My day on the Issue Desk

A fun post this I think.

This week, my library assistant is on leave and for the most part I have had cover – be it our student volunteers or the information assistant from the larger team. Today however, it was just me all day. I often cover parts of the day i.e. lunches or early finishes, and am on hand for advanced queries, but very rarely am I #sololibrarian. It was really enjoyable! Here are some of my thoughts gathered throughout the day:

  • Saturdays on the issue desk do not really count. An in-house library service open when 99% of staff are not in work… Opportunity to catch up though.
  • Decided to forgo any type social media today. Think it looks unprofessional (especially Facebook) when on front desk
  • 1st thought – accessing desktop from any computer doesn’t really work. Not good…
  • I really enjoy aspects of front desking. It reminds me of less-stressful time. But then when answering queries, I’m not doing my work L
  • I hated it when it used to happen to me, but am finding lots of little things that are not being done right, which lead to a larger issue by the end of the week. Though, as I was told back in the day ‘If you did it right in the first place…’
  • Find myself coming up with new ideas on how to improve day to day activities and processes rather than getting my work done in spare moments. For example, what if all the basic metadata for yet-to-be catalogued books was entered in downtimes…
  • There is a definite difference in how library assistant and I approach work what is best for me (assistant) vs. what is best for all (me). I wonder if I always approached work like this or is it just a sign of me professionally maturing?
  • Picked up between 11 & 2. Good.
  • Student just has to be convinced that there was such a thing as ‘February 29th. If she ever treats me in whatever health-field she ends up in, I’m walking out.
  • A lot of new users in today. I think Bolton University must be doing a health promotion module in one of the health courses. If only we had some sort of connection. Oh wait…
  • Seems the library assistant forges strong opinions in people. Some are visibly (or audibly) disappointed he’s not in. Others very much less so. All I shall say is, no-one tries as much as he does.
  • Why don’t health courses promote NHS Evidence? Sell it as companion to your resources. Shown it to 3 different students (one doing HP module, one doing dissertation on obesity perceptions, one doing nursing course) all really impressed with it.
  • I work better on my own. Now if everyone just emailed there questions and requests…

Overall a good day. I actually got a lot of ‘my’ work done as well as all the typical library assistant stuff. I think the ‘old-school’ busy actually pushed me rather than held me back.


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