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  1. 1. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 67 MANAGERIAL SKILLS IN DIGITAL EPOCH: LIBRARIAN’S ROLE & COMPETENCY Leela Dhar Mangi Assistant Librarian at Sher-e-Kashmir-University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology and Research Scholar, Department of Library and Information Science, University of Jammu, (Jammu & Kashmir)-180001 ABSTRACT This paper attempts to highlight the ever changing and ever increasing requirement of managerial skills due to digitization and technological changes and role of librarians in fulfilling clientele’s information requirements in an epoch where university libraries are highly influenced by the constant and rapid advancements in digitization and Information and Communication Technology (ICT). Paper highlights that while keeping pace with technological changes, university librarians have to play various roles and must acquire managerial skills to perform these roles in a better way to live up to the expectations of clientele community. Paper describes that continuous professional Development by acquiring and adapting managerial skills is the hallmark for effectiveness of library services for gratifying diverse information requirements of patrons. The present paper is simply a discourse which revolves around the administration and management of university Libraries. The study also reflects library managers should imbibe in administering these institutions more efficiently with effective managerial skills. Often, Library administration is kept at howl when it comes to academics for the fact university libraries are passively involved with teaching, extension and research thereby most of the time contribution of libraries disregarded among university academia. In universities, administration and academia are correlated and go side by side. Library professionals since being part of university academia should in no case be sidelined or let aside. Keywords: Librarianship; Library Management; Library Administration; Human Resource Management; University Library. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF LIBRARY AND INFORMATION SCIENCE (IJLIS) ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print) ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online) Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), pp. 67-81 © IAEME: www.iaeme.com/IJLIS.asp Journal Impact Factor (2013): 5.1389 (Calculated by GISI), www.jifactor.com IJLIS © I A E M E
  2. 2. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 68 INTRODUCTION Technological change refers to technology-driven changes, with special reference to Information and communication technology (ICT) and its tools such as computers, internet, email, e-resources, RFID, OPAC, Consortium, archive, repository, OA etc. used in university libraries and information centers to provide better and instant services to user community with in the least possible time. The rapidly changing information environment and constant advances in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has influenced the way libraries operate these days. Due to these enormous changes clientele’s information needs are changing constantly and their expectations from libraries and library professionals are also increasing day by day. These changing needs and increasing expectations are forcing library and its professionals to restructure their role in order to cater the information needs of technologically aware user community who wants up to date information in their respective fields in real time. It has become necessary for university library professionals to understand and adopt these technological changes at the earliest for their survival in the technological environment and adapt managerial skill to administer libraries effectively. The article has been carried out with the vision to analyze the various managerial attributes and aspects of library profession, which in fact had been very much there since the origin of profession but the realization towards horning the skill was somewhat absent. One can easily see, how efficiently like any efficient manager a university librarian organizes knowledge and puts it to use as per the expectations of library clientele. In the present digital epoch, as we know services are entirely either based on technology or by managerial skills, and to have both has become unavoidable for university librarians. Profession of librarianship has become extremely challenging and to survive under the prevailing conditions and to make ones presence felt is exceedingly difficult. In this paper we have tried to work out and assess the managerial attributes of a library professional with special reference to University Libraries. REVIEW OF LITERATURE Information Technology (IT) has ushered in a variety of media that can help Library and Information Managers (LIMs) in efficient and effective acquisition, organization and dissemination of information. Electronic devices and e-resources have found increasing acceptance in Library and Information Centers (LICs); Multimedia has shown much potentials for LICs; and Information Networks have broken time and space barriers. At the same time, LIMs are deluged with advice as to how to use this media to acquire and organize learning resources and satisfy the complex and ever increasing information needs of their clientele. (Raina, 2006)1 . Information is a resource of enormous importance for economic, social and scientific development. The economies of most developing countries are agriculture - based and the free – flow of information can play a decisive role in the improvement of this sector. Access to timely and accurate information can help policy and decision makers to make correct decisions. On the contrary, decisions based on inaccurate, irrelevant, inadequate and obsolete information could be disastrous (Wasserman, 1991)2 Information is a critical resource in its operation and management of institution. Timely availability of relevant information is vital for effective performance of managerial functions such as planning, organizing, leading and controlling (Babu, 1997)3 . A well established and well designed information system to facilitate decision making in various development projects is critical to the success of any institution. To be successful any project requires efficient management of human and
