Executive summary

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					  Tomorrow’s Library


Briefing paper prepared for The Ministerial Advisory
           Committee on Public Libraries
                   12 April 2012




                                                       1
Executive summary
This paper has been prepared as supporting material for the YPRL’s presentation to the Ministerial
Advisory Committee on Public Libraries (MAC) on 12 April 2012. The paper provides an overview of
key challenges and opportunities for YPRL as it aspires to meet the challenges of a rapidly growing
and diverse region.

YPRL’s mission is to inform, educate, inspire and connect. In doing so we aim to support the social,
economic and cultural development of the communities we serve.

We have presented a brief discussion on the goals and aspirations, achievements and challenges of
each of our functional areas aligned with four key areas described in the Tomorrow’s Libraries
discussion paper:

1. Collections, resources and programs

Our Challenges over the next 5 – 10 years:
     Improving the collection and reducing the time people need to wait for items; our items per
       capita measure is much lower than average (1.3 compared to State average of 2.0)
     Keeping our collections relevant for our multicultural and socio economically diverse and
       rapidly growing communities
     Managing the transition to digital collections – including issues of digital rights management
       and ownership of content
     Sourcing relevant LOTE materials and making them accessible through the catalogue
     Ensuring programs are accessible to all
     Adequacy and suitability of space for programs inside and outside libraries
     Demonstrating / measuring the long term value of programs that improve literacy and
       learning outcomes to stakeholders
     Managing demand.

Our Opportunities over the next 5 – 10 years:
     Introduction of Print on Demand technology to enable self-publishing by the community
     Providing Book Dispensing machines at places such as railway stations
     Making the library more visible by providing more outreach programs to promote the
       services the library offers and to increase reading and literacy in the community
     Strengthening and developing community partnerships.

2. Library buildings

Our Challenges over the next 5 – 10 years:
     As YPRL is situated in and services a major Melbourne growth corridor, the existing building
       stock has not kept pace with the growth in our population. YPRL also services a number of
       well-established suburbs with ageing building infrastructure
     Capital & operational expenditure - Member Councils need to plan ahead 4 -5 years to
       ensure that capital is allocated to fund new library buildings. They also need to make
       adequate provision for building maintenance and operational expenses. There are many
       competing demands on Councils
     Ensuring all levels of Government understand the role of libraries in the digital age and the
       need to provide spaces for reading, learning and meeting that build literate, engaged and
       inclusive communities
     Ensuring that the Asset Replacement fund is adequate to refurbish /replace the Mobile
       libraries when required.
                                                                                                       2
Our Opportunities relating to buildings over the next 5 – 10 years:
     New libraries at Ivanhoe, Mernda, Epping North and Diamond Creek
     Community meeting rooms at Rosanna and Mill Park
     Refurbishment of Watsonia
     Provision of spaces in libraries for co working / tele working (income potential).


3. Technology

Our Challenges over the next 1 - 5 years:
     With the rapidly changing environment it is a challenge to ensure that hardware and
       software is kept up to date. As with other areas, finding the funding and staff resources is the
       major constraint
     Ensuring our Office and Mail applications are maintained, currently 2/3rds of our pcs require
       upgrading from Windows XP and Office 2003 and we need to replace the out-dated
       GroupWise mail system
     Ensuring that wifi hotspots cope with fast increasing demand – the current controller is no
       longer supported and requires upgrading
     Taking advantage of being an early release site for the NBN rollout and promoting the
       benefits of broadband
     Upgrading servers to ensure business continuity.

Our Opportunities relating to technology over the next 5 – 10 years:
     Providing computer labs / studio spaces for content creation
     Providing a showcase for new technologies to increase digital awareness and learning.

4. Service delivery

Our Challenges over the next 5 – 10 years:
 Being accessible to all both in services and infrastructure. The City of Whittlesea is a growth area
    and the population is estimated to increase 40% in the next 10 years. There will be significant
    new communities building around Mernda and Epping North and further north towards Wollert
 The changing roles of staff because of the implementation of self-service and the evolving nature
    of public libraries
 Funding wage increases through Enterprise Agreements linked to Local Government when the
    library is not in a strong position to hold wage increases to the State Government CPI level. With
    57% of the library’s total expenditure being spent on employee costs, maintaining current service
    levels while minimising annual budget increases is not possible
 Baby boomers are retiring and there will be an increasing demand for services and more
    opportunities for volunteering
 There are significant service gaps emerging in the region. The high level of NESB people in the
    City of Whittlesea and in Heidelberg West also poses challenges in providing materials in their
    first language
 Access to library services and broadband is inadequate in the north of the Nillumbik Shire.

