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  1. 1. Informed Desk Staffing with Quantified Reference Statistics Using Electronic Data Collection to Re-Envision Reference Services at the USF Tampa Libraries ALA 2011 Annual Conference Presentation RUSA MARS Top Trends June 25, 2011
  2. 2. Lily Todorinova , University of South Florida Andy Huse , University of South Florida Barbara Lewis , University of South Florida Matt Torrence , University of South Florida
  3. 3. University of South Florida Campuses : Tampa, St. Petersburg, Sarasota, Lakeland Student Population: (Tampa): approx. 40,000 Profile: Urban, Undergraduate, High Research Activity
  4. 4. The Libraries
  5. 5. Re-Envisioning Public Services <ul><ul><li>Context for the project: 2010, Inter-departmental </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>History of the Learning Commons </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Assessment <ul><ul><li>Tally sheets and/or &quot;clickers&quot; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sample days throughout the semester </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Experimentation & anecdotal information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Aeon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Desktracker </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Recommendations <ul><ul><li>Single-staffing librarians with GAs at peak times only </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Instituting a referral system between GAs (or paraprofessionals) and librarians, when desk is single-staffed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Instituting better referral between other departments and units (Special & Digital Collections, as well as Circulation, the Writing Center, and Tutoring and Learning) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eliminating night hours and reducing weekends </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increasing reliance on virtual reference </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Virtual Reference: The Solution <ul><ul><li>Started with email in 1999 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Moved to, from, and back to collaborative services </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>TBLC Statewide </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Chat and text services </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Supplement, or replacement? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The future...? </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Management Decision-making <ul><ul><li>Decision-making literature </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Structured interviews </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Past, present, & future data collections </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What? </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How? </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Why? </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Decision-making process </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What types of decisions? </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How was it done? </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How do you want to do it? </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What type of data do you need? </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Results in Special Collections <ul><ul><li>The old backup desk model (staff/students with faculty backup) had problems: two scheduled for each hour, duplication, no benefit to patrons. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Aeon and Desk Tracker provide important data: Similar ratio (9:1) of basic informational questions to actual reference queries.  Majority of patrons required &quot;retrievals,&quot; not &quot;consultations.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New desk model, relatively small cadre of two staff and two students.  Advantages: Frees faculty for other duties, a stable lineup of well-trained desk staff, eases schedule creation. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Statistics determined cuts in hours.  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Small department, fast implementation. </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Results in Academic Services <ul><ul><li>Changes in daily scheduling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Down to one librarian/GA for slower times </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Modifications to evening coverage (TBLC chat help) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>On-call hours </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Changes to weekend scheduling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Librarian shift moved to Sunday evenings (4-8pm) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Email and chat coverage on Saturdays </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased focus on consultations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Workshops </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Research Rescue </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Individual sessions </li></ul></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Conclusions and the Future <ul><ul><li>Knowledge Tracker </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Systematized referral process </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cross-informational training between service points </li></ul></ul>