At JCPL, we’ve been busy envisioning a whole new library service model for Jefferson County, one that:
- Begins with a deep understanding of the communities it serves;
- Provides fresh and engaging library materials that reflect the evolving interests of our communities;
- Increases the availability of high-demand materials, so that people coming in are able to find and check out things they want without having to wait;
- Provides access to evolving technologies to support our patrons, communities and Library operations;
- Provides expert staff who can help patrons navigate the increasingly complex world of information and technology;
- Creates a rich, interactive online library experience, 24/7;
- Offers engaging and impactful programs that contribute to positive community outcomes;
- Creates a warm, open and inviting environment where residents can come together for community interaction and exchange;
- Strengthens outreach initiatives; and
- Leverages the power of community partnerships.
While our vision is complete, the full implementation of this new service model will take some time. As always, we’re required to balance our unlimited potential with our limited resources. However, while that can be challenging, I’m confident we’ll find our way.
In the past few months, we’ve introduced a whole new staffing model. We’ve redefined the roles of library employees so that our community gets the best possible response to their information needs, and our residents get the best possible value from their tax dollar.
We’ve moved many of our staff into new jobs, accountabilities, and/or locations and created robust training programs to help them meet the information demands of the 21st century. Key changes include:
- New roles designed to enhance the patron experience and improve operational effectiveness;
- Enhanced opportunities for growth and professional development;
- More cross training, so that more employees can respond immediately to patron needs;
- Enhanced technology training, so that staff can assist patrons with the increasing variety and complexity of devices patrons use to access information;
- Enhanced opportunities to tap into staff expertise, through web content creation, program development and customer service;
- Greater expectations for community engagement and outreach; and
- A sharpened focus on outcomes and results.
While much of this has gone on quietly, behind the scenes, some patrons have noticed that a favorite staff member may have changed jobs or locations. Not to worry; I predict you’ll soon find new favorites as we go forward.
We are working to create an environment where we delight and surprise our patrons with new levels of service excellence. We’ll be implementing more pieces of our vision and sharing our accomplishments as they unfold. But for now, I want to applaud our staff for their creativity and courage in embracing this change.
As ever, they are working diligently to make your library experiences better and better!