 How many of us might need competencies?

7 CLAs Competencies Competencies for California Librarians in the 21st Century (1998): r_competencies.php r_competencies.php Technology Core Competencies for California Library Workers (2005): tech_core_competencies.pdf tech_core_competencies.pdf tech_core_competencies.pdf

8 CLA Tech Competencies Developed by a taskforce of CLA members from the Information Technology Section and the Continuing Education Committee. Two sections: All Staff & Additional Targeted Competencies for Reference, Instructional, and Management Staff The Assembly and Executive Board approved the competencies.

9 Purpose of CLA Tech Comps This set of competencies is intended to serve as a base model for technology competencies among California Library Workers. California's libraries are incredibly diverse; there are many different types and sizes of libraries, different staffing, and different technology. The purpose of these competencies is not to be the guidepost by which all libraries measure technology skills, but rather to serve as a starting point for libraries to use in assessing their staff's technology proficiencies, and to assist libraries in building their own sets of tailored competencies to fit with their unique staff and library. From Competencies Introduction

10 CLA Competencies Sample Security Know what security software is used on staff and public computers and how it protects the computers Identify spam Be aware of the potential security and privacy threats while using email and the Internet (including cookies, downloading malicious files, unsecured communications, viruses, e-mail hoaxes, spyware, adware, and phishing)

11 How will competencies help? Job descriptions Evaluations Reveals training needs Addresses feelings of inequity Help staff adjust and handle change

12 Ten Questions Before Starting 1. What is your purpose? Write it out! 2. Who does the lead work? –project manager and/or team 3. Who identifies the competencies? –Position reps, management, how many people? 4. Tech competencies or all competencies? 5. Core or extensive list?

13 Ten Questions Before Starting 6.What constitutes technology? 7.Specific to the hardware and software you have now, or more general? 8.Do you have a timeline in mind? 9.Base on classification, position, location, or pay step? 10.Base on full-time/part-time/substitute, or desire for promotion/bonus?

14 The Competency Cycle

15 Getting Staff Buy In Have a purpose statement. Ask staff for their input and use it. Keep everyone informed at all steps. Reassure staff that they dont have to have all competencies now. Train managers first (if possible). Managers must allow staff to attend training.

16 Brainstorming for the leaders Literature search (find articles & competencies) Existing position descs. or requirements Professional associations requirements Librarys strategic goals What do your customers need to know?

17 Brainstorming for everyone else Elicit input from staff through: –brainstorming session –e-mail discussion group –Blog or wiki –committees Elicit input from outside experts and stakeholders (consultants, governing bodies, public, students)

18 Competency Types Descriptive –Understand how e-mail folders work to create an organized file-keeping system. Task-based –Delete e-mails, move e-mails between folders, and archive old e-mails. Maybe some of each…

19 Structure Options Organize by staff position or area –Reference, Circulation, Tech Services, Management, Library Assistant 1, Reference Librarian (Adult), Reference Librarian (Kids) Organize by competency –Allow local managers to determine if the competency applies to their staff

20 Organizational Options Split into personal vs. professional competencies Basic competencies and accelerated / advanced competencies

21 Categories: Broad HardwareSoftwareSkills Source prefers to remain anonymous Gratuitous cat photo, since the slide was kind of empty

22 Categories: Moderate TerminologyHardwareSoftwareSecurityTroubleshooting Library Resources Search Skills Public Computers California Library Association

23 Categories: Specific Computer Operation/Setup/Maintenance Word Processing/Introducory Desktop Publishing Spreadsheet/GraphicsDatabasesNetworking Knowledge Areas Telecommunications Media Communications and Integration Design and Management of Learning Environment and Resources Learning Diversity Social/Legal/Ethical Issues Building Level Technical Support Etc. Colorado Dept. of Education

24 Format Options Format can include one or both elements: the competency and the assessment tool Formatting could be… –Grid –Short Outline –Narrative paragraphs

25 Skill Applies to Job MeetsComments Open browser xx Show/hide toolbars Know library URL xx Create bookmarks x Cant find on toolbar Grid 1

