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>>I’d like to comment since I’m no longer an active cataloger, (passive at best) but now an administrator who has budgetary responsibilities.

>Am I incorrect in thinking that a budget administrator would be interested in something that increases use/access statistics? I have vivid memories of running numerous statistic reports for the quarterly meeting with the budget people in order to justify our funding/staff/general existence.

Usage is a non-starter when it comes to vendor contracts anymore for things such as databases, ejournals, etc.  The subscription costs are usually based on FTE and Carnegie classification—at least in the USA.

How do I measure the ROI on moving off MARC to “X”?  Do I use how happy my catalogers are?  What is the unit to tell me it was well worth the move?  The end-user doesn’t know a hill of beans when the OPAC looks the same, but under the hood was a complete overhaul.  How many internal systems will have to be replaced that depend on the OPAC that stores the data in MARC21 and be changed to accommodate this new format –X?  What do I do if my ILS makes my pay 3X what I just paid for a new “upgraded” software package to replace MARC21 and another component, say my discovery layer which uses MARC21 as part of discovery decided that (1) they will not move off MARC or (2) charge me a higher cost because it isn’t MARC21?

At my current institution, our budgetary considerations are based on one main theme:  student success or student retention.  If I place a request for positions based on standards, research, or back office needs, it is automatically denied.  There isn’t a checkoff on the form for it.  LOL.

So, statistics don’t mean much for me.  My administration asks “How much does this costs, and what is the benefit?  Will it bring more students?  Will they graduate in 4 years or less because of this investment?”  Yes, we can tie some of this together in various ways, but it’s not like saying “without this staff member, I have 1054 less desk hours for Reference Services”  or “without this reference librarian, we will not offer instruction for STEM college”.

Technical service positions are what keeps me awake at night in the personnel arena.  And they should many of you too—since we made this huge move to divest ourselves of technical services over the past 20 years with doing away with catalogers (we can just outsource it—so easy, so wonderful!).  Be careful what you ask for, because when you eradicate certain types of library position types, you may have sleepless nights when you can’t hire a cataloger, an acquisitions librarian, a serials librarian, a systems librarian or anything not related to the student directly.  Everything is under the microscope.

We haven’t, as a community, done very well in quantifying the value of technical service librarians.  We’ve done lots of things to say we can automate them right out the door.

I’m afraid that down the road we may really need Catalogers more than every and we will not (1) be able to get justifications through administrations or (2) there will not be qualified people from Library Science programs since those programs have taken the queue from us in the past and stopped teaching cataloging and other related subjects as a core curriculum.

My $.03 worth of preaching.  I now step away from the Ambo.


Jeffrey Trimble
Co-Interim Library Director
Associate Director &
Head of Information Services
William F.  Maag Library
Youngstown State University
330.941.2483 (Office)
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http://www.maag.ysu.edu
http://digital.maag.ysu.edu
“The spice must flow...."


From: Jamie Sheppard <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>>
Reply-To: Bibliographic Framework Transition Initiative Forum <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>>
Date: Saturday, February 28, 2015 at 4:50 PM
To: Bibliographic Framework Transition Initiative Forum <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>>
Subject: Re: [BIBFRAME] A rant?

>I’d like to comment since I’m no longer an active cataloger, (passive at best) but now an administrator who has budgetary responsibilities.

Am I incorrect in thinking that a budget administrator would be interested in something that increases use/access statistics? I have vivid memories of running numerous statistic reports for the quarterly meeting with the budget people in order to justify our funding/staff/general existence.

JPS

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