Our Opportunities relating to Service Delivery over the next 5 – 10 years:
Work on strategy to future proof the library service:
     Emphasise 3 core competencies – Reading, Learning, Meeting
     Ensure that we deliver value and services that no one else can
     Understand our long term goal – but work out the details as we go along
     Consult widely – the more people are involved in the thinking about strategy the better
     Understand what are we contributing to the community, what our core competencies are, be
       realistic about future options
     Cooperate with others and work in partnership.
                                                                                              3
Additional challenges: Financial Sustainability

Our Challenges over the next 5 – 10 years:
 While YPRL is a highly efficient library service, with a reputation for innovation and excellence, it
    is falling behind other library services in relation to the amount of funding it receives. This
    impacts on the amount of money spent on the collection and will over time impact on the
    services offered to the community
 Member Councils are under great pressure to provide many services and have indicated that
    they will have difficulty in maintaining the annual increases that are required to support the
    operation of libraries. In drafting the 2012/13 budget it has been established that a total increase
    of 4.37% is required to maintain current services however this translates to a 5.02% increase
    when the State Government contribution is estimated
 It is difficult to develop our Budget not knowing what the State Government contribution will be
    until after the Budget is prepared and adopted. A further difficulty is the calculation of CPI, which
    is less than the MAV’s calculation and annual staff wage increases
 We have been informed that there will be continued unfunded liability for Vision Super. This
    continues to have a significant effect on Member Councils. In December 2010 the amount for the
    regional library was $307,695.

Assistance required to meet the challenges over the next 5 – 10 years:
     For YPRL to at least meet the State average for per capita spending on collections requires an
        additional $402,000 per annum. This would purchase an additional 14,000 items pa.
     Provision of more space for programs and activities
     While we are appreciative of funding opportunities, particularly the Living Libraries
        Infrastructure Program, this is competitive and currently capped at $750,000 per project, far
        short of the cost of building a new library
     An increase in the State Government per capita contribution towards the provision of
        libraries which recognises the true cost of the provision of the infrastructure and operation
        of library services.


Conclusion:

Tomorrow’s Library offers an exciting opportunity for Victorian public libraries to articulate their
challenges and opportunities and outline the assistance required over the next 5 – 10 years. The
major challenges for YPRL are providing equity of access to all residents of the region and ensuring
our collections and technology remain appropriate and relevant.




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1. YPRL’s Vision, Mission, Values & Strategies


Vision / Mission / Values             Relevance to libraries of the future / Changing
                                      demographics and needs

YPRL’s mission is to inform,          We have crafted our vision, mission, values and strategic
educate, inspire and connect. In      planning statements to reflect our aspirations for delivering
doing so we aim to support the
                                      high quality, relevant services to our communities today, and
social, economic and cultural
development of the communities        for the library services we seek to create in the future. We view
we serve.                             our purpose and role as supporting the aspirations of our
                                      member councils through providing:
We recognise that we need to          Reading - Access to a wide range of information sources and
move out of traditional roles and     technologies
establish new relationships and       Learning - opportunities for life wide learning and continuing
move to an access model, where
                                      education
services are delivered just in time
directly to the patron.               Meeting - spaces for our communities to connect.

We aim to:                            YPRL services three diverse municipalities that incorporate
 Be accessible to all                 both established and rapidly growing local government areas.
 Be inclusive                         Our eight branches and mobile library serve suburban and rural
 Empower communities                  areas and the demographics of our client base vary broadly in
 Promote the well-being of our
                                      age, cultural backgrounds, languages, education standards,
 community
 Create opportunities for             disposable income and in many other demographic factors.
 connection
                                      YPRL prides itself in being an early adopter of Web 2, ebooks
We are committed to these values      and RFID technologies. This has already enabled us to expand
 Free and unfettered access to        our community service role and enhance our service offerings.
 information
                                      These changes have delivered many benefits to our
 The vital importance of reading
 and literacy                         communities. We have also recognised that the changing role
 Access for all                       of libraries requires internal structural changes. Following a
 Defending the space for public       comprehensive review of other leading edge library services
 knowledge                            across the globe, and a staff and stakeholder consultation
                                      program to identify how we best organise ourselves to deliver
                                      contemporary library services, we are in the process of re-
                                      structuring YPRL to ensure our policies, systems and process
                                      are aligned with our newly defined purpose.




