Taming the Library Workflow Chaos

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Created for an Information Management course assignment. The presentation addresses issues in a fictitious law firm and law library and is presented as a client proposal for implementation of new workflow technology.

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Taming the Library Workflow Chaos

  1. 1. Smith & Jones LLP - Taming the Library Workflow Chaos by Connie Crosby PLC8002-09W2 course assignment for Ivan Welsh March 6, 2009
  2. 2. The fine print: The following presentation was created for the course “Overview of ECM Technologies” in the Information Management program at the Professional Learning Centre, Faculty of Information, University of Toronto. The law firm Smith & Jones LLP and the scenario presented are fictitious. Any similarities to an existing law firm or law firm library are purely coincidental and unintended.
  3. 3. [The Problem]
  4. 4. Lawyers are frustrated
  5. 5. Smith & Jones’ clients call with: increasing legal needs shorter deadlines declining budgets
  6. 6. S&J Lawyers need answers fast!
  7. 7. The Library is too slow
  8. 8. Library staff are overwhelmed
  9. 9. What is the problem??
  10. 10. What everyone is saying... disorganized Library unrealistic Lawyers staff over-demanding overworked Library Lawyers staff the Lawyers don’t inefficient Library understand the process understaffed Library
  11. 11. What everyone is saying... disorganized Library unrealistic Lawyers staff over-demanding overworked Library Lawyers staff the Lawyers don’t inefficient Library understand the process understaffed Library Who is right??
  12. 12. [The reality]
  13. 13. Since 2004 - S&J Client Work Partner hours Associate hours
  14. 14. Since 2004 - Library Research Requests Partner requests Associate & Student requests
  15. 15. Since 2004 - Incoming Library Mail Pieces of mail (received & processed)
  16. 16. Perhaps this is a...
  17. 17. Workflow Issue!
  18. 18. [What is Workflow?]
  19. 19. Workflow model of interaction between various operations shows tasks in sequence achieves a desired outcome
  20. 20. Workflow Tech Will Resolve Problems Library processes developed years ago many changes processes updated in an ad hoc way missing visibility
  21. 21. evaluate the processes
  22. 22. improve efficiency
  23. 23. Go from this....
  24. 24. Go from this.... chaos!!
  25. 25. ...to this!
  26. 26. Organized & efficient! ...to this!
  27. 27. S&J Library Workflow Update move away from ad-hoc procedures define the steps better standardize procedures reduce inefficiency make transparent to S&J Lawyers
  28. 28. Automating Workflow
  29. 29. Major Features workflow is standardized processing materials can be tracked some tasks can be done simultaneously workload between Library staff balanced flexibility allows for exceptions as needed
  30. 30. Benefits of Automated Workflow standardized procedures must be followed some manual tasks can be automated impact of employee absences reduced employee performance can be measured work and status are visible to S&J Lawyers
  31. 31. Considerations keeping track of every task = more admin work integration with existing systems may be tricky cost
  32. 32. [In summary]
  33. 33. Library staff become more efficient
  34. 34. Lawyers see materials in process
  35. 35. and get answers faster!
  36. 36. S&J clients are impressed
  37. 37. Faster & cheaper. Impressive. S&J clients are impressed
  38. 38. [The bottom line]
  39. 39. The bottom line S&J Operations: S&J Clients: Library work done happier more efficiently bring more work new Library staff not give more referrals needed Lawyers can see what is happening
  40. 40. The bottom line S&J Operations: S&J Clients: Library work done happier more efficiently bring more work new Library staff not give more referrals needed Happy Lawyers can see Lawyers! what is happening
  41. 41. The bottom line S&J Operations: S&J Clients: Library work done happier more efficiently bring more work new Library staff not give more referrals needed Happy Lawyers can see Lawyers! woo hoo! what is happening
  42. 42. Photo credits image of businessman from stock.xchng http://www.sxc.hu/ - used under stock.xchng standard licensing “Feelin’ Professional 2” by lemon_drop http://www.sxc.hu/photo/525103 - used under stock.xchng standard licensing “Help!” by Arthur Legardo http://www.flickr.com/photos/arthurlegardo/1817247284/ - used under Creative Commons licensing “workflow” by theps.net http://www.flickr.com/photos/saulalbert/2700974019/ - used under Creative Commons licensing “concept” by theps.net http://www.flickr.com/photos/saulalbert/2700974025 - used under Creative Commons licensing “telesales 1” by scholastic http://www.sxc.hu/photo/237476 - used under stock.xchng standard licensing “.|Unique|.” by clix http://www.sxc.hu/photo/923718 - used under stock.xchng standard licensing “Fastest Writer on the World” by Kriss Szkurlatowski http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1020206 used under stock.xchng standard licensing & extra conditions “Feelin’ Professional 1” by lemon_drop http://www.sxc.hu/photo/525102 - used under stock.xchng standard licensing
  43. 43. Thank you! Connie Crosby Crosby Group Consulting http://crosbygroup.ca conniecrosby@gmail.com 416-919-6719

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