Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Technical Services Workflow Analysis OLC Technical Services Retreat Mohican Resort & Conference Center April 1, 2008 Morag Boyd and Connie Strait.

Similar presentations

Presentation on theme: "Technical Services Workflow Analysis OLC Technical Services Retreat Mohican Resort & Conference Center April 1, 2008 Morag Boyd and Connie Strait."— Presentation transcript:

1 Technical Services Workflow Analysis OLC Technical Services Retreat Mohican Resort & Conference Center April 1, 2008 Morag Boyd and Connie Strait

2 Workflow Analysis: Why and How Morag Boyd The Ohio State University Libraries

3 Definitions  Workflow is the process, progress, or "flow" of work within a system and the rate at which that happens  Workflow analysis refers to observing how this process takes place. The analysis also involves evaluating the process and improving it for efficiency and effectiveness.

4 What is is not It is all about the PROCESS, it is NOT:  Individual performance evaluation  Satisfaction measurement

5 What are we trying to study  Goal achievement  Resource usage All necessary tasks are being performed No unnecessary tasks are being performed Tasks are being performed effectively and efficiently  Causes of known problems  Opportunities to respond to changes

6 Efficiency  “measured by a comparison of production with cost” Merriam-Webster  Rate of work Time to shelf Minimizing repeated handling of materials  Resources needed to do the work Correctly matching skills and tasks Utilization of software to maximum benefit

7 Effectiveness  “producing a decided, decisive, or desired effect” Merriam-Webster  Quality of work Error rates Following appropriate rules and policy  Choice of work Aligning work with library priorities Meeting short and long term needs

8 Planning a Study  Invest in planning  Clarify goals and expectations Be sure to include all staff Try to reassure that purpose is not to target staff  Define your scope and stick to it  Informal or formal study?  Internal or external?

9 Steps in a Study  Clarify the environment you work in  Define the goals of the department  Examine existing data  Gather new data  Document existing workflow  Identify potential changes  Implement  Repeat

10 Environmental Factors  Staff changes  More electronic, still have print  Different library user needs and expectation  Different internal library needs and expectations  New technology or software

11 Data and Sources  Need a variety of data from multiple sources. Draw your conclusions from the totality of the data  Quantitative: Things that you count  Qualitative: Things that you observe  Internal  External

12 Data You Probably Have  Statistics on orders, cataloging, processing, catalog maintenance, etc. Manually collected Generated from ILS, OCLC, vendors, as appropriate Again, multiple sources can be helpful  Materials budget and its breakdown  Number of FTE staff  Job descriptions

13 Gather New Data  Interviews  Time and task logging Cost study, particularly if considering outsourcing  Investigate other options  External data

14 External Data  Literature Review  Select and investigate comparator libraries Comparable Aspiration Different  Site visits to other libraries  Conversations with other libraries about their workflows

15 Map Existing Workflows  Different people need information in different ways  Diagramming can make it very clear how straightforward your processes are (or not) Detailed, but not exhaustive  Narrative can help explain the workflow  An actual map of the flow of material Will help analyze speed, space or repeated physical handling type problems

16 Graves & Arthur, 2006

17 Dragon & Barricella, 2006: 11

18 Backlogs  Identify any backlogs Remember the invisible backlogs too  Characteristics of backlog  Size is secondary to nature

19 Evaluation  Step back and look at your workflow Where is your diagram confusing? Where are the bottlenecks?  What ideas did staff have?  What did you learn about other services?  What was surprising?  What did you already know?

20 Characteristics of Optimal Workflow  Workflow is built for the mainstream, not the exceptions  Each function handles material once  Rush materials can be processed in specified time period  Overall time to shelf meets library needs  Quality of work meets needs  Job descriptions and time allocation represent all responsibilities of the unit  No duplication of data or effort

21 Outcomes  Identify strengths and troublespots  Tasks not done efficiently and effectively  Tasks that could be dropped  Tasks that are not getting done  Solutions to these problems  Recommendation: Written report

22 Implementation  Pick your battles  Make those quick and easy fixes Small things can have big impacts  Reallocate existing resources (staff, space, software, services, etc.)  Allocate new resources  Work with others towards external change

23 It’s Not Over Yet! Iterative Process:  Implement new workflow  Assess new workflow Important to collect comparable data in initial and post-adjustment study  Identify any continuing or new workflow problems  Repeat as needed

24 Technical Services Workflow Analysis : a local saga Connie Strait Greene County Public Library

25 Internal vs. External A real life story at GCPL

26 Internal Workflow Analysis  Short history  Staff changes  New location  Backlog

27 Internal  What problems? What routines? What to do?  Talk to your people.  Visit your friends.  Count and observe.  Eliminate the unnecessary - tasks, labels, paper copies, etc.

28 Prior to making changes  Get buy-in  Plan the implementation  Do it  Go back and assess.

29 External Workflow Analysis  Why do it?

30 If your boss suggests it…  This is a good place to start.  1. Make the phone call.  2. Tell your staff and all other departments. No vacation please.  3. Allow plenty of TIME.  4. Buy food.  5. After the interview sessions, relax.

31 Suggestions from consultants  Remember that they are suggestions and not decision. Your team makes the decisions.  Those that can be implemented right away, should be.  If money is a problem, talk to the purse string holders.  Use your ILS to the max, given your local constraints!

32 Each day is a new day!  You can and should assess the new routines every few months in your Technical Services department.  Those items on the “wish list” should also be addressed at the same time.

33 THANK YOU! Morag Boyd Special Collections Metadata Librarian The Ohio State University Libraries 614-247-8622 Connie Strait Head of Technical Services Greene County Public Library 937-352-4007 Ext 6301

Download ppt "Technical Services Workflow Analysis OLC Technical Services Retreat Mohican Resort & Conference Center April 1, 2008 Morag Boyd and Connie Strait."

Similar presentations

Ads by Google