Contribution to Books
Boise State University’s Albertsons Library undertook a substantial collection downsizing project in 2017. A survey tool was developed to investigate whether this project would strengthen working relationships between technical services staff and librarians. The survey would allow us to assess the process and its outcomes and gain insight into the emotions of those participating in the project. Survey results showed librarians and staff members had different experiences during the project. Librarians experienced more anxiety during the process than staff. More staff than librarians felt that there was a barrier to sharing their expertise due to their job role. Perceptions of technical services and librarians were not significantly changed throughout the process, although survey comments indicated an increased collegiality among staff and librarians as a result of the project. The comments of the survey respondents revealed that a high-level strategy for weeding and a shared understanding of objectives and best practices would have given the project more cohesion, supported buy-in, and increased participation. Using a survey such as this prior to undertaking a large-scale weeding process would help identify communication preferences, areas where training is needed, and best practices to use for the project. A similar survey after the project would evaluate the success of implantation from the perspective of library employees.
This document was originally published in Library Technical Services: Adapting to a Changing Environment by Purdue University Press. Copyright restrictions may apply.
Aagard, Mary C.; Rosenheim, Nancy; Hooyboer, Marlena; and Folkner, Cheri A. (2020). "Building Better Collections Through Relationships: Sharing Expertise During Collection Downsizing". In S. Marien (Ed.), Library Technical Services: Adapting to a Changing Environment (Charleston Insights in Library, Archival, and Information Sciences series, pp. 105-120). Purdue University Press.