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2. Goals & Challenges

2.1 Collections, Resources and Programs

2.1.1 Collections

Our Goals and Aspirations

Our goals are to maintain current, relevant and tailored collections to meet the diverse needs of our
communities and to manage the content and media we acquire, describe and make available in the
digital age.

We aspire to a collection of print and digital material that will foster reading and literacy in the
community and provide accessible information and learning for all members of the community.

Our Achievements:

We have made significant changes to improve the quality and accessibility of our collections:
    The Board has over a period of the past 5 years achieved a 6 year depreciation rate on the
      collection through supplementary funding
    Management changes that have improved the collection include floating collections and
      achieving best practice in procurement of library materials by obtaining shelf ready items
      using supplier aided selection
    We are in a consortium with Brisbane City Council to purchase ebooks and have access to the
      largest ebook collection in public libraries in Australia with 11,200 ebook and eaudiobook
      titles
    We have the largest LOTE collection in Victoria with just over 62,000 items in 15 community
      languages to meet the needs of our diverse communities
    We have a high turnover of materials – each item is lent out 7.8 times per year on average.

Our Challenges relating to Collections over the next 5 – 10 years:

       Improving the collection and reducing the time people need to wait for items; our items per
        capita measure is much lower than average (1.3 compared to State average of 2.0)
       Keeping our collections relevant for our multicultural and socio economically diverse and
        rapidly growing communities
       Managing the transition to digital collections – including issues of digital rights management
        and ownership of content
       Sourcing relevant LOTE materials and making them accessible through the catalogue.

Our Strategies to meet these Challenges:

       Development of a Strategic Asset Plan for Collections
       Rearranging shelving – genrefication of non-fiction collections to make books easier to find
       Collaborative purchasing arrangements for LOTE collections.

Our Opportunities relating to Collections over the next 5 – 10 years:

       Introduction of Print on Demand technology to enable self-publishing by the community
       Provision of Book Dispensing machines at places such as railway stations.




                                                                                                         6
2.1.2     Programs

Our Goals and Aspirations

Our goal is to build community capacity through the delivery of a range of innovative programs.
We achieve this goal through promoting our libraries as community hubs and through our
partnerships with over 200 community organisations.

We aspire to be accessible to all and to provide programs that increase literacy; encourage reading;
enable learning; and promote community harmony and well-being.

Our Achievements

In promoting our libraries as community hubs we have:
 Over the past 2 years extended the opening hours of libraries an additional 70 hours per week in
    the region with no additional staffing
 Released staff from desk duties to enable them to focus on program delivery and borrower
    consultations.
(Both these initiatives have been made possible through the introduction of RFID and self-service.)

Our communities value our programs.
    50,000 children attended programs in 2010/2011 (up 4% from previous year.) These
       programs foster pre literacy and literacy skills and are important adjuncts to formal schooling
    Last year we introduced Core Programs. These are held on a regular basis (usually weekly or
       monthly) at all branches. Our current core program offerings and their audiences are:

Program               Babies and    Primary   Secondary   Adult   Retirees   Aged   NESB   People
                      pre-          Age                                                    with
                      schoolers                                                            special
                                                                                           needs
Pre Literacy and
Literacy:

Storytimes:
Baby                        
Pre School Toddler          
Weekend                     
Bedtime                              
Bilingual                                                                          
                                     
Auslan                                                                                         
                                     
Special needs                                                                                  
Mobile Library                        
                                      
Shopping centre
                                      
School holiday              
programs                              
Just4Kids                             
Summer Reading                                   
Program
Youth programs:
Finding MY Place                                                                              
Homework Help                                   
Teen nights                                      
LOL (Laugh Out                                   
Loud)
YReads                                           


