Takin it to the stacks Roving Reference at North Vancouver City by liaoqinmei


									      Reference and RA 2.0:
      Meeting customers at
          “point of need”

            A presentation
      by Lorraine Kelley for the
Kootenay Library Federation conference
        Friday, June 13, 2008
     This aftenoon’s agenda
Part ONE (1:30 to 2:30 pm)
•   A little background: definitions and philosophies
•   How physical space plays a role in providing excellent
    customer service
•   How actions of in-house staff has an impact upon
    excellent customer service

Part TWO (3:00 to 4:00 pm)
•   Examples of providing excellent customer service in
    the digital world
         Definition: Library 2.0
“Library 2.0 simply means making your library’s
  space (virtual and physical) more interactive,
  collaborative, and driven by community needs.
  The basic drive is to get people back into the
  library by making the library relevant to what
  they want and need in their daily lives…to make
  the library a destination and not an afterthought.”
                  - Sarah Houghton (Librarian in Black)
 What do we really mean by “excellent
         customer service”?
Remember Raganathan:
  –   Books are for use. (Collections should be developed
      to meet the needs of every part of the community).
  –   Every reader his [or her] book.
  –   Every book its reader.
  –   Save the time of the User.
  –   The library is a growing organism.
What are our real priorities? Are we only paying lip
  service to providing excellent customer
                  Fish Philosophy
•   Be there
•   Play
•   Make their day
•   Choose your attitude

How do we enhance the customer
      to ensure everyone
     gets what they need?
(both within and away from the library)

In other words: “how do we meet
 the customer at point of need”?
Assess user need
• Really quick service or friendly chatting?
• Self-sufficient (no staff interaction) or
  totally staff-led?
• Level of expertise and difficulty?
• To teach or not to teach?
• To approach or not to approach?

                  . . .and assume user
Impact of physical space on customer
  service: the WOW factor
• What can we do to impress library
  customers as soon as they enter?
• New is nice but old can be improved
• Concentrate efforts on creating a
  “merchandising” area near the library
  entrance: “extreme library makeover”
        Battle Creek, MI:
Helen Warner Branch entrance area
Reading corners
   Bookmarks, lists, newsletters
• Help readers become self-sufficient (remember, many
  have neither the time nor the inclination to ask for help)

• Use “shelf-talkers” to help people find their way

• Bookmarks in the stacks

• RA in the stacks
        When passive is active:
  Booklists, Bookmarks & Displays in

• http://www.vla.org/06Conf/Programs/Display%20and%20Bookli
                 From a presentation by
                    Neil Hollands &
                    Melissa Simpson
             Williamsburg Regional Library
     Info desks: the new look
• Small is beautiful
• Keep it clean and uncluttered!
• Any papers, books, “work” between the
  staff person and the customer is a barrier
  to service
Concertina (by Eurobib)
Let’s not get too comfortable!
• Desk service is public service (solely).
• If you have a separate info desk in your
  library, do your best to have it staffed with
  someone doing “dedicated” customer
               Meet and greet
Optimally, staff station should have a sight line
 with the front entrance

      Look up and make
   eye contact (if the visitor
   looks at you) with every
  person as he or she enters
          the library

  Demonstrate willingness to
  be of service, in a tangible
               Meet and greet
• Smile, nod, say “hello” as befits the staff person

    “A smile shows that you
      like yourself; you like
      your current place in
      the world and you’re
     happy with the people
     you’re interacting with.
     No one will say you’re
    crabby if you’re smiling.
         A smile says, I’m
        approachable and
            confident.”         From Ways to Say Hello:
              Roving reference
“how we do it” (at NVCL)
• Two person desk shifts (librarian & library assistant):
  80% of the time we are open.

• One person is assigned to desk while the other roves

• Allowing for coffee breaks and transitions, scheduled
  roving is practised 50% of the time during two person

• Recorded “walkabouts” occur during one person desk
 Hierarchy of Reference                                       Most
 Approachability                                            Behaviours

                         Standing and eye          93 %
                         contact - And smiling!

                         Standing and eye          90 %
                         Helping another patron    12 %
                         Standing and writing      11 %
David A. Tyckoson,
California State Univ.   Sitting and eye contact   10 %
(Fresno video study)
                         Using the computer        10 %
Presented by
                         Reading                   5%
Joan Giannone at
OLA conference,
                         Talking on the phone      1%
Jan. 31, 2008
Impact #1: Higher info desk stats
• 25% drop in total queries answered on info desk from

• First five months of 2007: average queries answered per
  month: 3641

• After launching Ask Me! on June 5/07, average queries
  answered per month for the next 6 months: 4111, an
  increase of 470 queries per month. Up by 13%

• Range of additional queries answered per month
  between 418 and 637
              Impact 2:
   Increased customer satisfaction
• More questions answered

• People who don’t normally ask for help get service

• Creation of general friendly, welcoming atmosphere.
  (“No, but thanks for asking.”)

• Increased likelihood that customers will feel more
  comfortable approaching the desk or a roving staff
  person on another occasion
                  Impact 3:
             Revitalized info staff
• Redefines what a “successful” desk shift looks like

• More conversations with customers

• Opportunities to apply what you know, especially for
  subject specialists

• Greater sense of satisfaction as a result of interactions,
  feelings of accomplishment, grateful customers
The final word on roving:

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