Employment & Work Stories

Librarians to be Replaced by 'Smart Technologies'?

Buried in this article from the Albuquerque Tribune Online about a predicted future labor shortage is the following claim:
"The work of the bank teller, auditor, paralegal, or librarian can be increasingly substituted with smart technologies."
Overall, it's a pretty interesting piece and encourages employers to treat their employees better, to develop higher retention rates.

Some managers are better than others...

Grumpy Librarian writes "The managers at Cedar Rapids Library paid for staff massages recently, according to a brief blurb from TheIowaChannel.com.


Time to renegotiate our contracts!"

Search is on for bigger staff as system expands

Bob Cox was first in with Good News out of Florida, where the race is on to find staff for a new Main Library twice the size of the one it will replace, plus finding employees for six new and 12 renovated libraries in Jacksonville.

The human resources manager for the Jacksonville Public Library has to find 135 new employees to help staff libraries where construction is set to finish in the next year. Library records show 52 of those positions are for professional librarians, which means at least a master's degree is required.

There isn't a local program to educate librarians, however, so the majority of Moser's searching happens outside the city.

Federal Grants to Off-set Critical National Shortage of Librarians due to Retirement

Lee Hadden notes, In May 2000, Library Journal magazine reported 40% of America's library directors plan to retire in 9 years or less. And, according to the July 2000 Monthly Labor Review, in 1998 57% of professional librarians were age 45 or older. The March 2002 issue of American Libraries magazine showed that based on 1990 Census data almost 58% of professional librarians will reach the age of 65 between 2005 and 2019.
This all seems like great news to me! It'll be so easy to find new a job when I'm ready, but for some reason, The IMLS Disagrees, and On January 9, 2002, First Lady Laura Bush announced the President would support a new $10 million initiative within the Institute of Museum and Library Services to recruit new librarians and help off-set a critical national shortage of these indispensable professionals and educators.
You dang kids have it so easy now, why, when I was your age...

IMLS awards $10 mil in grants to bring in new librarians

I grabbed this item from the STS-L listserv this morning. The Institute of Museum and Library Services has awarded $10 million to 27 grant projects (listed here by state) aimed at recruiting and educating librarians to offset an expected shortage.

In May 2000, Library Journal magazine reported 40% of America's library directors plan to retire in 9 years or less. And, according to the July 2000 Monthly Labor Review, in 1998 57% of professional librarians were age 45 or older. The March 2002 issue of American Libraries magazine showed that based on 1990 Census data almost 58% of professional librarians will reach the age of 65 between 2005 and 2019.

[On a personal note, my library school, The College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, MN, will be one of the recipients.]

Career Journal reports rising needs for corporate librarians

Both Darci Chapman and Katie have been reading Career Journal:

Corporate librarians are seeing demand for their services increase from last year's rock-bottom levels.

As 2003 has progressed, recruiters say they've been filling more openings for mid- to upper-level corporate librarians than in 2002, when headcounts in corporate information centers were being reduced. Some of the hiring is for librarians to work in such industries as biotechnology that weren't badly hurt by the recession. Other librarians are being recruited to replace staff members who were laid off to cut costs during the downturn.

The Chronicle of Higher Education Looks At Librarianship

2 articles over at Chronicle.com take a peak at being a librarian.
Becoming a Librarian, by Todd Gilman, the librarian for literature in English at Yale University's Sterling Memorial Library. After years of fruitless hunting for a faculty job, an English Ph.D. finds his niche.

Turning Ph.D.'s into Librarians, by Mary Dillon Johnson, who has a Ph.D. in English from the University of California at Berkeley, is director of graduate-career services at Yale University's Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. A new fellowship program opens an alternate route to careers in academic libraries.
NOTE: Both articles require a subscription.

Group calls for removal of 2 library executives

Bob Cox spotted News Out Of Atlanta where An advocacy group for Fulton taxpayers, angry they could be forced to pay a $17 million reverse discrimination judgment against the county's library board, is threatening to file a lawsuit to force the dismissal of the library's director and a board member.

The Fulton County Taxpayers Association, which represents 28,000 taxpayers, is demanding the county fire chief librarian Mary Kaye Hooker and dismiss William McClure from the library board. The group plans to file a lawsuit this month if the county doesn't take action.

Library injuries remain mystery

Bob Cox shares with us a Story Out Of California on The growing problem of library-worker injuries is a mystery worthy of Sherlock Holmes. And an expensive one, having cost taxpayers $360,000 in medical settlements.

Last year, a record 17 employees at the 10-branch city-county system reported on-the-job injuries such as arm pain and loss of feeling in their hands.

Though the repetitive nature of various aspects of the work is believed to be a primary cause of the injuries, library officials can’t explain the recent increase.

"It’s really complex," said Richard Eberley, who is in charge of circulation. "It’s not one thing."

Hiring Preferences in Libraries

Darci Chapman writes "The preliminary results of a survey titled, "Hiring Preferences in Libraries: Perceptions of MLS graduates with online degrees" are available.

You can take the survey here."

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