                                                                                                       7
Program                 Babies and   Primary   Secondary   Adult   Retirees   Aged   NESB   People
                        pre-         Age                                                    with
                        schoolers                                                           special
                                                                                            needs
Multicultural:
Language Café – ESL                                                                 
and language
learning
Cultural Diversity                                                                  
Week events
Cultural day or                                                                     
week celebrations
New book events
Computer classes                                                                    
Adults:
Marketplace of                                                      
Ideas
Summer of Reading                                                   
Yarra Plenty Reads                                                  
book clubs
Booklovers Festival                                                 
Author talks                                                                                 
Writing, craft,
games and special
interest groups
Older Adults:
WOW (Words on                                                                  
Wheels)
Access for people
                                                                                          
with print disability
Home library                                                                                   
delivery
Digital literacy:
One2one                                                                             
                                                                                    
Basic and advanced
                                                                                    
computer classes

Local history                                                                    
Genealogy                                                           




Our Challenges relating to Programs over the next 5 – 10 years:

         Ensuring programs are accessible to all
         Adequacy and suitability of space for programs inside and outside libraries
         Demonstrating / measuring the long term value of programs that improve literacy and
          learning outcomes to stakeholders
         Managing demand.




                                                                                                      8
Our Strategies to meet these Challenges:

       Expanding our core activities
       Increasing the number of events showcasing more cultures
       Expanding our Outreach efforts to reach people who do not come into libraries (eg
        storytimes at shopping centres and Community Centres, building on the success at Epping
        Plaza and Creeds Farm and attendance at local festivals).

We evaluate our programming annually to ensure that it is relevant.
We are currently undergoing a staffing restructure at our branches to focus attention on 3 key areas:
reading, learning and meeting.

Our Opportunities relating to Programs over the next 5 – 10 years:

       Making the library more visible by providing more outreach programs to promote the
        services the library offers and to increase reading and literacy in the community
       Strengthen and develop community partnerships.

Assistance required to meet the challenges for collections, resources and programs over the next 5 –
10 years:

       For YPRL to at least meet the State average for per capita spending on collections requires an
        additional $402,000 per annum. This would purchase an additional 14,000 items pa.
       Provision of more space for programs and activities.
       The Young Readers Program was a valued service and providing assistance for libraries to
        promote early pre literacy materials to parents and carers through State Government
        agencies
       Continuance of the highly popular Premiers’ Reading Challenge – this is a wonderful
        promotion of reading to primary aged children.




                                                                                                     9
2.2     Library buildings

Our Goals and Aspirations

Our goals are to ensure equitable coverage and provision of quality library services across the region
and ensure Member Councils obtain maximum benefit from belonging to a regional library system.

We aspire to accessible, vibrant community spaces which are full of content, ideas, programs,
activities and meet the differing needs of the community.

Our Vision for Libraries of the Future:

Public libraries are community hubs - attractive, friendly and flexible spaces full of media where
people can read, learn and meet. They promote the core value of sharing – resources, ideas and
culture.

Our libraries of the future will:
    Provide content that is relevant, attractive and visible
    Provide up to date technology and maximise the opportunities of broadband
    Offer a multimedia experience with facilities for creating music, video and web content
    Be presented like bookshops and be attractive and well maintained
    Provide quiet individual places as well as communal spaces
    Be adjacent to or include cafes / coffee shops

To deliver services staff will be skilled and knowledgeable in content, applications and community
engagement. There will be a strong sense of community ownership, encouraged by genuine
consultation and input in regard to collections, programs and services.

The following table describes our current infrastructure and anticipated changes:

Location /         Current Status                 Anticipated changes        Infrastructure changes
Building                                          over next 5 - 10 years     required to meet
                                                                             changing demographic
Banyule City
Council
Ivanhoe Library    Old and totally inadequate     Ivanhoe Structure Plan     A new library with much
                   building infrastructure.       currently being            more space & facilities
                   Little space for programs      developed which            including community
                   and activities. Poor access    includes Civic Precinct.   meeting rooms and
                   for people with mobility                                  activity spaces is required
                   issues and for parents with                               in Ivanhoe. This will
                   young children.                                           include access for people
                                                                             with mobility issues and
                                                                             for parents with young
                                                                             children.