  3. 3. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 69 material resources. This cannot be done unless accurate, timely and relevant information is available to decision makers (Waheed, 1990)4 . Michael Gorman (2000)5 defines librarian is a person who, after receiving a master's- level education at an accredited school and on-the-job training, carries out one or more of the tasks as Select the tangible object and electronic resources, acquire the selected materials and electronic resources by the purchase, subscription or by gift, organize and give access, preserve and conserve, assist library users, instruct library users, administer and manage the library and its personnel, services and programs”. It is very evident from the above quotes that how a library manager actually manages the library with the provision of quality and efficient library services. Peter Hill (2007)6 on clinical Librarians defines from 'Report of a National Review of NHS Library Services in England that "Clinical Librarians seek to provide quality assured information to health professionals at the point of need, to support clinical decision making". This definition clearly signifies the importance of librarian as an efficient library manager. Maryam Sarrafzadeh (2010)7 quoted that "Knowledge Management (KM) has given library a new lease of life. Library is not going to be closed but have come up with a new vision and quite quickly become very much appreciated and it is a leading player in the KM field". Pioneers of the management science like Peter Drucker, Paul Strassman, Ikujiro Nonaka and Peter Senge (2008)8 have been emphasizing over the management activities ever going in libraries having direct significance in information and knowledge management. Krackhardt and Hanson (1993)9 believe "effective library managers will develop skills in using each kind of network to collect and transfer organizational knowledge." Townley (2001)10 discussed on knowledge management for academic libraries and said Librarians can use knowledge management as a way to expand the library's role to areas such as administration or support services, where libraries have had little impact in the past. Librarians have been associated with the business of knowledge management as they have been always operating as intermediaries between haves and have-nots of knowledge but the concept is being perceived as re-branding of Librarianship. (Sarrafzadeh, 2010)11 . Singh and Pandita (2012)12 in their study entitled “Managerial Practices and Librarianship” discussed about various managerial attributes of library professionals and the roles they gel in while performing or rendering different kind of services to diverse users. OBJECTIVES OF MANAGERIAL PRACTICE To view and assess the use of Management Practices in Library and information Science Profession with the following objectives: i) To work with the managerial attributes and aspects of Library profession; ii) To apply the managerial techniques by working librarians and library professionals while carrying out routine activities and providing services to library clientele; iii) To assess the scope of Management in Library and Information science as whether tools and techniques of management science need to be taught to LIS students during their course work or some specialized course be introduced to do the needful;
  4. 4. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 70 iv) To draw a comparison between traditional and contemporary library services; v) To help overcome the difficulties faced by working university librarians in smooth functioning of libraries and information centers especially as administrative heads being university / statutory officers. DIVERSE INFORMATION REQUIREMENTS Today’s clientele want relevant and up to date information in their respective field’s right at their desktop/laptop/palmtop just by clicking button. This trend has made them more dependent on machines than human beings. Internet, WWW, search engines and online access take them straight towards the information they require for their academic purpose. They thought that they do not even need to visit libraries and library personnel. This has made libraries and their personnel to think what strategies they should adopt to exist in near future. The emergence of various technologies such as Multimedia, Digital libraries, Virtual libraries, E-resources, development of consortia, online journals, DOI, OA, ETD, archives, repositories, gateways, portals etc. have changed their information seeking behavior. Continuous advances in information technology have invaded the Libraries and Information Centers all over the world. With dynamic changes which are affecting the business scenario, the day is not far off when every individual would be well informed. The clientele of libraries in the 21st century will be on the increasing side. They may not like the conventional manual system of operations. (Johnson and Sivaraman, 1998)13 The technology related factors are mostly responsible for the constantly varying information requirements of the clientele. These constant changes require library professionals to be competent enough to handle technology effectively and efficiently and adapt managerial skills to provide them better services. ICT Explosion and revolution: Technological revolution has placed the libraries in a permanent transition period. It has changed the traditional ways of operating library. Technology has revolutionized the ways a library serves to its users. Even users are very familiar to these technologies as they are growing with it. They know how effectively these technologies can be utilized for their survival in their respective fields by getting timely information within least possible time. Libraries are fully appreciated by its users if they are getting better services using these technologies. Digital information environment: Information environment is constantly changing. Technological revolution has created an electronic information environment where easy transfer and exchange of information is possible through these technologies such as online subscription through e-mail, e-alerts, etc. Users can easily have their kind of information right on their desktops, laptops, mobiles, etc. This trend has made them more dependent on technology. Growth of internet and WWW: The immense explosive growth of internet and WWW has made users addicted to technology as they can easily browse any kind of information of their interest in any part of the world from anywhere over the network just by clicking mouse. This has completely changed the users’ information seeking behavior. Users want free subscription of full text on-line journals and e-books from their respected libraries so that they can easily access it with little efforts.
