The Virtual Special Library: The Next Normal?
We recently convened a focus group to analyze the success factors and challenges of virtual libraries and virtual special librarianship. This has turned out to be particularly timely, given the changes in all our professional lives necessitated by COVID-19, many of which may take shape as organizational strategies in our post-pandemic world.
Volunteer focus group members from law and financial services firms, pharmaceutical companies, government agencies, and trade associations discussed fundamental questions, such as:
- What is the definition of a virtual special library?
- What are the drivers of going virtual?
- What are the pillars that support a successful virtual library?
- What are the benefits and challenges of the virtual library?
- What are the fundamentals of process and technology?
- How does the virtual library impact and change professional development?
- What is the future of virtual libraries?
This new whitepaper presents information discussed during a series of focus group meetings designed to explore virtual librarianship, and to surface important issue areas for further consideration.
The Power of Transformative, Integrated, Measurable Request Management
This whitepaper presents information shared during the event, with valuable insights, regarding:
- the importance of transparency in the request management process
- how to select the “right” metrics and express them through management reports
- real world examples of the power of evidence-based decision-making.
…and don’t forget to read our whitepapers based on previous SLA Hot Topics sessions, including our additional 2019 session, “Don’t Just be Integral: Be Aligned”
Don’t Just Be Integral: Be Aligned
During our SLA Hot Topics Session, “Don’t Just Be Integral, Be Aligned”, the panelists focused on how special librarians can go beyond being integral to their clients’ daily workflow, and become (and remain) aligned with organizational imperatives. Panelists discussed fundamental questions, such as:
- Why is it important to be aligned with your organization’s mission?
- What are the benefits and value of being aligned—to the organization, to the library, to the individual?
- How can you speak the language of your organization’s leadership and why is that important?
They covered topics such as prioritizing and delegating projects based on alignment, strategies for partnering with and leveraging other departments, and practicing alignment without guilt.
This whitepaper presents information shared during the event, with valuable insights—including practical approaches to emulating an “aligned” strategy even when resources are limited.
…and don’t forget to read our whitepapers based on previous SLA Hot Topics sessions.
Don’t Just Be Integrated: Be Integral
Success includes doing more with tools you have and skills you’ve built. Sometimes, “doing more” means becoming “embedded”: evolving beyond subject matter expertise to becoming a truly critical organizational resource.
Panelists responded to questions like:
- What are characteristics of an embedded librarian?
- What are benefits and value of being embedded?
- How can you communicate the value of being embedded?
We present information from the event, combined with valuable insights from panelist interviews conducted in advance—including practical approaches to emulating an “aligned” strategy when resources are limited.
What Does Success Look Like for the Special Library?
Special librarians know that to ensure sustainability they must build a strategy, embrace change, and even create it. They know that the path to success includes doing more with the tools they have, and the skills they’ve built. But do special librarians truly recognize success when they achieve it? Equally important, do they focus on communicating the value of their success to leadership and peers?
Stephen Abram and our panelists discussed important questions, such as:
- What are the characteristics of a successful special library?
- How do you know when you are successful?
- How do you make sure others know you are successful?
- How do you communicate the value of success?
- What are the benefits of success?
Our experts covered topics such as alignment with the strategic objectives of your organization, metrics and measurement (quantitative and qualitative), managerial reporting, storytelling, branding and marketing.
Doing More with More: You Can’t Shrink Your Way to Success
You cannot shrink your way to success. Special Librarians can only do more, with more.
During our SLA Hot Topics session, “Doing More with More: You Can’t Shrink Your Way to Success,” we focused on the success stories of information professionals who are building their libraries’ influence with an orientation towards abundance, not scarcity.
Attendees heard actionable advice from peers who don’t shrink their way to success but instead fill needs via more powerful technology tools, more access and discovery options, and by doing what it takes to exert more influence on organizational knowledge exchange.
This whitepaper presents information shared during the event, combined with additional valuable insights gained from panelist interviews conducted in preparation for the discussion.
Building the Resilient Library
What does it mean to be resilient, and to run a resilient library?
Special librarians achieve sustainability by understanding that end user requirements and forces at work (e.g. new technologies, globalization and a mobile workforce) all demand change. Learn from Lucidea ILS and KM clients who leverage and often create change in order to ensure the sustainability of their libraries and optimize their own roles.
Topics covered include:
- What it means to be resilient, and run a resilient library
- Setting the scene – organizational overviews
- Leveraging and creating change: practical examples
- Securing organizational support – what works
- Examples of impact
- Characteristics of library change agents
Adapt, Act and Thrive
The current information industry landscape is filled with challenges that require tangible solutions and present real opportunities for success when effectively confronted. Believing that librarians and knowledge managers can face these challenges to “Adapt, Act and Thrive,” Lucidea convened a panel of visionary information professionals for a round table discussion at the 2014 Special Libraries Association conference. Sharing their best practices and success stories, panelists provide information professionals with many tangible examples of how they can adapt to challenges, act, and thrive within their organizations and profession.
Panelists shared their best practices for:
- Embedding themselves within their organizations
- Demonstrating value
- Engaging end users
- Managing vendor relationships
- Ensuring and leveraging “info-ubiquity”
The Special Library Primer: Everything You Need to Know
The Integrated Library System (ILS) Primer
10 Reasons To Leave Your Vendor and (Exactly) How to Move on
This short guide offers practical advice on how to assess ILS vendor relationships, and how to prepare for and make the right ILS selection. It’s both a solid review for seasoned library professionals and a good primer for those new to the field.
Succeeding in the World of Special Librarianship
By Stephen Abram
This valuable guide is for special librarians committed to being proactive about their careers. It takes a pragmatic approach to such topics as the importance of relationships, putting technology in its place, developing and planning your strategy, the fundamentals of marketing and selling, managing internal communication for impact and value, and the secrets of client engagement. Succeeding in the World of Special Librarianship will inspire you to take your career to the next level.
Data Sheets and Tech Specs
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GeniePlus Specs Sheet
The Training Portal
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