We are happy to announce that we have finished conducting the research needed for this project and will be publishing the report shortly. In the meantime, we wanted to present the two emerging job profiles we developed based on the data we gathered over the past 10 months:
- Community Engagement and Communication Officer
- Digital Transformation Facilitator
As a disclaimer, we would like to state that role profiles are not job profiles and an employee in an organisation can have different roles even if the employee holds a different job title.
Community Engagement and Communication Officer
Our research showed that engaging with the community and knowing how to communicate with users and colleagues alike were crucial components to modern librarianship. Indeed, the survey and the in-depth interviews all confirmed that this was a skill needed for all staff but especially those facing the public. As we collated the research from all five of our partner countries, we felt that community engagement and communication went hand-in-hand. This was how our first profile, the Community Engagement and Communication Officer was born. It brings together analysing the needs of a community and ensuring there is communication and collaboration around this internally and relevant activities and services are developed in response to this. This profile is not a digital-only profile, but we felt that they should be equipped with the skills needed to navigate a digital environment and use it to their advantage when responding to community needs.
Digital Transformation Facilitator
The second profile targets the digital transformation and its impact on the library sector much more explicitly. This job profile focuses on the digitization efforts that may be part of a library’s activities as well as the overall transition into the digital era for the library sector. Thus, this is a technical profile aiming to support colleagues who may be struggling with new digital processes and tools as well as helping with the library’s digital activities.
Our research showed that a technical profile was needed in most libraries to handle more complex technological issues. However, we also felt that this profile should provide an opportunity for all library professionals to acquire new digital skills linked to the digital processes their library uses. As some interviews noted, some librarians were more willing to learn about library systems as they felt it was closely linked to their jobs but were reticent to engage with newer digital technologies. The digital transformation facilitator must be ready to face an environment where colleagues may challenge or fear the use of new technology and guide them through this.
As we move into the next phases of the Biblio project – curricula and MOOC development – these job profiles will inform the modules that the Biblio project will pilot in 2021.
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