MANAGEMENT OF LIBRARY AND ARCHIVE IN DIGITAL ERA: New Skills for Information Professionals Being a paper presented at RFK-Network Quarterly Training of RIMA (Records & Information Management Awareness) Foundation -Promoting the awareness for proper management and security of records and information... By Ayodele Alonge Librarian, KPMG Professional Services, Victoria Island, Lagos
Introduction The work of librarians, archivists, and records managers is changing at a fundamental level. The very materials with which these professions work are undergoing a drastic transformation.
Information professionals have handled a combination of physical documents composed of text formed with ink on paper, photographs made of silver or dye on papers and plastics, or other familiar formats. Machine-readable Materials: audio recordings (records, wire recordings, tapes, and compact discs) moving images (film, videotape, and DVDs),
Peripheral• these formats were a small portion of the collections and often considered a specialty. Many information professionals put these odd materials in a separate box at the end of the collection, treating them as peripheral to the “real” records.• The approach of concentrating on traditional formats and isolating the non-textual ones as supplementary is no longer valid.
The Genesis Digital Era . The development of ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer) in the 1940s was a influential moment. The introduction of the personal computer in the 1980s made computing accessible to many people. The web, made public in 1991, has made digital information apparently ubiquitous (everywhere)
For any Information professional to stand out, he must be well equipped with new skills: Information Communication Technology (ICT) related skills.
MANAGING ELECTRONIC RECORDS The Internet, especially the web, and the diminishing costs of technology has made it possible to digitize collections of “born-analog” materials. “BORN-DIGITAL Records professionals are now working with “born-digital” materials, records and publications that may never be printed or cannot be represented in print. ICT: as technology has become more all-encompassing, so have the opportunities to continue improving how information professionals work.
Function of Information Professionalsin Non Digital and Digital Era What information professionals do in the digital era remains the same. They must still work with record creators and publishers to build the collection; manage the organization of the materials, their preparation for use, and their preservation; and they must work with the public and other users to provide access to the collections. None of that changes in the digital era.
However, How information professionals do their jobs changes in digital era. Many techniques used for paper records will not apply to digital works. Boxes make sense for transferring paper records organized in folders, but file transfer programs are more appropriate for digital records. Paper records can be stored on shelves in a room of stacks, but Digital files will be kept on servers. Face-to-face reference service in secure reading rooms may change to online assistance for patrons accessing collections from around the world. Every activity in the physical world has a parallel in the virtual environment.
CHALLENGES Despite the fact that most information professionals now recognize the importance f working with digital materials, many are unsure what to do; how to it and lack required skills to do it. The absence of rigorous standards and best practices for electronic records reflects the diverse missions of library and archival organizations and the use of proprietary technologies by most information creators.
Not knowing what they need to know, and The knowledge and skill sets required by information professionals depend a great deal upon the availability of other technical expertise in the organization and willingness to collaborate across professions on their work. Do information professionals need to be able to write programs, design databases, or administer networks? Do they need to know HTML or XML, or any of a host of related acronyms (CSS, XSLT, and DTD to name a few)?
Skills Required of InformationProfessionals in ElectronicEnvironment Closer look at the existing skills of Information professionals reveals that for facing the challenges of today and tomorrow, they not only need to acquire wider range of skills but also need to keep themselves up-to-date.
In this electronic/digital age for Information professionals: Librarians, Archivist, Record managers to excel and remain relevant, they must have Generic Skills; Managerial Skills Professional Skills
Generic skills Communication skill Flexibility Adaptability Assertiveness Self-confidence Creativity Innovation Analytical skills Problem solving
…Generic skills Decision making Service attitude Customer relationship Improving one’s learning and experience Presentation skills Stress management Time management Interpersonal Group skills Working with difficult People
Managerial skills Local and global thinking Planning and organizational skills Finance management skills Fund raising Skillful use of financial resources Accounting and auditing skills Managing change Team building
…Managerial skills Decision making Leadership Negotiation skills Consumer management skills User need analysis Information seekingBehavior analysis Project management People management Stress management Time management Resource management
Professional skills Information technology skills Hardware/ software and networking Skills MS-Office suite Presentation software’s e.g. power point etc. Library automation Database creation Internet e.g. E- Mail management, Intricacies of internet search tools Intranet skill Scanning techniques Networking skills On-line searchengines On-line databases search Desktop publishing Content development
Professional skills Digitization Web based services Virtual learning Information literacy Technical professional skills Information resource management E- serial management Metadata standards e.g. Dublin core, MARC, TEI2, XML etc. Standards e.g. Z39.504 System development Knowledge management5 Traditional skills
Conclusion It has become imperative to have generic skills in addition to acquisition of traditional and ICT competence, which must be continuously updated so as to meet the need of changing service Managing and working, both in a modern library and information centers has become a highly specialized job, which requires proactive attitude towards change and continuous reinvention of the competence among professionals
Profile of Ayodele John ALONGE Ayo Alonge hails from Orokere-Amuro in Mopamuro LGA, Kogi State, Nigeria. He holds a Bachelor Degree in Library Archive and Information Studies (B.LIS) and Masters in Publishing and Copyright Studies (MPCS) from the Department of Library Archive and Information Studies, University of Ibadan. He is a Doctoral student in the University of Ibadan; working on Social media and Media Literacy. He is a member of Nigerian Library Association (NLA); Public Relation Officer (PRO) of Lagos state chapter; and an Associate of Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP), United Kingdom. His research interests are: Information and Media Literacy (IML), Electronic Publishing, Open Access, Social- networking Librarianship.
He is the winner of Dr. James O. Daniel Award for the most Innovative Library–Based. ICT Project of the Year 2009 for his explore on application Social Networking in Librarianship. He teaches “Information Science” and “Book Publishing” on part-time in Library School, University of Ibadan. He is a co-moderator of Nigerian Library Association online Forum since 2009: NLA online Forum http://groups.yahoo.com/group/nla-online- forum/ (1,275 members) He works as a Librarian with KPMG Professional Services, Nigerian (member firm of KPMG International) since 2008. He lives in Lagos with his wife and two children CONTACT: Tel: 234-8023594427 , BB Pin: 26E59F80 Twitter: @optimisticBooks|| Facebook: Ayo Alonge email@example.com http://optimisticinfo.blogspot.com/ http://www.linkedin.com/in/ayoalonge http://ibadan.academia.edu/AyodeleAlonge