  5. 5. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 71 Easy accessibility of information: Users know that they can easily access information with great speed using technologies rather than manual ways of getting information from libraries. This attitude has also changed their information needs a lot. It not only saves their time but they also get relevant information in their field of interest with latest updates and easy accessibility. ROLE OF LIBRARIAN Librarians are challenged to provide greater information access and improved quality service to the user community while coping with the pace of technological change and ever- increasing and ever-changing needs and expectations of library users with in the budget limit. A library is a storehouse of knowledge in various forms such as books, journals, etc. in print and electronic format. The role of librarian is to disseminate knowledge in required format to its users at the earliest. A librarian should be friendly and he should lay down emphasis on innovation and should have tight control over all the activities of library while coordinating them in an efficient and effective manner. According to Cooke (2011)14 , the most productive and effective way for libraries to keep up with these changes brought about by the adoption of ICT and digitization in library services is to seek out professional development opportunities. Continuing professional development, according to Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland (2013)15 , involves an ongoing cyclical process of continuous quality improvement which allows professionals to learn and develop to meet their own personal and professional needs and needs of their patrons. In recent years the role of librarian has increased from traditional gatekeepers of knowledge/information to that of manger, researcher, webrarian, marketing expert and technocrat due to following challenges: Growing size and complexity of information, need for optimum utilization of library resources, rapid advancements in technology, emergence of internet and WWW, changing information seeking behaviors of users, constantly increasing expectations of users, emergence of innovative managerial skills, management theories, etc. Raina(2006)16 in his paper ‘Continuing Professional Development Programmes (CPDPs) for Professionals in the Area of information Technology: an Approach at IIML’ stresses that to equip Library and Information Managers with adequate know-how, they should undergo the three day program designed in the area of “IT Applications” at Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow (IIML). The programme was largely designed around the following themes: State-of-the art IT applications in LIS; Strategic implementation of IT in LICs through a case study; Understand Networking and Internet Environment; Digital Library Developments Initiatives; Developing E-resources and Consortia initiative’s; Web and the world of Librarianship; Copyright , Human Resource, Policy Consideration and Management issues, in the context of IT Applications in LICs. After going through this course, a librarian can improve his managerial skill and ICT skill a lot. He must join this programme for his professional development. A Librarian has to keep users on top priority while planning and making any changes in the library. He has to perform various roles to foster the constantly changing and increasing demands of the library users. These roles are:
  6. 6. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 72 Figure 1: Competency of University Librarian LIBRARIAN AS A MANAGER Librarian, who is considered as the manager of the library has to manage all the activities of the library by planning, organizing, coordinating, commanding and controlling them in a proper and systematic way to provide user oriented services. As a manager, he has to manage basically following M’s in a library to facilitate user oriented services. These M’s are: Figure 2: Five M's managed by university librarian MEN, here refers to library personnel, MACHINE refers to technology deployed in library such as fax machine, Xerox machine, computers, printers, RFID technology etc., MATERIAL refers to all book and non-book material, METHODS refers to various management theories and principles such as scientific theory, classical theory, management principles laid down by Henri Fayol etc. and MONEY refers to various funds library needs to handle various operations in the library.