26 SkillBasicAdvanced Internet Browser xx Printer Troubleshooting xx Catalog Searching x File Organization x Grid 2

27 Outline Library Resources Be familiar with and able to locate the librarys technology-related policies & procedures Be familiar with the librarys intranet, if applicable Be familiar with the librarys e-resources – –Know the webpage address for your library – –Know what resources can be found on your library homepage – –Know the webpage address for the librarys catalog – –Know how to search by author, title, keyword, and subject in the catalog California Library Association

28 Paragraph The operating system is the software foundation that enables computers to process information, manipulate data, and provide output to users. It stands to reason that a rudimentary knowledge of how it functions is critical if staff are to be successful in manipulating the information resources. Staff must have a working knowledge of the platform on which their computers sit, an understanding of the interface and desktop environment, the ability to format floppy disks, the ability to create and manage files, and a thorough understanding of how to gain access to the various networks available from a given platform. Upper Hudson Library System

29 Text or web? Use a text or web option –Word document –Blog with entries for each competency (tagged) –Wiki –Simple HTML page Web options would allow hyperlinks from each competency to a brief how-to.

30 Include Inspiring Competencies Include ongoing learning: Continually develops skills in using technological tools (King County Library) Include critical thinking: Demonstrating an understanding of the librarys role and responsibility for introducing applications of technology to the public. and Demonstrating willingness to step outside of the box to achieve and maintain smooth library operations. (U Alabama U Libraries)

31 Competency Tips Beware subjective adjectives If using self-assessments, have three choices: yes, no, or maybe Provide a technology terms glossary All new-hires should complete the assessment

32 Assessment Objective assessment (test or quiz) –Automated by computer –Manually by supervisor Subjective assessment –Self assessing from a checklist Who reviews the results of the assessments? of the assessments? Authority Important

33 Assessment Tools Online (on the cheap) –User SurveyMonkey etc. –Create simple webform Paper –Multiple choice quiz –Essay questions –True/false questions –Simple Checklist of skills

34 No Training = No Point Training should be viewed as a necessity, not a luxury; as mandatory, not voluntary; and as comprehensive, not superficial…. The consequence of poor training will be that our users will lose confidence in librarians… -- A. Krissoff and L. Konrad. Computer Training for Staff and Patrons. Computers in Libraries, Janusary 1998, Vol. 18 Issue 1.

35 Scheduled Learning One-on-one buddy system training Location-by-location training for common and important topics Large centralized group training –Consultants, in-house trainers? Hold each session at least twice!!!

36 Unscheduled Learning Give staff 15 minutes a day to study/learn. Schedule 1 off-desk hour specifically for self- study. Encourage conference attendance. Online tutorials, printed materials, demos.

37 Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenberg County Learning 2.0 Initiative Blog: 23 Things Finishing staff received MP3 players

38 Preparing a Training Session Chunk out the various topics Clarify the purpose of the training Decide the session format Prepare a lesson plan Have take-away handouts Advertise the class to all staff in multiple media

39 During the Training Session Teach new procedures sequentially Stop for questions (count to ten) Periodically ask for group comprehension Interactive and collaborative Follow-up sessions, especially when teaching a new procedure © Kevin Eikenberry Group

40 Training Tips Increase training budget Keep trainings under 2 hours. Open trainings to all staff…period. If using buddy system, match skill levels. Set goals and rewards Use real world examples There is such a thing as untrainable. –What to do?

41 Holding People to It Annual reviews Goal-setting Rewards for success Consequences for failure –Ongoing training –Transfer –Pay step decrease –Demotion

42 But Sarah, youre so mean! If staff dont meet the bare minimum required to do the job, who suffers? –Other staff –The image of the library –The customers Allowing that is whats mean.

43 Determining Success Compare first round of assessments to assessments after each round of training Survey staff before and after about their confidence in their abilities Use anecdotal evidence from tech staff, patrons, managers

44 Reassessment Review competencies periodically New competencies require new training

45 Other Good Tech Competencies St. Michaels College Library: The Library Network: Oakland Public Library (from 98, but still good): ALA Gov Docs RoundTable:

46 Other Resources My upcoming book (Spring) for ALA Library Technology Reports Skills for the 21 st Century Librarian by Meredith Farkas: 20 Technology Skills Every Educator Should Have by Laura Turner:

47 To sum up…. Use the CLA and other competencies as a starting point Customize the competencies to meet your own organization Follow the circle of competencies process See your staffs tech knowledge grow!

48 Questions? Sarah Houghton-Jan IM: LibrarianInBlack

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