                                                                                                      10
Location /         Current Status                   Anticipated changes          Infrastructure changes
Building                                            over next 5 - 10 years       required to meet changes
Rosanna Library    Inadequate building              Planned relocation of        Additional and improved
                   infrastructure with severe       council offices and          meeting spaces could turn
                   space constraints.               redevelopment                Rosanna library into a
                   Current library building         presents opportunities       vital community hub.
                   provides easy access for         for improving library
                   older people and people          facilities for the
                   with disabilities.               Rosanna community.
Watsonia library   Good standard of building        It is 10 years since         Minor refurbishment
                   infrastructure. The library      Watsonia was                 proposed 2012/13
                   is appropriately sited and       refurbished and it           (subject to funding) to
                   sized. It is an attractive and   needs to be updated          increase space for PCs and
                   well -patronised service.        to ensure it remains in      improve workflows.
                                                    good condition.
Mobile Library     The Mobile Library stops at
                   Heidelberg West and
                   Yallambie.
Shire of
Nillumbik
Diamond Valley     Good standard of building
Library            infrastructure.
                   Diamond Valley library
                   serves a limited catchment
                   and the site is not highly
                   visible or easily accessible.
Eltham Library     Excellent standard of
                   building infrastructure
                   Recently upgraded and is
                   of a very high standard /
                   highly functional.
The Mobile         The mobile library visits a
Library            number of outlying
                   townships on a weekly
                   basis.
Service gaps       A service gap exists at          A library facility will be   Library to be located with
                   Diamond Creek / northern         provided at Diamond          other community
                   reaches of the Shire.            Creek.                       facilities.




                                                                                                         11
Location /          Current Status                 Anticipated changes       Infrastructure changes
Building                                           over next 5 - 10 years    required to meet changes
City of
Whittlesea
Mill Park Library   Excellent standard of                                    A community meeting
                    building infrastructure.                                 room would enhance Mill
                    Well sited on Plenty Road.                               Park Library.
Lalor Library       Good standard of building                                Additional building
                    infrastructure.                                          infrastructure to meet
                    Extremely well used library                              growing community
                    and is at capacity                                       demand or additional
                                                                             library provision to the
                                                                             north.
Thomastown          Excellent standard of
Library             building infrastructure. The
                    library is enhanced by the
                    provision of meeting rooms
The Mobile          The mobile library visits      There is currently        Mobile library services
library             Whittlesea township,           community pressure        need to be provided to
                    Mernda and Doreen.             from the Whittlesea       the Epping North area
                                                   township to establish a   until a library is built.
                                                   library there.

Service gaps                                       A 40% population          Service gaps exist in the
                                                   increase in City of       two growth corridors
                                                   Whittlesea over the       along the municipality and
                                                   next 10 years along       preliminary work has
                                                   the growth corridors      been done on provision of
                                                                             services at Epping North
                                                                             and Mernda.
Mobile Library
Services
The Mobile          Visits 13 sites on a weekly    Relocation of sites if    Trailer will require
Library             cycle                          library buildings are     refurbishing in 5 years.
                                                   provided                  Livery will require
                                                                             replacing in 5 years.
                                                                             Trailer will require
                                                                             replacement in 10 years.
The Outreach        Visits 39 Aged Care            Anticipated growth in     Vehicle will require
vehicle             facilities on a 3 week cycle   aged care facilities in   refurbishing in 5 years.
                                                   the region to cater for   Livery will require
                                                   aging population          replacing in 5 years.
                                                                             Vehicle will require
                                                                             replacement in 10 years.




                                                                                                         12
Our Challenges over the next 5 – 10 years:

     As YPRL is situated in and services a major Melbourne growth corridor, the existing building
    stock has not kept pace with the growth in our population. YPRL also services a number of well-
    established suburbs with ageing building infrastructure.
     Capital and operational expenditure - member Councils need to plan ahead 4 -5 years to
    ensure that capital is allocated to fund new library buildings. They also need to make adequate
    provision for building maintenance and operational expenses. There are many competing
    demands on Councils.
     Ensuring all levels of Government understand the role of libraries in the digital age and the
    need to provide spaces for reading, learning and meeting that build literate, engaged and
    inclusive communities.
     Ensuring that the Asset Replacement fund is adequate to refurbish /replace the Mobile
    libraries when required.

