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2008 MINITEX/OCLC User Group Meeting

Last week MINITEX held three sessions of the MINITEX/OCLC User Group Meeting—on the University of Minnesota campus in St. Paul 10/21, at North Dakota State University in Fargo 10/22, and at Siouxland Libraries’ Oakview branch in Sioux Falls 10/23. Carla and I attended all three sessions. Mike Morey from OCLC also joined us.

Each session was devoted to the presentation ‘Creating the Capacity for Change: Transforming Library Workflows and Organization’ by R2 Consulting LLC a firm that specializes in workflow analysis. In addition Bill DeJohn and (in ND & SD) a Members’ Council representative updated us on changes at OCLC, and Virginia or I described OCLC services that can help improve workflow.

R2 gave us a thorough overview of the challenges facing technical services and recommended many possible solutions. Many changes—especially in technology—have impacted workflow. R2 emphasized thoroughly studying a library’s current workflow and its costs, identifying possible best practices, enabling the library to make changes, and demonstrating the benefits of change. Each session was full of observations and suggestions about what procedures to abandon and what changes to adopt.

Each session was well attended. Carla and I got to visit with librarians from all over the region. Our travels went smoothly despite some rain each day and even snow (!) on the way from Fargo to Sioux Falls. We were too busy to do any site seeing, but we did have dinner Wednesday evening at the Carnaval Brazilian Grill in Sioux Falls. The restaurant is colorful and spacious. The food was wonderful, the music was lively, and many of the staff were dressed like gauchos. Carla who lived in Brazil for several years and speaks fluent Portuguese gave me a quick course in Brazilian cuisine. If you happen to be in Sioux Falls, I highly recommend dining at Carnaval.

Here's a few pictures from our trip:

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The NDSU Library

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Participants at the NDSU session.

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Matt Barnes of R2 at NDSU

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The Siouxland Libraries Oakview Branch

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Inside Oakview

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SD librarians talking with Rick Lugg of R2

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