Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

March 15, 2006

Training Plan Draft - revised as of 3/15/06

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Posted by at 10:03 AM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

January 19, 2006

Draft of Content Combining the 3 Categories

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Posted by at 1:56 PM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

January 12, 2006

Revised Supervisory/Environment Critical Practices

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Synthesis of Supervisory/Environment
IADS Customer Service Workgroup
1/12/06


Definition of terms:
Critical Practice: Area of focus
Performance Measure: Ideal outcome if all observable behavior suggestions are followed
Observable Behavior: Expectations for achieving Performance Measure
________________________________________________________________________

Critical Practice: Communication with Staff
Performance Measure: Staff is aware of the most current information and procedures so patrons can be served accurately and efficiently.

Observable Behavior:
• Provide a mechanism to inform employees of current information and procedures.
• Convey information in a manner most efficient for the unit. Recommended ways include: email, meetings, unit blog, and newsletter.
• Update procedures promptly whenever changes are made, and review procedures at least once per school term.
________________________________________________________________________

Critical Practice: Standards and Performance Reviews
Performance Measure: All library staff positions reflect an institutional commitment to customer service.

Observable Behavior:
• Incorporate a customer service component into all job descriptions.
• Conduct performance evaluations of student staff once per term or after a predetermined number of hours have been worked.
• Evaluate full-time staff on customer service component of job description during annual review.
________________________________________________________________________

Critical Practice: Customer Service Feedback
Performance Measure: Continually improve the quality of customer service being provided by library units by soliciting feedback from both internal and external customers.
Observable Behavior:
• Survey users annually.
• Review and incorporate relevant Libqual data and other survey data into unit procedures.
• Provide a mechanism for voicing comments and concerns, with an option of anonymity.
________________________________________________________________________

Critical Practice: Contact Lists
Performance Measure: Units provide and maintain accurate and up-to-date contact lists so patrons receive accurate and efficient referrals.
Observable Behavior:
• Post and maintain a prioritized contact list with names and numbers of all relevant units.
• Post information in a manner most efficient for the unit.
• Update list promptly whenever changes occur, and review information at least once per school term.
• Train staff to access online directories and library-specific websites.
________________________________________________________________________

Critical Practice: Emergency Contact Lists
Performance Measure: Student workers and staff are able to easily access emergency contacts so emergencies are handled efficiently.
Observable Behavior:
• Make available prioritized lists of staff personal numbers (home or cell) as a back up emergency call list.
• Post information in a manner most efficient for the unit.
• Update list promptly whenever changes occur, and review information at least once per school term.
• Train staff to refer to emergency documentation (three-ring binders) for emergency procedures.
________________________________________________________________________

Critical Practice: Motivating Student Workers
Performance Measure: Units provide a fun and welcoming work environment to ensure that student workers provide the highest level of customer service.
Observable Behavior:
• Provide a safe working environment.
• Solicit feedback on ways to improve the work environment.
• Continue to explore ways to motivate student workers through internal and external dialogue (Student of the Month, IADS Forum discussions, community boards, advance notice of upcoming events, etc.).
• Highlight the positive aspects of staff members’ performance.
• Encourage staff to explore problem-solving solutions.
• Empower staff with tools and responsibilities so they will meet and exceed expectations.
• Allow mistakes to become an opportunity for improvement by using errors as an occasion for private, individualized coaching.
• Share positive feedback.


Posted by at 2:30 PM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

December 29, 2005

Full Revised Frontline Interaction

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1. Critical Practice: Approach patrons

Performance Measures: Inquire and provide assistance to patrons who appear confused or have a question.

Observable Behavior: Scan or rove service areas to ascertain if any patrons need help. Approach patrons who appear in need of assistance.

2. Critical Practice: Approachability

Performance Measures: Appear helpful and friendly so that patrons will be encouraged to approach staff for help.

Observable Behavior: Make eye contact and smile when patrons enter the library or approach the desk. When checking items out to patrons, ask if the patron found everything all right. When giving directions, walk with patrons over to photocopiers, stacks, etc. instead of pointing when possible. Wear Library Staff nametag. Wear non-offensive, appropriate clothing when working. Do not use offensive language. Respect patrons as humans and not as interruptions, and treat them accordingly.

3. Critical Practice: Anticipate patron’s needs

Performance Measures: Ensure patrons do not leave confused and frustrated.

Observable Behavior: Identify confusing concepts for patrons and anticipate their questions. Provide patrons with explanations of library policies and procedures, (why an item is in process, or how ILL works and how long it takes, etc). Provide patrons with alternatives and options to meet their needs.