Our Strategies to meet these Challenges:

A number of significant reports have been prepared for or by Member Councils regarding library
provision in the region over the past few years. The regional library works with Member Councils to
advise on library infrastructure.

We have suggested innovative solutions such as the Reading Lounge and Pop Up Library being
proposed for the Aurora CAC to provide services prior to the establishment of a permanent library in
Epping North.

Our Opportunities relating to buildings over the next 5 – 10 years:

       New libraries at Ivanhoe, Mernda, Epping North and Diamond Creek
       Community meeting rooms at Rosanna and Mill Park
       Refurbishment of Watsonia
       Provision of spaces in libraries for co working / tele working (income potential).

Assistance required to meet the challenges for buildings over the next 5 – 10 years:

While we are appreciative of funding opportunities, particularly the Living Libraries Infrastructure
Program, this is competitive and currently capped at $750,000 per project; far short of the cost of
building a new library.




                                                                                                       13
2.3       Technology

Our Goals and Aspirations

Our goals are to be at the forefront of online delivery of public library services and an early adopter
of relevant digital products and services including cloud-based solutions.

We aspire to be innovative and provide leading edge facilities through the Digital Hubs program at
Mill Park Library.

Our Achievements

YPRL has had a history of being an early adopter and providing good access to technology,
particularly in the City of Whittlesea, which has had a lower than average take up of home ownership
of pcs.

YPRL has been well served by available IT infrastructure and systems over recent years, which has led
to us being recognised as technology leaders in library services. Our achievements include:
     First library service in Australia to move to SirsiDynix’s Software as Service model (cloud
        computing) for the Library Management System
     Successful implementation of RFID in 2007 to all branches
     Developed a printing and photocopying solution that is now being copied in other States
     Design and implementation of a Collections Management tool that is the envy of other
        libraries
     Development of our new website with its integrated discovery layer and social aspects, the
        first in Australia.

Significant investments were made by the Board in 2005/06 in upgrading the network and in 2007/08
for implementing RFID and self-service technology. These large capital investments have proven to
be extremely beneficial to the library service and have enabled increased opening hours at branches
with no additional staff.

The library service is currently spending less than 6% of the total recurrent budget on computer
services (excluding staff costs). For 2011/12 this is $700,627.

An asset replacement fund is provided for the replacement of IT equipment and hardware. Most IT
equipment is leased, as this is the most cost effective way to ensure our technology remains up to
date and relevant.

Our Challenges over the next 1 - 5 years:

         With the rapidly changing environment it is a challenge to ensure that hardware and
          software is kept up to date. As with other areas, finding the funding and staff resources is the
          major constraint
         Ensuring our Office and Mail applications are maintained, currently 2/3rds of our pcs require
          upgrading from Windows XP and Office 2003 and we need to replace the out-dated
          GroupWise mail system
         Ensuring that wifi hotspots cope with fast increasing demand – the current controller is no
          longer supported and requires upgrading
         Taking advantage of being an early release site for the NBN rollout and promoting the
          benefits of broadband
         Upgrading servers to ensure business continuity.

                                                                                                       14
Our Strategies to Meet these Challenges:

YPRL has a comprehensive and detailed strategic plan for the development of its technology
capability. This strategy articulates issues and actions under each of the following key areas:
    Ensure good management information
    Ensure capacity and support for the delivery of Online / Digital / ICT Programs and services
    Manage the Library’s IT infrastructure (HW, SW, Apps) to ensure responsiveness, flexibility,
        sustainability and agility.

We have a grant application submitted for the Department of Broadband, Communications and the
Digital Economy to establish a Digital Hub at Mill Park library.

Our Opportunities relating to technology over the next 5 – 10 years:

       Providing computer labs / studio spaces for content creation
       Providing a showcase for new technologies to increase digital awareness and learning.




                                                                                                15
2.4 Service Delivery

In 2008 a review of funding arrangements was undertaken at the request of one of the Member
Councils and following comprehensive and independent reviews, a revised agreement was finalised
in 2009. Member Councils remain committed to the regional library model, recognising the
efficiencies and enhanced services enabled by sharing resources and amortising costs.

