Sunday, December 31, 2006

Another year over

This year was an active one for me. It is nice to think back on your accomplishments to see the improvements that you have made.

New Computers
We started this year with 11 Gates computers from the 2001 cycle and 4 thin clients. We also had to sign people up to a computer by clipboard. With a $30,000 Capital Improvement Project from the city, and a $26,400 grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, we have 30 brand new computers with all the works, plus a time management system that signs people up for a computer and kicks them off when their time is up. We also received an additional $12,000 grant from the local Indian Reservation, but those won't be installed until next year.

Automation of Services
Usually automation is nothing to brag about, but if done in the correct way it can improve services and reduce wait times. Our Friends group purchased a new 3M V-1 Self-check unit. It still is not at 80% of our check-out, but we are getting there. We also automated our phone systems to call people for holds and overdue books. This saved a huge amount of staff time and stress. We also automated our inbound services too. Before, people just left a message and whenever a staff person got to it, that book was renewed, now patrons can do it themselves in real time. We also automated the computer sign-up.

Grant Writing
I was able to secure several grants. We were awarded three grants at a total of $75,000 for more computers and a bookmobile.

Public Relations
The library got on the map during our annual report. Our report on our adult literacy accomplishments got the front page of the local paper with an outpouring of tutor support. The local United Way is duplicating our program to our surrounding communities. With a little luck, we will have the same Adult Literacy/ESL program throughout the county. We hit the front page of our local paper three or four times.

I started the city's first adult literacy program in eight years. We will also add an ESL Component and bookmobile services. A recent interview process over the summer identified key needs for Spanish speakers. The resulting change in collections, services, and programs has brought an increase in usage from this population. Something our library has never been able to accomplish.

New Library
We passed our bond and we are already in the process of planning our new library. We will also expand our current facility.

New Databases/Electronic Resources
We have expanded our databases through agreements with the state library, our county consortium, and expanded our own budget. This also includes the purchase of Rosetta Stone that teaches English and Spanish. It does this online and you can do it from home! I revamped our website so that it looks like an actual library information portal. We will be rolling out a host of mobile services using library 2.0 concepts.

We have an increase in circulation, walk-in business, reference questions, database hits, and program attendance. This last June all of our service skyrocketed higher than expected. We have a host of well-behaved teens using our library (middle schoolers too, just not as well-behaved) and even have our own teen group.

AND I started this blog to talk about it all. It has been very cathartic to write about the bad stuff, that didn't work out. It has also emboldened me to try new things and MOST importantly, to brag about myself.

For those who read my blog and subscribe to it, thanks for reading and have a Happy New Year.

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