4. Critical Practice: Keep signage accurate and up-to-date

Performance Measures: Ensure that patrons are properly informed.

Observable Behaviors: Update signage upon policy change within one week. Review signage once a semester for accuracy and update if necessary within one month.

5. Critical Practice: Keep commitments to patrons

Performance Measures: Maintain patron satisfaction by following up on promised action, (searches, removal of fine, etc).

Observable Behaviors: Respond promptly to patron within one business day. Follow through until problem is resolved.

6. Critical Practice: Post standards

Performance Measures: Assure patrons of quality customer service and hold unit accountable.

Observable Behavior: Post customer service standards for public via signage and library specific internet site. Review and update standards once a year.

7. Critical Practice: Phone protocol

Performance Measure: Maintain a consistent, helpful, friendly service to patrons when using the phone.

Observable Behaviors: Use appropriate greeting. Example: identify unit, give your name, followed by, “How may I help you?? Train staff to properly transfer phone calls. When transferring a patron, offer the transfer phone number. Example: “I’m going to transfer you, but in case this doesn’t work, here’s the phone number.? Date and initial all written messages.

8. Critical Practice: Diffuse difficult patron situations

Performance Measures: Attempt to resolve difficult interactions by addressing patron's complaints.

Observable Behaviors: Refer to supervisor when possible. Remain calm at all times. Listen thoroughly to patron’s complaint and acknowledge their case with empathy. Explain library policies and procedures with patience. Provide patrons with alternatives and options to work out solutions to their problems. Examples: Inform patron about ILL if a book cannot be found or reimburse patron if they lost money using the photocopiers, etc. Provide patrons with feedback form/comment card to file a complaint or criticism of policies. Explain that the comment card will be reviewed by management and changes in policy will be considered.

9. Critical Practices: Patron priority management

Performance Measures: Help waiting patrons as efficiently as possible.

Observable Behaviors: When already helping a patron, acknowledge other patrons who are waiting in line. Example: "I am helping this patron, I'll be right with you in a moment." If the first patron in line has a reference question and the other patrons in line have a quick question or need to check items out, ask the first patron to wait, saying, " Could you please wait for a moment? I'm going to quickly help these other patrons first." When helping a patron in person and another patron calls by phone, give priority to the onsite patron.

10. Critical Practice: Greetings

Performance Measures: Keep greetings to patrons friendly and welcoming.

Observable Behaviors: Greet approaching patrons, (eg. "Hello, how may I help you?") Refrain from using rote responses, ("Paper or plastic?" for example)..

11. Critical Practice: Referrals

Performance Measures: Provide patrons with the necessary referrals to meet their needs.

Observable Behaviors: Refer patron to supervisor, reference, BPF, etc., when patrons' needs exceed your expertise. Give patron proper directions or phone numbers of referral, and name if possible. Explain to patron referral's hours and in what capacity they can help. Inform patron why they are being referred. Encourage patron to return to service point if their needs were not met. Follow up with patron if possible.

Posted by at 10:55 PM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

December 19, 2005

Revised Frontline Interactions

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Posted by at 12:26 PM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

December 15, 2005

Supervising/Environment (EYN)

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Posted by at 11:55 AM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

December 14, 2005

Jerrie's update to Practice Measures and Standards (Supervising Environment)

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Posted by at 11:09 AM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

December 8, 2005

Definitions of Best Practices/Competencies

Jerrie raises an important point about clarifying the definitions of best practices and core competencies. Each organization will have its own words to describe what activities are important to it, working from the more general to the more specific. And I think we do want to get to a more specific level, because we need to describe "what it looks like" (to give good customer service) so we can measure it. At the Univ of Arizona, 3 levels of words such as "Critical Processes", "Performance Measures", and "Quality Standards" were used to go from general to specific. As an example:
Critical Process = Shelving and Storage
Performance Measure = Ensure that customers are able to easily and in a timely manner access material owned by the library
Quality Standards = 95% of materials will be shelved within 20 hours & 97% of materials will be shelved accurately & 97% of items reported missing will be either found or declared missing within 30 minutes of the report (and more and more).

We eventually want to get to the "95% of ....." stage. The words we use to get there I think are up to us.