  7. 7. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 73 NEED AND PURPOSE OF MANAGERIAL PRACTICE Time and again it is being seen that library professionals are not being give the place among academia which they deserve. It is always important to let contemporaries of other sciences to have a clear understanding about the Library and Information Science along with those of working librarian, and to do the needful responsibility always lies with working librarians and teachers of library and information science. We can see, Library science as a science has not grown manifold or the way it should have. Despite tireless efforts put in by working professionals from time to time we have not been able to carve out a distinct place for ourselves neither in society in general and peers of other sciences in particular. Definitely LIS as on date has still to go a long way in accomplishing new heights and goals and technology to this effect has come to us handy. It's our turn to make technology a great tool to scale new heights. We need to harness and groom the upcoming students so as to prepare them as good substitute of technological and management people. To let profession scale new heights, need is to make presence of library and information professionals felt in society. It is not that librarians are not doing good job, in fact they are doing the job at such level where society has not reached as yet and need is to keep it going at the same pace and to let everybody know this fact that how this science is distinct and imperative for social setup. Since the study is a general overview of the professional competencies among working librarians which for different reasons never get recognized especially by the administrators of institutions or organizations. This way we believe some where this may help a great deal in overcoming the difficulties faced by library professionals to smoothen functioning of libraries. LIBRARIANSHIP AND MANAGEMENT A good number of countries have already recognized this course as Library and Information Management, perhaps for reasons, every activity involved with the library profession is managerial in nature, so by no means it won't be inappropriate if we work on changing the nomenclature of the subject to Library and Information Management. Librarian as a collective administrative head is responsible for conducting and managing the affairs of an institutional library. Librarian remains always busy in seeking out new ways and means to attain short and long term objectives of the organization in general and library in particular. Librarians as able managers have already helped in letting libraries to reach a stage of self sustenance. Till recent past we used to learn that libraries are non-profit making institutions, but of the late we can say that libraries have reached to the stage of self-sustenance. A librarian as on date is enough capable to run a library as a self sustaining unit and the day will not be far when we can see libraries as profit making institutions and this all will be possible only with the help of competent library management team. Librarians are expected to do lot many things, most of the time they are assigned responsibility with out authority, while as everybody knows that responsibility without authority is meaningless. To fix responsibility with a person without giving one authority of choosing the course of action to execute things is futile and pointless. Management is about delegation of authority at each individual level of hierarchy so that results can be achieved in desired manner.
  8. 8. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 74 LIBRARIAN'S COMPETENCY Specific duties of a librarian vary considerably depending on the collection size, services and type of library. Olivia Crosby (2000)17 described librarians as "Information experts in the information age". Librarian as a Library Manager should spearhead and be responsible in the overall implementation of the knowledge initiatives and its Preservation in Public, School, Academic, Archives, Special Libraries. Raja Abdullah Yaacob, Adnan Jamaluddin, Kamaruzaman Jusoff maintain that Role of a librarian in Identification of Knowledge involves discovery of existing knowledge; acquisition of knowledge; creation of new knowledge; storage and organization of knowledge and sharing of knowledge. Librarian as a knowledge manager has to play role in championing, educating users, educating management team, measuring impacts of KM, mapping existing knowledge, defragmenting scattered knowledge and creating technology channels. In addition, a librarian has to embark on the tasks of, supporting ICT and eliminating knowledge flow gaps, creating knowledge sharing culture, identifying knowledge gaps, supporting group or team work, and diffusing best practices, Yaacob (2010)18 . Davenport (1998)19 in the same vain categorized KM into four broad types of perspectives, namely to create knowledge repositories, improve knowledge access and transfer, enhance the knowledge environment and manage knowledge as an asset and to recognize the value of knowledge to an organization. MANAGERIAL SKILLS OF A LIBRARIAN Activities which a University librarian should performs as an efficient library manger are briefly outlined below: A Thinker: Librarian as a thinker has to be prognostic in his outlook, with adequate managerial attributes librarian has to always look beyond horizon so as to take very good care of the aspirations and needs of library clientele. He has to be in position to understand and extend his thinking ability beyond the present library situation for better services in future. As a thinker he is required to give due consideration to what his clientele think of. He has to be creative and problem solving. A Strategist: Librarian as a strategist remains always busy in seeking out new ways and means to provide improved quality services to its clientele, especially when taken the case of present day service oriented world, where nobody can afford to overlook even a minutest issue. As a strategist, librarian always looks for adding latest sources of information to its collection, seeks partnerships, seeks sponsors, seeks funding agencies and many more only with one motive to provide improvised services. An Architect: One has got every reason to lavish praise over seeing a beautiful library edifice but there is no need to get surprised if one comes to know that the same edifice has been designed by a working librarian. It is always the architectural qualities of a librarian, what drags a professional architect to him for his expert opinion/advice, without which It is never possible to have a library building with all prerequisites. Every time an architect is assigned of job to design a library, the first thing an architect does is, he pays a visit to librarian, as knows without consulting a librarian it is not possible to build a library which will suffice all library activities and services. It is librarian who always projects the growth for next 50 to 60 years along with other requisites needed in smooth functioning of a library
