MONTGOMERY COUNTY GOVERNMENT Code No. 1152
ROCKVILLE, MARYLAND Grade 21
DEFINITION OF CLASS:
This is professional librarian work in information services, programming, outreach, collection development and other functions. The main purposes of the work are to assist customers in reader's advisory and to locate information and information resources by leading, retrieving, and delivering and/or lending appropriate information resource materials from the library's collection, to provide programming targeted to specific audiences, to provide outreach and to provide input for collection maintenance and development. The employee typically works at a public services desk (consolidated or single-service) at a library (providing services face-to-face, by telephone and by email), but may work in the Ask-a-Librarian function (which involves telephone and electronic communication with customers, including 'live chat' and other social networking venues) or in another functional area, such as cataloging Information services, programming and outreach require knowledge of library and community resources and reference services in electronic and print media, familiarity with adult and child learning theories and of customer and community wants and needs. The majority of contacts are with customers to assess needs and provide information. An employee in this class typically provides public service and assistance on an on-going basis. Service or assistance typically involves questioning customers to determine the nature of assistance that is required and deciding how to successfully deliver that assistance as well as providing instructions in the use of library reference and electronic tools. Public service also includes providing programs or program modules to various groups and participating in meetings with groups to explain and promote library services.
An employee in this class is responsible for using initiative in carrying out
recurring assignments independently without specific instruction and applying
modern standard librarian principles and practices to the work. The supervisor
assigns regular, recurring work in terms of objectives, priorities and deadlines.
Within this framework, the employee selects methods and plans and carries out
the steps, independently handling deviations according to guidelines and standard
principles and practices. The supervisor typically spot checks completed work
for effectiveness in customer service, quantity, quality, timeliness and adherence
to accepted methods, practices and other standards. Special work may be assigned
with specific guidance and instructions. Employees may seek assistance from
their supervisor for problems not covered by instructions or guides. Guides
include regulations, policies, procedures and standards of library science,
Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL) and other sources, and are normally
applicable to the situations that arise. Employees are expected to plan the
sequence of actions and independently select and apply the right methods or
procedures to the work and may have considerable latitude to exercise independent
judgment in adapting or deviating from these guides based upon knowledge of,
and skills in, librarianship. The work consists of functions involving a variety
of processes and methods. The complexity of the work is marked by 'active listening'
and thoughtful probing to help clarify customer wants/needs, by skill in accessing
and using public access catalogs, Internet resources and a wide range of online
resources, by skill in providing the appropriate information and sources to
customers clearly, concisely and completely, making a referral to another library
or otherwise providing service, such as placing reserves and recommending specific
Inter Library Loan, and by skill in planning and preparing programs for children,
teens or adults by considering wants/needs, content/manner of presentation and
other factors to obtain and maintain audience interest and participation. Complexity
may also include assessing new reference databases or specified parts of various
collections. The impact of properly performed work is realized by customers
in effective information services, programming and outreach or by the effectiveness
of other work (such as cataloging). All of this supports community literacy
through continuous learning development opportunities. Some work on branch and
systemwide committees, projects and initiatives may result in system-wide improvements.
The majority of all work performed by an employee in this class is carried out
in a library to which the public has unrestricted open access, which includes
potential for interpersonal conflict situations and, at times, some potential
for aggressive or unpredictable behavior by customers. The work includes light
physical effort, such as keyboarding, standing or staying in place for sustained
periods and lifting, carrying and/or moving of book tubs, carts and library
books and materials. All positions require the employee to work evenings, nights,
Saturdays and Sundays based on customer service needs.
EXAMPLES OF DUTIES: (Illustrative Only)
Provides information services, including reference and reader's advisory, to meet informational and reading needs of customers by performing research and answering reference questions, directing customers to specific library materials, making referrals to appropriate libraries or other external sources of information and, if possible, facilitating access to such sources.
Leads customers to appropriate information resources. Instructs them in formulating effective search strategies.
Uses public access catalogs, Internet and other electronic databases to locate and provide services, such as placing reserves.
Prepares booklists and pathfinders for use by the public and staff.
Typically specializes in one or more areas, such as Adults, Teens, Virtual Services, Cataloging or Children's Services, which may require some knowledge of adult/child learning theory, early literacy, brain development, English as a Second Language (ESL), etc.
Under direction of the LII, senior staff or Library Manager, plans, presents and evaluates programs or program modules for specialty area(s), age group or other types of audiences considering a range of factors, including own knowledge of literature and resources in one's specialty area(s), community demographics, stated wants/needs of users and user groups, contemporary interests (such as graphic novels for teens), child/adult learning theory, etc.
Under direction of senior staff or Library Manager, performs outreach to the community and outside agencies (such as Montgomery County Public Schools) - provides information about library resources, coordinates programming and presents programs of interest to the audience at schools, senior centers, library support groups, etc.)
In programming/outreach as pertinent to the employee's area(s) of specialization or as needed, prepares and conducts story time, library tours, summer reading club programs, conversation clubs, book discussion groups and multimedia programs for children, teens and adults, holiday, special interest or special theme displays, timely topics, and other informational, educational and promotional or commemorative activities (such as producing and distributing flyers, banners and other materials, including proposed press releases, or creating or coordinating displays and exhibits).
