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Wednesday, November 7 • 5:45pm - 6:45pm
20 Using a community of practice approach to transform: How an academic library collections unit re-organized to meet growing demands for e-resources and services during a time of institutional change.

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In recent years, acquisitions and collection management at the University of South Florida (USF) Library was operating with uncertain budgets, downsizing staff, and suffered a loss of institutional knowledge and skillsets. The dynamic research and learning environment at USF was characterized by growing patron needs for diverse electronic resources. In response, library administrators implemented a strategy of organizing technical services staff into a community of practice with three key elements. The three elements included redefining job descriptions, creating new operational workflows and building new work areas. This poster illustrates how the collections department at USF was re-cast by modifying staff organization and associated work spaces into collaborative teams. The team approach has focused skills sets on multi-format collection problem solving and enhanced service delivery to library patrons. The re-organization has transformed a department previously centered on processing print publications to a department focused on managing diverse activities including evidence-based acquisitions programs in both e-book and streaming formats as well as diverse e-journal and database subscriptions. Poster session attendees will learn strategies on how to re-frame academic library technical service staff organizations and associated operations during times of change. The information also contributes to the body of research in library space planning by presenting operational aspects of academic libraries often only occasionally portrayed in the scholarly literature, yet integral to library wide collaborative efforts in offering services and facilitating collections.


John Abresch

Assistant Librarian, University of South Florida
John Abresch is an Acquisitions/Collections Librarian in the Academic Resources Department at University of South Florida Library. John’s professional responsibilities are with acquisitions functions as well as engaging in collection planning activities. His research interests... Read More →

Wednesday November 7, 2018 5:45pm - 6:45pm EST
Carolina Ballroom, Francis Marion Hotel