  9. 9. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 75 over the period of time. As far as the outer structure of library is considered architect has a good say, but when taken the case of internal adjustments, like creations of sections, spaces, furniture and fixtures everything rests with the librarian as such he is the real architect of the library building. A Coordinator: A librarian is always aimed to develop coordination among different sections of the library so that activities and services of library may receive a boost. The hierarchal structure, both vertical and horizontal comprising of subordinates and super- ordinates at each step, is through whom librarian gets job done. It is very important to see to it as whether all the different constituents of a system are working in coordination with each other and in case any of the links among different units of a system is missing the system is deemed to collapse. It is always a librarian who like a good manager has to ensure coordination of among all units of library system. Growth and development of a profession directly depends on how far the people engaged with profession are contributing towards it. Contribution of a professional in profession goes a long way in carrying forward and meeting the aspirations of both seeker of information and its provider. The more we contribute to growth of a profession the more we are contributing to growth of society. A Library professional also acts as a contributor to his profession by working out various ways and means to enhance the professional competence. Whether we talk of introducing technology into profession, innovating new methods of providing generalized and specialized services to its clientele. Towards professional development a working librarian keeps always contributing one or the other way and does not act as watchdog, the untrue notion which people often have, over the activities and services provided by his colleagues. A Builder: University Librarian as a builder can be seen at each stage of the growth and development of each individual university library. Indeed library profession is rolling and library professionals keep on shifting from organization to another every now and then, futile to say for the want of better opportunities, service conditions which comes their way, still we can find each new incumbent tries his level best to contribute to build the university library the way they can. It won't be out of context to mention that each professional puts some building blocks his way to structure, as such acts as a true builder. A Sensor: Keeping in view the changing global order, where we can see that policies, programmes, techniques and skills of one country can be used effectively in another country. It becomes vital for a library professional to keep track of all the latest developments of profession at global front, and to make a good use of such changes, a librarian must be good at gathering and shifting information, interpreting the implications and predicting a range of feasible outcomes. A Scanner: When taken the case of special libraries we can say that a librarian acts as a scanner, he every time keeps a constant eye on the developments of their specialized subject or the project with which one is associated. A librarian as a specialist makes it sure to scan for specialized information worldwide. A librarian can serve as a scanner with the perspective to expertise and detect trends to move knowledge across boundaries. A librarian can transform piecemeal information into strategic intelligence. A Leader: Job of a librarian as leader is not that easy what it may seem by far. A library as an individual institution like any other institutions do remains spread both vertically and
  10. 10. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 76 horizontally and librarian as a leader has to ensure that each section and unit of library at each level of hierarchy is working as per desired manner. A modern day library believes in hierarchal structure of functioning and we can see most of the libraries are having and working under Top, Middle, Lower and Operational levels of management. Qualities of a good leader are not only that he will be able to make people work but also has to develop and involve a sense of belongingness among workers, encourage them, taking care of their professional and personal commitments, develop “we” feeling with team spirit. Job of a librarian invites all these and many more things. An Innovator: A Library professional needs to be innovative inherently keeping in view the number of problems one can face during routine library services. Innovation always comes handy in overcoming these difficulties. Apart from this innovation is also named as key to success and to be a successful library professional one has to develop the trait of being more and more innovative. It is the innovation of a person over which every other managerial attribute depends. This is one of the most important component which helps in transforming a simple professional into a successful master. A Human Resource Manager: Preparing incumbents to replace outgoing professionals is equally important. It is very difficult to have exact substitute of a person but still efforts should be made to groom incumbent in such a way that with the passage of time s/he may fit to the shoes of replaced one. In most of the organizations it has been observed that younger professionals do not prepare their replacements, mostly because they fear this may decrease their importance in organization. Apprehensions of this sort if drawn among some people in some organizations may perhaps be right but fact also remains that it is not the solution of the problem, sooner or later one has to do it and doing the same at an appropriate stage is more important. Librarians do have to ensure that their subordinates be groomed to become their good replacements. Training and education among professionals should be made a routine affair and opportunities and exposure to execute work of higher order be provided to subordinates from time to time. A Technocrat: A librarian as a technocrat is a technical expert, especially one in a management or administrative position. He is a member of a highly skilled elite group. He must possess special knowledge or ability to perform skillfully. (Srinath, 2005)20 . Librarian as a technocrat can make plans for the betterment of the library and its users with the support of library staff. A librarian with good leadership and administrative skills can get better support from the staff. A Webrarian: A librarian as a webrarian can be defined as “a person who is an expert at not only finding information on the World Wide Web, but also at prioritizing, organizing, and cataloguing that information”. (http://www.wordspy.com/words/Webrarian.asp). He can also be termed as cybrarian. He should have sound knowledge of accessing web resources and various web resources available in different fields as today’s users want maximum information just by sitting at their desktop. He can subscribe consortia based e-resources for the benefit of the users so that they can easily access full text articles in their respective fields. As a webrarian, he must keep the library websites up to date. For this purpose he must have the knowledge of creating and uploading the web pages which needs thorough understanding of HTML, XTML, TIFF, etc.