Posted by at 11:15 AM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

December 5, 2005

Core Competencies for Best Practices
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Best Practices for Background:
• Unravel: IADS managers teach/rove for Unravel I courses; IADS staff have working knowledge of information given in Unravel 1; student staff be familiar with course content or student staff attend Unravel 1 within a certain amount of time.
• Manual/Training: All service points have basic procedures posted (notebook/online); policies documented; units will have online student training information available; units have available and use the student-training module.
• Reference Guide: Glossary of terms common to the Libraries; recommendations of resources to use for the specific libraries (e.g. what indexes work best for SciEng students); definition of service; site-specific troubleshooting guide; on site notebook of information.
• Cross departmental acquaintanceships through some form of manual or guide: FAQ of library services/contacts; known locations of services and contact numbers posted.
• Library orientation that is content oriented: Site tour; tips on where to find for services available.
• Anticipation of FAQs, providing tools up front to deal with them: Combine with the core competencies for Reference Guide

Best Practices for Supervising/Environment
• Review sessions/meetings with students: Email/one-on-one meetings with students on current procedures; need to be held on regular basis; newsletter to students; blog for procedures and responsibility to be read at least once a semester.
• Performance reviews: Write customer service into all job descriptions and standards (both FT and student staff); units conduct one review per semester for student employees.
• Surveys/giving people a way to voice their concerns about their work; Units survey or provide a mechanism for staff to give feedback about their jobs; survey or poll external users once a year; use Libqual.
• List of contacts: Emergency contact numbers (home-cell) for managers; units maintain prioritized call lists
• Meeting the important contacts, such as building managers etc so people have a face, not just a name on a list: Possibly incorporate into section Best Practices for Background; Invite staff from other departments to present to IADS Forum on what their department does/post on IADS Web; provide tours of area or building.
• Motivating Student Workers: Units will provide and create a fun and welcoming (comfortable) working environment.

Best Practices for Functional, or Behaviors
• Approach patrons: Ask “can I help you??; scan service area periodically to see if someone needs help; staff rove service area on regular basis.
• Smile: Change to be a possible core competency for Eye contact/approachability.
• Ask if the patron found everything/if they need additional assistance: Change to be a possible core competency for Approach patrons.
• Eye contact/approachability: Approachability becomes the BP; core competency is eye contact; observes and is aware of the environment.
• Observation and awareness of the environment: Change to a core competency for Approachability.
• Identify confusing concepts for patrons and anticipate their problems with them-provide tools to help deal with this, such as an explanation as to why a procedure is a certain way: Change and rewrite to read Anticipate problems; core competency becomes explain procedures to patron.
• Walk, don’t point when possible: When staffing permits, have one person leave desk and go with patron
• Wear nametags: All staff identified as? Library staff?
• Keep signage accurate and up-to-date: Review once a semester for accuracy; update within a set amount of time
• Try to be consistent through the different libraries, in terms of brochures, signage etc.: Move to section on Best Practices for Supervising/Environment; set and use standard language; use University Libraries visual identity system (e.g. same fonts and layouts).

Posted by at 2:39 PM | Best Practices/Competencies

Category "Best Practices/Competencies"

November 18, 2005

Best Practices Suggestions

Best Practices for Background:
o Unravel
o Manual/Training
o Reference Guide
o Cross departmental acquaintenceship through some form of manual or guide
o Library orientation that is content oriented
o Anticipation of FAQs, providing tools up front to deal with them
Best Practices for Supervising/Environment
o Review sessions/meetings with students
o Performance reviews
o Surveys/giving people a way to voice their concerns about their work
o List of contacts
o Meeting the important contacts, such as building managers etc so people have a face, not just a name on a list
Best Practices for Functional, or Behaviors
o Approach patrons
o Smile
o Ask if the patron found everything/if they need additional assistance
o Eye contact/approachability
o Observation and awareness of the environment
o Identify confusing concepts for patrons and anticipate their problems with them-provide tools to help deal with this, such as an explanation as to why a procedure is a certain way
o Walk, dont point when possible
o Wear nametags
o Keep signage accurate and up-to-date
o Try to be consistent through the different libraries, in terms of brochures, signage etc.
o Respect, interact with patrons as humans, not interruptions
o Appearance expectations, no offensive sayings on T-shirts etc.
o Making commitments, quality standards and keeping them
o Phone protocols
o Handling difficult patrons
o When and where to refer
o Cell phones, and people talking in quiet study areas
o Trouble shooting
o Acknowledging customers who are waiting in line
o Personalize responses
o Prioritizing
o Knowing how to handle photocopier problems

Posted by at 3:53 PM | Best Practices/Competencies