This session describes the design and implementation of an Information Services Development Program for public services staff at McMaster’s Health Sciences Library. The library’s new Information Service Model cast circulation and interlibrary loan staff as the first point-of-contact for unscheduled information transactions, increasing this group’s responsibility for providing high-quality research help.
To prepare for this transition, an internal training group designed a staff development program based on core competencies intended to deepen organizational knowledge, enhance reference services skills, and increase confidence amongst public services staff. Adopting a multi-faceted approach that included shadowing at the Information Desk, training sessions, and one-on-one mentorship, the development program effectively integrated the theoretical foundations of information service with the practical skills necessary to meet the unique needs of our users.
The group will outline the processes, successes, and challenges of creating and implementing such a program, while demonstrating key resources developed to support staff learning.
– Tips and best practices for designing your own staff development programs.
– Strategies for keeping staff morale high during a high-pressure transitional period.
– Examples of specific learning objects for improving information skills in staff.