  11. 11. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 77 A Guide: A librarian can help library users in locating information with in the least possible time by guiding them how to exploit resources of the library through the user education programme at regular intervals. He can take them straight way to the information they required using CAS/SDI services. Librarian should organize training programs related to formulating the query, identifying the important concepts, keywords, Boolean searches, OA portals, subject gateways, consortium, online-access, etc. A Researcher: Librarian can act as a researcher by constantly involving himself in learning process. It helps him to cop up with all the changes or developments taken place in the field of library profession. It is essential not only for his professional development but also to keep him abreast of latest information in his area. A Marketing expert: A librarian should establish a right link between users and resources available in the library. For this users are required to be fully aware of the library services and products. To make users aware of the services and products librarian should possess the quality of salesman who encourages maximum utilization of resources by marketing the wide range of information available in various formats in the library. Marketing not only makes users aware of what library has to offer them but also attracts non-users to the library. This way he is capable of meeting the complex information requirement of the users to a great extent as well as maximize utilization of library services and products. SKILLS OF LIBRARIAN To perform the above said major roles a librarian must possess following skills: Professional skikll: Professional skill consists of professional degrees in the field of Library and Information Science. Some universities or institutes deploy incharge librarian having degrees in other fields instead of appointing fully paid librarian. This trend should be stopped as only Library and Information Science professionals can run libraries better in real sense. A librarian must acquire these professional degrees to have a thorough knowledge of routine work of library. He must also have sound knowledge of management theories and principles to perform managerial functions. ICT skill: The librarian must be techno-savvy so that he can handle ICT tools in order to provide information access to the users well in time. It requires librarian to have the ability in using the equipment, techniques, and procedures to perform specific tasks such as online access of information using WWW, OPAC, e-mail etc. He should also be competent enough to create library databases according to users’ requirements and library management software according to his library environment. This requires librarian to acquire specialized knowledge regarding Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and technical know-how of internet and WWW. It is essential to meet the daily demands of today’s user community quickly using these techniques. Librarian must learn to access, analyze, evaluate and disseminate information using technologies to meet the changing needs of the user community. Human Relation skill: It is essential for librarian to maintain good human relation with user and other staff of the library to win their support, favors and co-operation to run library effectively and efficiently. This not only helps him to understand the feelings of the library
  12. 12. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 78 users and staff but also the needs of the library users and problems faces by the staff while performing their duties. Managerial skill: This refers to the ability to visualize the library as a whole. It requires imagination, broad knowledge and the mental capacity to conceive ideas to face any challenge that come across. PODSCORB primarily managerial functions are essentially prerequisite for a university librarian to be competent. Personal skill: Beside all above skill a librarian must have some personal skill to lead other library personnel successfully and win library users’ confidence. He must be a good leader, self confident and intelligent to put examples for others. He must be of open mind and adaptive to new ideas for the well being of library and its users. He should have a good foresight to meet challenges. He should have the ability to handle difficult situations and must be a constant vigilant to know what is happening around him. SUGGESTIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS Role of Libraries and librarians have changed manifold, librarians are being looked as library mangers, who are actively involved in Information and Knowledge management activity. This in turn has doubled the responsibility of library professionals not only by way of meeting the expectations of the information seekers but do have to learn nitty-gritty of managerial activity and need to update, by undergoing management training courses. Apart from carrying out routine activities, a modern day library professional needs to get engaged actively into research activities related to growth and development of profession. A working librarian is always in better position to assess the changed needs and requirements of profession for its sustenance and survival. Working professionals are constant and continuous researchers as they every time keep on trying new things and practices just to facilitate and enhance services to clientele in better and broader way. The Conference Board study find out (Lawler & Boudreau, 2012)21 that the priorities of the Human Relation profession have not changed very much over decades (the definition and achievement of the “strategic partner” role remains elusive). Human Relation has made progress in transactional areas and in improving Human Relation efficiency, but both studies suggest that business unit leaders outside the Human Relation profession (such as librarianship) view Human Relation as relatively lagging in performance on more strategic roles (Boudreau & Lawler, 2014)22 . Similarly, the 2013 study of critical human capital issues by i4cp found that six of the top 10 issues were the same over the past four years. They concluded that since 1986 “year to year comparisons of the study show that the urgency of these issues is growing but the ability of HR organizations to effectively deal with them has stalled or deteriorated” (DiRomualdo, 2013)23 . It would be more appropriate to introduce a full-fledged management paper in the syllabi of library and information students both at Bachelors and Masters level. Schools offering two years integrated Masters Degree in LIS can have or introduce desired numbers of choice based credit courses of management in Library and information science. In this ever and fast changing service oriented world library and information professionals are bound to follow the suit. We should remember that it is not the server who changes the taste of users but it is always the users who not just expects better services but also demands; such is the kind of yearning among the modern day library clientele. Need is, library and information professionals should every time be ready to combat any type of information calamity or eventuality.
  13. 13. International Journal of Library and Information Science (IJLIS), ISSN: 2277 – 3533 (Print), ISSN: 2277 – 3584 (Online), Volume 3, Issue 1, January - June (2014), © IAEME 79 CONCLUSION The revolution in ICT and its tools has brought in a sea change the way information is stored, the way users seeks information and access it and the way a librarian perform his role. In the present scenario Librarians needs to restructure their role by playing the role of an efficient manager, a perfect guide, researcher and teacher and a curious technocrat and a marketing expert. He needs to possess various technical, conceptual and managerial skills in order to meet the information needs of user in an efficient and effective way. He must remain in constant touch with all the latest developments in technologies in the context of Library and Information Science field. If he has to make users feel his presence in acquiring information relevant to them, he must learn to access, analyze, evaluate and disseminate information using technologies to the right user at the right time and right place with in the least possible time. Librarian needs to transform its role from traditional custodians of information to creator of information in a planned and systematic way and disseminate it through proper channels among user community to meet their constantly changing information needs. Library professionals are the managers in their own way, they had been managing university libraries and providing efficient library services to clientele since ages but never ever got rated as good managers. Till recent past library professional were unaware of their managerial trait and skill which they inherently develop and attain through the period of time in their profession. University Librarians till date had been covert and salient mangers but of the late they have realized of this attribute in them as such have started making it their main weapon of handling operations and services in their expected field. With regard to scope of management science in the field of library and information science it becomes very much evident from the above discussion that management as on date may not have gained that much ground but definitely the pace with which tools of management especially the human relations are being applied in carrying out activities and delivering services in libraries is quite note worthy. Students of library and information science need to be trained with managerial skills during their course of study as this will pave a better future to them with high moral prospects. Need is to introduce management Science as a full-fledged subject in library science with desired number of credits. Apart from this skill horning workshops be organized from time to time by various library association in and outside India. All these and many more innovative things can be done to enhance competence and performance of library professionals as managers of library in present digital epoch. While drawing comparison between traditional and contemporary library services we may not find that significant difference except, handling of information with the help of technology what we call Information Technology (IT) covering digital and electronic sources. Besides in modern day library activities and services we are well aware of managerial practices applied in library profession while as same was also in place in conventional libraries but people had not assessed the presence of managerial tools and techniques in their routine activities. With the application of tools like ICT and Management in routine library activities library professionals have grown as able administrators, as such we can see university librarians today are being assigned with all type of tasks and are actively involved in decision making process of institutions and organizations. Days are gone when library professionals were assigned responsibility without authority which used to be insignificant. Now-a-days we can see librarians are given assignments with complete authority in executing things the way they deem appropriate.
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