It has taken five months, but finally, this blog is up to date. This post marks the first post in which I am not trying to catch up on things that happened before this week, which is convenient; since this week marks the busiest week I have had, in terms of unique events on my calendar. So, for a change, I’m going to do one of those daily-record type blog posts (note: this is only my afternoon activity, I’m put on a rota to carry out specific tasks in the mornings in Customer Services).
If you’ve spoken to me about the Master’s course, then you will probably have heard by now that I have always intended to go abroad, not something I have addressed before in this blog. Every day I try and do a little bit more research into where I’m going and into the application process, so Monday involved going to a talk at the Careers Centre, held by an organisation that specialises in assisting UK applicants who want to study in the USA. It did not tell me a lot that I did not know, as I have already been through their website with a fine-tooth comb, but it did clarify a few things that I was not sure about.
Monday was strangely quiet, since there was only me and Sara in the office, when normally there would be seven of us, spread across two rooms. Luckily, it was Sara with whom I had planned a meeting, because I am interested to know more about the work she does as a Web Content Co-ordinator. She spends two days a week focused on web-based activities, as well as her regular role as the Faculty Team Librarian for Earth & Environment, Geography, and Transport Studies. She took me through the decision to abandon the old library website in 2010, through the process of building a new website from scratch in 2011, then the launch of the new library website in January 2012, finishing at February this year, when the library won a national prize for our new visual identity, the Design Effectiveness Award. I used both the old and new websites as an undergrad, so I can assure you that the new one is an immeasurable improvement (example statistic: the new website has about 1500 pages, the old one had around 10,000).
I attended Sara’s Web Content Team meeting, happy that I was attending a meeting which I wasn’t minuting for a change. They spoke of the upcoming plans for the website (probably not allowed to write about anything I heard), plus I agreed to attend a training session on Jadu, the software used by the library to maintain the website.
For the final hour of the day, I was minuting the Sci-Eng Library Reps meeting again. I found this task quite difficult and time-consuming the first time, but this meeting was very straightforward to minute and write up. This change is probably because I’ve done an LSAB meeting, so everything else seems like a breeze in comparison. Also, the more you do something, the easier it becomes, and I’ve done a lot of minuting now.
Wednesday is Purchase Alerts day, so I got those fired off within ten minutes and made a start on the minutes from yesterday. I didn’t get to finish them though, since Penny and Katie arrived for their tour of the Edward Boyle. Sean and I have already visited their libraries (Leeds Met and Bradford respectively), so he showed them around the Brotherton, then I took them around the EBL and also around Health Sciences (a very short tour, since I only really know where the training room is down there and that’s it!). Sean came down after this and we all had a short chat together in the Airport Lounge (a café, the name of which they assumed was a joke), but then I had to jet off for evening duty. I spent this on reception with Eddie, a new Brotherton employee who I’d been asked to oversee.
It’s the week of the All-Staff meeting, which is actually only for half the staff, since the rest attend the repeat meeting on Friday morning. I heard about a comment from a mystery shopper, who had been employed to test out the quality of customer service provided by the library, it was as follows: ‘The Edward Boyle Library is old and dated, but that doesn’t impact on the quality of the service’. I thought this was a fair point, nicely summarised.
Following this meeting, I met with Janet, an FTL from the Arts & Social Sciences team, to talk about my involvement in the Library’s preparations for Open Days. She told me that my role would be that of the ‘hunter gatherer’; I am to research advertising and marketing techniques employed by libraries, as well as the different methods that libraries can use to provide tours and information to visitors, particularly in relation to Open Days. If you’re reading this and you’re a Graduate Trainee or someone on our Twitter, then I will probably be speaking to you about this in the coming weeks!
I met up with Sally, my mentor, for an informal chat about how things are going, my project, my plans etc. I always find out useful stuff from talking to her, for example this time she told me about some things that she’d come across in her role as Library’s rep for International Students (I didn’t even know we had one of those), which will be useful for the report I’m writing for Janet.
Finally, I came back to the EBL and started writing this blog post, which took me up to 5pm but I didn’t have chance to post. I intend to blog on Friday afternoons from now on, since I’m up to date (although I’ve not started as I mean to go on, since I’m actually putting this online on a Monday).
Thanks for reading!