In these days of increased competition and limited resources, organizations are being asked to define and measure their value. Universities are asked to report on return on investment. Federal, state, and local institutions must make the case on how well they successfully strengthen their communities. As libraries become involved in these assessment efforts, questions are raised as to how technical services operations define and measure their value to both the library and the parent organization (be it university, community college, law firm, town or city, etc.). Technical services has a long tradition of collecting statistics but how does that translate into defining value or success?
This e-forum will discuss the process of gathering statistics for technical services operations and how they are used to assess the success of technical services. In addition to that, we will explore how libraries are using statistics to measure the value technical services provides to the library and the parent organization or community. The forum will cover a variety of questions including:
- What statistics are collected by technical services and how are they collected.
- The differences between collecting statistics and providing meaningful reports.
- How do technical services utilize statistics to assess the effectiveness of their operations? What benchmarks are used to define success?
- How do technical services operations factor into efforts to define the value of the library to the parent organization or community?
Please join us to talk about how to get the numbers we need and what we should be doing with them once we have them!
Who Should Attend
Anyone with an interest in the topic can benefit from this session and is welcome to participate.
Buddy Pennington is the Director of Collections and Access Management at the University of Missouri – Kansas City, leading library operations in collection development, acquisitions, cataloging and metadata, and electronic resources management. In previous lives he has worked in serials librarian positions as well as serving as a branch manager with the Kansas City Public Library system. He has been active in the North American Serials Interest Group, finishing up a three-year tenure as Executive Board Member at-Large this year.
Sarah Simpson is the Technical Services Manager for the Tulsa City-County Library in Tulsa, OK. She previously co-moderated e-forums on communication between Technical and Public Services and on collections of the future. She is just beginning a major project to revamp statistic gathering, assessment, and reporting for her library.
How to Register
You must register to subscribe to or access an electronic discussion list on ALA's Mailing List Service. Find instructions for subscribing online. Once you have registered for one e-forum, you do not need to register again, unless you choose to leave the list.