Our Goals and Aspirations:

We view our purpose and role as supporting the aspirations of our member councils through
providing:
     Reading - access to a wide range of information sources and technologies
     Learning - opportunities for informal learning and continuing education
     Meeting - spaces for our communities to connect.

Eight years ago YPRL took the decision to move the regional emphasis from technical services to a
community engagement focus. We moved to supplier aided selection and shelf ready material
delivered directly to branches. We saved over $300,000 annually by adopting this model and have
reinvested the savings in a Community Engagement team which provides specialist regional staff in
Local History, Reading and Literacy Development, Seniors and Volunteers, Youth, New Technologies
and Marketing. These staff build partnerships, provide specialist advice and support and liaise with
Member Councils and key stakeholders.

Five years ago we implemented RFID at all branches. This has changed the focus of branch work and
has freed up staff to provide more programs and activities while also allowing us to open an
additional 70 hours a week with no additional staff.

Our Challenges over the next 5 – 10 years:

   Being accessible to all both in services and infrastructure. The City of Whittlesea is a growth area
    and the population is estimated to increase 40% in the next 10 years. There will be significant
    new communities building around Mernda and Epping North and further north towards Wollert
   The changing roles of staff because of the implementation of self-service and the evolving nature
    of public libraries
   Funding wage increases through Enterprise Agreements linked to Local Government when the
    library is not in a strong position to hold wage increases to the State Government CPI level. With
    57% of the library’s total expenditure being spent on employee costs, maintaining current service
    levels while minimising annual budget increases is not possible
   Baby boomers are retiring and there will be an increasing demand for services and more
    opportunities for volunteering
   There are significant service gaps emerging in the region. The high level of NESB people in the
    City of Whittlesea and in Heidelberg West also poses challenges in providing materials in their
    first language
   Access to library services and broadband is inadequate in the north of the Nillumbik Shire.




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Comparative statistics 2010/11

Item                                                YPRL                     Victorian state
                                                                             average
Total expenditure per capita                        $40.00                   $43.80
Council total expenditure per capita                $27.70                   $28.70
Library materials                                   $ 5.03                   $6.20
Cost per loan                                       $3.97                    $4.70
State Government per capita                         $5.18                    $5.78

Our Strategies to meet these Challenges:

YPRL is committed to continuing the development of a highly skilled and customer-focussed
workforce, who through the provision of services add value to the communities we serve. We are
currently realigning the workforce – through the implementation of a Branch structure based on 3
areas of Reading, Learning and Meeting and ensuring all staff have the skills and competencies they
need to provide the services and support that our customers want within this new structure.

Community consultation – we consult with the community in developing our strategic plan, our
collections and our strategic frameworks. We seek feedback through the annual Nexus survey and
local surveys.

With the changing role of libraries, new roles will emerge for public library staff. We are providing
the opportunity for staff to learn new skills in areas such as event management, adult learning,
outreach, reader’s advisory, information technology and managing partnerships.

YPRL has almost 300 volunteers engaged in various activities, programs and tasks which we could not
deliver without their assistance. The number of volunteers is up as baby boomers reach retirement
age and are seeking meaningful ways to contribute to their local community.

Our Opportunities relating to Service Delivery over the next 5 – 10 years:

Develop a strategy to future proof the library service:

       Emphasise 3 core competencies – Reading, Learning, Meeting
       Ensure that we deliver value and services that no one else can
       Understand our long term goal – but work out the details as we go along
       Consult widely – the more people are involved in the thinking about strategy the better
       Understand what are we contributing to the community, what our core competencies are, be
        realistic about future options
       Cooperate with others and work in partnership.




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3.       Financial Sustainability and Performance
         Measures
Our Goals and Aspirations

Our financial goals for YPRL are:
    The organisation is sustainable and appropriately funded, including realistic asset
        replacement
    Strategic and operational plans are robust, meaningful and future orientated
    Income from other sources is maximised.

To achieve these goals YPRL must:
     Continue to provide a return on investment through the delivery of efficient community
        services
     Achieve the financial targets and Key Performance Indicators as articulated in our strategic
        and business plans
     Sustain our position as one of Victoria’s most progressive and efficient library services
     Attract a level of funding commensurate with our performance (as compared to other library
        services within the state of Victoria)
     Attract additional funding for capital and operating expenses to accommodate anticipated
        increases in demand for services resulting from substantial population growth.

