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Redesigning Technical Services By Reconceptualizing Staff University of Connecticut Libraries Francine M. DeFranco Living the Future VI April 7, 2006.

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Presentation on theme: "Redesigning Technical Services By Reconceptualizing Staff University of Connecticut Libraries Francine M. DeFranco Living the Future VI April 7, 2006."— Presentation transcript:

1 Redesigning Technical Services By Reconceptualizing Staff University of Connecticut Libraries Francine M. DeFranco Living the Future VI April 7, 2006

2 The University of Connecticut Libraries Mid-sized ARL Research I Institution Serves 6 campuses and 2 departmental libraries 1100 faculty, 26,000 students 110 library staff 7 Library Functional Areas 2.2 million volumes, 27,000+ electronic journals 5.5 million acquisitions budget 4.4 devoted to electronic resources (> from 50/50 to 60/40 print to electronic journals split) Increasing user expectations…

3 The Collections Services Area Who We Area and What We Do Five area teams: Acquisitions, Cataloging, Collection Development, Preservation, Stacks 30 staff: 12 librarians and 18 professional staff Perform technical services functions for UConn Libraries’ six campuses Perform traditional and non-traditional functions that select, acquire, catalog, preserve, maintain, and shelve or provide access to library collections in all formats

4 UConn Collections Services Director Acquisitions/Serials Team (9) Print/Non Print orders Electronic resource mgt Serials receipt Journals binding Catalog and Metadata Services Team (8) Original cataloging Copy/Complex copy Metadata Database mgt Collection Development Team (3) Social Sciences, Humanities and Sciences Collection development Preservation Team (7) Preservation Conservation Shelf prep Monographs binding Stacks Management Team (3) Shelving materials Shifting Relocation Stacks maintenance

5 Previous Staffing Scale and Scope Perform traditional functions associated with acquisitions, budgeting, licensing, cataloging and metadata creation, collection development, preservation and conservation, and stacks management Rely on staff from other functional areas for technical/technology support, public services perspective, broad liaison input, feedback from users, circulation and interlibrary loan data

6 Change Drivers and Challenges Need for advanced technical skills to support changing technologies User driven needs and expectations for more electronic resources Need to address roles/responsibilities from a holistic, big picture perspective Expectation that collections will continue to support university wide changes in research needs, student learning, and academic initiatives Decrease in funding base; increase in electronic resources costs and demands Continued emphasis on the “Library as Place”

7 Demands on Technical Services Staff: Problems We Faced Need for diverse technical skills Struggle to keep up with internal/external expectations Roles and responsibilities related to electronic resource management Limited ability to work independently and/or complete tasks requiring technical skills or a public service perspective

8 Demands on Technical Services Staff: Problems We Faced Time to review work processes and develop plans to make changes and revitalize staff Ability to build, preserve, and provide access to digital collections Need to incorporate all perspectives into technical services work Doing work quickly, accurately, efficiently, and economically!

9 Why Make Changes – What’s in this for us? Collection Services wanted to provide excellent service to staff and users in support of the Libraries’ mission, vision, and strategic goals Collections Services staff wanted to provide their colleagues with expertise, problem-solving strategies, and effective collaboration and communication Collections Services staff wanted to improve our culture and work environment Collections Services staff wanted to be viewed as successful

10 What We Had Going for Us Staff with long standing university library experience Staff with strong technical services skill sets Staff willing to learn and implement new skills and workflows Common agreement that we could no longer continue without changes Staff willing to consider options and alternatives to support the organizational mission and move the Libraries forward

11 What We Did Undergo an Area Review using outside consultants Review consultant report and begin implementation of action plan Hire new staff to address skill and capacity needs Build and enhance skill sets among current staff Promote area workflow changes and staff skills Initiate regular communication within and beyond Area Develop realistic, measurable Area goals and metrics

12 Change Timeline Summer 2004 to Spring 2006 Spring 2004 - Engage consultants Summer/Fall 2004 - Conduct meetings with staff to vision the future Winter 2004 - Review consultants report and action plan Spring 2005 - Begin implementation of action plan Spring/Summer 2005 – Determine staff for vacancies, develop new job descriptions, interview and hire staff Fall 2005/Spring 2006 – Integrate new staff into area, initiate new workflows, develop new mechanisms for handling tasks

13 What Has Changed Area has moved from traditional technical services staffing, work, and workflows to a more holistic approach to accomplishing technical services work Area staff work collaboratively with other library staff Area staff attend other area and team meetings for information sharing and updates Increased participation on the Libraries cross functional teams Improved communication within and beyond area Area environment now more respectful, supportive, and productive

14 Impact of Staff Changes on Technical Services Enhanced esprit de corps and improved area reputation among library staff Increased technical and public services perspective among staff Improved communication within and beyond area Ability to work independently and collaboratively to complete work Enhanced analytical and problem solving ability Identification of training needs and a plan for staff training Better understanding that the whole is equal to the sum of its parts

15 Questions? Comments? Thank you! Francine DeFranco Director, Collections Services

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