This is the sixth and final post in our series about the major challenges to library success. The same challenges to sustainability keep surfacing during our conversations with information management professionals, no matter the organization size, sector or geography. Please read on for our thoughts on the sixth most pressing issue special librarians are facing today—the perception that all ILS options are too costly, and still generic.
At first glance, it can indeed appear that the differences between ILS platforms are negligible, and that a system with the KM power to help you successfully tackle the first 5 challenges is beyond your financial reach. However, there definitely are ILS and KM solutions that are different, that are affordable, and which, like SydneyEnterprise, are purpose-built with the evolving needs of information professionals in mind.
What we hear
“We need to upgrade our KM solution, but I can’t afford a big system and I’m tired of looking at one ILS after the other; they are all the same.”
When real, powerful and purpose-built ILS and KM solutions are seen as “out of reach,” inertia takes over… and your IT department will make the decision for you.
Overcoming the Challenge
In fact, IT can be your biggest ally in supporting change, because a “win” for you is also a win for them. Set the stage for a very strong business case by addressing challenges strategically, so as to align your department with your stakeholders and users’ success, and to connect the dots between organizational performance and knowledge assets.
When it comes to tackling those unique factors that can support change, it’s never one size fits all. Selecting an ILS/KM application requires a collaborative project management approach; one that includes the development of tangible return-on-investment (ROI) and is supported by an IT-sponsored business case. You can achieve this when you work with a solution-oriented partner who truly understands the needs of your library, and who can also help you connect departmental priorities to the business needs of your organization.
The bottom line
Aligning yourself with a solution partner (versus just another ILS vendor) who understands that your mutual success keeps you both sustainable is critical. That understanding is what drives us at Lucidea to base everything we do on our six core beliefs: access, discovery, independence, integration, security, and partnership.
We know that:
- The library can be a contender!
- You can educate senior management and show that KM is valuable
- The right ILS/KM solution can empower you to provide and manage sensitive and/or
- The IT department will see your system as the single venue for knowledge assets
- You can manage, upgrade and customize your own application
You deserve an ILS and KM solution that is different, affordable, and purpose-built with your evolving needs in mind. It does exist. Do not settle.
If you’ve faced and/or addressed this challenge, we’d love to hear about your experiences. Please share via the comments box below.
Special libraries, archives, and museums can boost engagement through crowdsourcing transcription, which is also the perfect volunteer opportunity.
Skills for special librarians include using learning theories such as connectivism; users need to see connections between information sources
Medical librarians share professional development goals and needs with other special librarians; the MLA provides learning opportunities.
Gagne’s Nine Events of Instruction can be used for class planning to help get your special library students in the correct mental state for learning.