Keeps up-to-date in own specialty area(s) and, generally, with internal, national and local news, political and cultural issues, community issues, technology trends, etc.
Participates in collection maintenance by evaluating materials for currency, condition and rate of circulation, removing outdated, inaccurate, worn or non-circulating items, identifying materials for mending, etc.
Participates in collection development by recommending additions and replacements based on such factors as wants/needs of customers/the community, cultural interests, contemporary interests, 'hot' topics, ease of use, etc.
Assesses new reference databases (trials) or specified parts of various collections.
Attends professional meetings and workshops for professional development, to learn about current library issues, etc. May be a presenter at such events. Stays abreast of changes in MCPL policies and procedures, technology used by MCPL, etc.
Leads or participates on committees, projects and initiatives concerning system-wide issues.
Troubleshoots elementary branch technology problems to meet the needs of customers, as required for effective customer service. If unable to resolve technology problems, refers them to the appropriate staff member.
Assists customers in accessing electronic information.
Performs duties in specialty areas other than assigned area(s) to support efficient operation of the library, for professional development and other reasons. Assumes the duties and responsibilities of senior staff members in their absence, or as assigned.
Instructs co-workers, formally or informally, on the use of new materials, resources, services and equipment.
May train and oversee the work of volunteers and others.
May maintain desk schedule for information staff.
May compile library statistics and prepare reports.
May serve as the library's volunteer program coordinator - recruits, assesses skills/interests of, trains and otherwise coordinates the availability and work of volunteers.
Assists processing staff in linking individual items to appropriate item records in the integrated library system database.
Answers questions from branch libraries about cataloging and processing of materials.
Catalogs materials (adds, edits, transfers and deletes electronic records) system-wide using Anglo-American Cataloging Rules (AACR2), Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) bibliographic standards, Machine-Readable Cataloging (MARC) standards, MCPL cataloging practices and other guides.
As needed, opens or closes the library, as scheduled, following procedures that apply to opening and closing, such as unlocking doors, etc.
Performs related duties as required.
Education: Master's degree in library science from a college or university accredited by the American Library Association.
License/Certification: Employees will be responsible for maintaining appropriate level of Continuing Education Units (CEUs) to sustain licensing.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:
Knowledge of the principles, practices and standards of library science, including the American Library Association (ALA) Code of Ethics, of functions and methods of information classification systems using bibliographic records, of the primary reference databases of MCPL and other databases, of the collection(s) of the library of assignment, of research methods and search strategies to identify information sources and locate needed information, of the Integrated Library System and of MCPL policies and procedures (including quality service standards), of specialized MCPL guidelines pertinent to area(s) of assignment (such as the Children's Core Competencies), of the branch work plan, of core bodies of information needed for programming (such as the wants and needs of the customer base, early childhood learning and literacy and adult literacy), and of social networking and electronic methods of information delivery, all to provide information, programming and/or outreach services and perform other functions.
Knowledge of the library's computers, printers, copiers and other electronic equipment to assist customers. This includes staying abreast of technological changes.
Knowledge of departmental graphic standards to design compliant signs, handouts, exhibits, displays and informational, educational and promotional materials.
Knowledge of bodies of information applying to the assigned program area(s), such as:
Knowledge of Anglo-American Cataloging Rules (AACR2), Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) bibliographic standards, Machine-Readable Cataloging (MARC) standards, MCPL cataloging practices and other guides to meet international standards and local needs in cataloging.
Knowledge of governmental requirements, assistive technologies and related information applying to public library services for people with disabilities to provide services.
Skill in problem solving to select, organize and logically process relevant information (verbal, numerical or abstract) to solve a problem. Examples include skill in using the reference interview to ascertain customer wants/needs, in selecting appropriate sources of information, in using effective search techniques, and in identifying and presenting critical content of exhibits/displays and informational, educational and promotional materials.
Skill in written communication to understand written information (including facts, assertions and arguments), and to express information in writing so that others will understand and, at times, be convinced or persuaded. This includes but is not limited to skill in syntax, grammar, punctuation and spelling to prepare informational, educational and promotional materials, in searching for information, in reviewing books, and in reading and understanding policies, procedures and standards applying to assignments.
Skill in oral communication to understand verbal information (including facts, assertions and arguments) and to express such information verbally so that others will understand. This includes skill in encouraging effective oral communication by others, such as customers seeking information services, in listening actively during the reference interview, and in speaking to groups and in programs.
Interpersonal skills to interact effectively with personal contacts in customer service-oriented, businesslike manner. This includes ability to deal courteously, tactfully and effectively with customers, including, at times, irritated, aggressive or unpredictable people.
Skill in using a computer, software (including specialized databases) and peripherals for various tasks.
Ability and willingness to maintain technical and non-technical currency in a fast-changing environment.
Ability to perform light physical effort.
Ability to work effectively and calmly under pressure.
The probationary period must be 6 months for a full-time or part-time employee appointed to a merit system position, and 6 months for a promoted employee, during which time performance will be carefully evaluated. Continuation in this class will be contingent upon successful completion of the probationary period.
MEDICAL PROTOCOL: Medical History Review
Class Established: August, 1963
Revised: November, 1969
April, 1992 (M)
May, 2011 (M)