Public Services Steering Committee
March 06, 2002
Members Present: Rich Bennett, Gary Cornwell, Lori Driscoll, Carol Drum, Jan Swanbeck, and Carol Turner
- There are now DVD players in Room 107 in MSL. An additional four will be placed in the public area.
- MSL Circulation staff will issue computer user cards.
- User Surveys:
- Carol T. distributed website usability studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, New York University, and the University of Texas at Austin.
- Lori Driscoll developed a usability study that she submitted for IRB. It was a simple proposal that looked at how people navigate through main pages to second and third level pages. If the committee would like to review it she can make it available.
- SPIT – Strategic Planning Implementation Taskforce
Steve distributed an email to all department chairs requesting a review/update of the last goals and objectives. If any have been completed they should be closed out. If any remain unaccomplished there should be a statement as to why. Dale needs to submit this information to the Provost. Information that was on the annual reports that were submitted to Dale has not been included. Updates should be sent to Steve with a copy to Carol T.
- Five Star Service
- Public Service has not addressed the goals/objectives and the balanced score card as a division.
There is an implementation committee that will oversee the process and give direction and make sure that we move along
and do something.
Carol T. would like PSSC to look at policy issues. These will be documented on the Public Services web page as policies
that need to be put in place or as something that needs discussion. In looking at the five goals, when you get down to all the
objectives and different aspects for each one there is a lot to accomplish. Carol thought it would be natural for Public
Services to start with five star service.
- Lori D. – The implementation committee will identify five main objectives that they will recommend action on.
They will be related to bigger projects and will be interdepartmental. There are a couple of objectives that are easy to accomplish or that are natural extensions
of projects already in process. These objectives will occur in addition to the main five. The committee’s members have
been asked to get input from all departments about what people think are the top priorities. The committee is gathering a list
of all the inter-departmental committees. Each of those committees will be asked to identify objectives that are natural
extensions of projects already in process.
- Carol T. - Given we are implementing a new LMS, will be constructing a new building, and renovating Library West
PSSC should be working on making sure that a high level of service quality will be retained during these periods.
- Rich B. – The committee should review things that have been established but not implemented that related to this topic.
For example, the Guidelines for Performance Standards. Also, the work that was done a couple of years ago for baseline
- Carol D. – MSL had a staff meeting where Carol asked if they would like to express their ideas about what we can do
for five star service. It was determined that a better job needs to be done with referrals. It was suggested to have a card at
the desk that can be given to a patron with a referral name, email address, and phone number and/or a card the patron can
fill out that could be given to the selector. The other idea was to list whom to contact on the top of the subject pages.
The ability for patrons to have lap top access would allow them to have word processing capabilities. This could be
accomplished with plug-ins or perhaps wireless. Some reference interview training needs to be conducted. When patrons
come to the desk reference staff should leave the floor to help the patron find the book.
- Gary C. – A library wide mandatory session(s) is needed at the beginning of each semester to meet with students that
work in the library to inform them what is expected. Training could also be incorporated in this session.
- Carol D- Currently, students are only given basic training and then they are trained on different situations when they
come up which is a problem. While searching the web looking for staff pages at different universities she ran across a
wonderful training manual at the University of Kentucky. MSL is looking at duplicating it here. She sent it to Patrick Reakes
and Ann Lindell. It may be useful to have an overall student-training manual for Reference and a manual for Circulation.
- Gary C. – A manual will not help with attitude problems which are prevalent at all of our service points.
- Carol T. – Student should be aware that the whole time they are at work it is their role to give patrons that come in a
positive library experience.
- Lori D. – There is a need to address permanent staff attitudes. In Access Services each supervisor has their own
training manual. They are trying to get the department to view themselves as a department, to have standards together.
Procedures should be separate from expectations. Currently, there is an expectation in the library that a Circ student is
going to go into the stacks and help a patron find a book even though they have never been trained to read a call number or
shelve a book. To help with this situation she has ordered the software, LC EZ and Dewey EZ. There are different modules
and it takes about 15-20 minutes to progress through all of them with a test at the end where they drag and drop books.
Thus far managers as well as students like the software. At the end of the semester when there is a big pile in the back she
hopes to bring students out to shelf.
- Carol D. – We have limited staff. How do we balance giving five star service to one person when four people are
waiting in line and perhaps their service has dropped to one star?
- Rich B. – What does five star service mean in a state public university setting? We must recognize what our market is.
- Carol T. - It might be helpful if we did something basic to promote with five star service with the staff. Perhaps
something like “Five Rules for Five Star Service”. Four of those could be look up call numbers, go to the shelf, make
referrals, and acknowledge good service when you see your colleagues providing it.
- Jan S. – When a patron comes to the desk staff should establish eye contact and get out of their seat to assist them.
- Rich B. – Staff should know the importance of not of letting a patron go away unhappy without giving them a referral to a manager.
- Lori D. – In other places that she has worked they have used performance standards to develop a peer review rating that
is tallied by an independent source and the results are given to the person to be included in their self evaluation. It wasn’t
used to give a performance rating it was used more for personal improvement.
- Lori D. – She has asked staff to define what five star service means within their job and to find a way to measure that.
Storage and recalls have identified turn around time. The committee should keep the definition of five star service broad.
- Rich B. – The notion of good referrals is fundamental. We must ingrain in staff that its ok to not to be able to fully answer
a question and that we don’t want patrons going away without the organization having done what it can to address a patron’s needs. Approachability is another.
- Carol T. – It is useful to have discussions in the department but it also useful to have town meetings.
- Jan S. – It would be useful to have a meeting with Circ and Reference staff together.
- Carol T. – We have discussed planning for a training session for students and making a referral form. Perhaps we should
have a forum on services to let staff know what we have discussed about the Five Basic Elements of Five Star Service.
Carol T. will draft a document and disperse it to the committee for review. Carol asked the committee to discuss this in each
of their departments and to review the guidelines for performance standards. It will come up again in the ARL Culture of
Assessment Workshop in June. The idea is that it is a good thing to evaluate all the time.
- Lori D. – What is the meaning to Circ staff of “delivering resources and services to patrons when and where they are
needed” and “appropriate intellectual level and in the format desired.” Gary indicated that this was a result of the work of
the desktop committee surveying the faculty to see what service they wanted, how the wanted it delivered and what format
they preferred. Faculty indicated they would prefer to request and get material from the library electronically. It is a
component of desktop delivery.
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