Library Information Studies-Management of Information Agencies

Library Information Studies-Management of Information Agencies
Read the following case study and prepare a report as outlined in the task below.
Case study: South West University Library

It is noon on another very busy Monday. Kate Kendall, Head of Bibliographic Services at South West University Library, has just returned to her office after attending the weekly Heads of Department meeting. At that meeting she has been able to report that the backlog of cataloguing, largely caused by staff absences through illness, has been reduced to virtually nothing. Now the rest of the senior staff have asked her to give priority to preparing a staff development plan for the library, using her own department as a model, and she has agreed. Part of that plan must include information on performance appraisal for staff.

Kate begins thinking about staff development and what it needs to cover. She has never really thought about staff development as a management practice. However, she is beginning to realise that she has neglected this important area of her management. Some examples of where she may be deficient spring to mind.

• Kate has recently appointed Michelle, the new librarian in Acquisitions. However, at the interviews, which were conducted in rather a rush on a particularly horrendous day, Kate had had to confess to Michelle and the other interviewees that she did not have a current job description for them to consider. She has promised Michelle that she will fix that as soon as possible. She thinks it might also be a good time to look at everyone’s job descriptions, and get them up to date.
• Jennifer, her most experienced full-time subject cataloguer, is departing on Friday to take up a position as a knowledge manager with an increase in pay. Kate feels guilty about losing Jennifer, because she hasn’t had a chance to sit down and have a good talk with her about the prospects for her in the future. She had assumed Jennifer was happy with her work. Now she has to recruit and train a new cataloguer.
• Recent problems with a Library Studies Placement student have raised the need to provide for her supervisors some kind of training in orientation and training skills and methods. Irene, who was in charge of the student, was constantly asking for help, and at times Kate had wondered why she didn’t just take the student’s supervision on herself.
• Kristin, the part-time assistant who assists with shelving, photocopying, filing, and so on, needs to know how to sort out problems when the photocopier breaks down.
Kate takes a few minutes to think about all this. She is beginning to give her staff much more responsibility – ‘but are they ready for it? How can I find out whether they have the necessary skills and abilities to take on these extra responsibilities? What do I do about ensuring they attain the skills they need to do their jobs? Should I also be planning for the future needs of the library…and of the staff…? How do I do that?’
Task
Place yourself in the role of Kate, and prepare and present a plan for introducing a staff development system into the Bibliographic Services Department suggesting it be used as a model for library-wide staff development. Consider that staff development is impacted on by most aspects of human resource management, including:
• recruitment;
• orientation/induction;
• training;
• continuing professional development; and
• performance appraisal

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