Building a Better Library Experience: Redefining Access Services
Rodriguez, Juan Carlos
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In 2011, the University Libraries at Grand Valley State University began a year-long process of reviewing and analyzing all workflows performed by members of the Technology and Information Services (TIS) Division. The TIS Division consisted of the following three departments: (1) Access Services, (2) Technical Services & Electronic Resource Management and (3) Systems and Technology. The purpose and goal of this analysis was for the staff to develop a better understanding and appreciation of all processes performed across the division, identify opportunities for increasing efficiencies, identify opportunities for change and implement many of these opportunities identified. During this same time, a library-wide initiative had begun to emphasize the importance and value in providing great service to our library users. The program will discuss the inclusive process used to transform the Access Services Department into one that is based on collaboration, innovation and efficiencies and to develop a library environment that is user-centered, proactive and responsive to user needs. We will also discuss the decision making process and the new roles and responsibilities of the Access Service Staff that were a result of the transformation of the Access Services Department from four separate and traditional units (i.e. Circulation, Course Reserves, Interlibrary Loan and Collection/Stacks Maintenance) into two new units: Access & Delivery Services and User Experience. Finally, we will introduce some of the service blueprinting concepts used by members of the User Experience Unit to begin to identify areas for change that will improve the user experience. Service blueprinting is a transformative “process modeling” approach that creates a visual depiction of a service and places the user at the center of improvement and considers his or her experience to be the foundation for analyzing and making enhancements to services.