Our Achievements

Yarra Plenty Regional Library, founded in the 1960s, is today a well-established organisation servicing
a population of 343,000. YPRL has:
        126,000 members
        447,000 items
        A staff of 152 (93 equivalent full time)

According to SGS’s Dollars and Sense methodology YPRL:
Costs (2011)           $10,654,000
Benefits (2011)        $40,752,000
Net benefit            $30,098,000
Benefit cost ratio     3.83

Economic impact in local economy:
Output                 $17,199,000
Value added            $10,870,000
Employment             176

In 2011/12 the library services operating budget was $12,456,837 funded from the following sources:

         Council Contributions - $9,857,701 (79.13%) - (City of Whittlesea, City of Banyule, Shire of
          Nillumbik combined)
         State Government Grants – $1,971,284 (15.82%)
         Library Operations - $627,852 (5.04 %) (User Charges and Fees, Investment Income and Sale
          of Services)
         Grant funding - $218,007




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Benchmarking Key Performance Indicators against Vic average and other library services:

Key Performance Indicator                          YPRL Performance         State Average
Staffing – population served per staff member      3,694                    3,271
Acquisitions per capita                            0.19 per capita          0.2
Collection items per capita                        1.3                      2.0
Resources per member                               3.52                     4.0
Number of loans per capita                         10.1                     8.5
Loans per member                                   27.3                     18.5
Loans per staff member                             37,208                   27,016
Loans per hour open                                129                      86.9
Item turnover rate                                 7.7                      5.1
Public access pcs per 1,000 population             5.0                      4.3

Our Challenges:

       While YPRL is a highly efficient library service, with a reputation for innovation and
        excellence, it is falling behind other library services in relation to the amount of funding it
        receives. This impacts on the amount of money spent on the collection and will over time
        impact on the services offered to the community
       Member Councils are under great pressure to provide many services and have indicated that
        they will have difficulty in maintaining the annual increases that are required to support the
        operation of libraries. In drafting the 2012/13 budget it has been established that a total
        increase of 4.37% is required to maintain current services; however this translates to a 5.02%
        increase when the State Government contribution is estimated
       It is difficult to develop our Budget not knowing what the State Government contribution will
        be until after the Budget is prepared and adopted. A further difficulty is the calculation of
        CPI, which is less than the MAV’s calculation and annual staff wage increases
       We have been informed that there will be continued unfunded liability for Vision Super. This
        continues to have a significant effect on Member Councils. In December 2010 the amount for
        the regional library was $307,695.

Our Strategies to meet these Challenges:

The Board has requested that the Library Service be more proactive in raising income but
understands there is limited scope to do this. One area that has been identified for investigation is
charging to attend programs held in the library. At this stage this is problematic due to:
     Community resistance to a fee for service
     Affordability and ability to access programs for pre literacy and literacy, learning and
        celebrating community diversity
     Limited amount of money that would be raised compared with the administrative costs
        associated with handling any such funds.




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Assistance required to meet the Challenges over the next 5 – 10 years:

       For YPRL to at least meet the State average for per capita spending on collections requires an
        additional $402,000 per annum. This would purchase an additional 14,000 items pa.
       The Young Readers Program was a valued service and providing assistance for libraries to
        promote early pre literacy materials to parents and carers through State Government
        agencies
       Continuance of the highly popular Premiers’ Reading Challenge – this is a wonderful
        promotion of reading to primary aged children
       Provision of more space for programs and activities
       While we are appreciative of funding opportunities, particularly the Living Libraries
        Infrastructure Program, this is competitive and currently capped at $750,000 per project; far
        short of the cost of building a new library
       An increase in the State Government per capita contribution towards the provision of
        libraries which recognises the true cost of the provision of the infrastructure and operation
        of library services
       Ability to continue to source grant funding.


Conclusion:

Tomorrow’s Library offers an exciting opportunity for Victorian public libraries to articulate their
challenges and opportunities and outline the assistance required over the next 5 – 10 years. The
major challenges for YPRL are providing equity of access to all residents of the region and ensuring
our collections and technology remain appropriate and relevant.




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