Well said. Most librarians have the requisite intelligence to learn
the technical aspects, and it is frustrating for librarians who do
most everything else, such as web work, data management, and data
organization to not be considered for systems librarian positions when
more could be accomplished by having them partner with IT department
for systems training and to problem solve. After all, most legacy
systems librarians that built it did not have IT degrees, they knew
the data and utilized database and MARC record knowledge to start and
built it out as needed. Also, it is not something that can be taught
until you are working with the system in play.
Librarians deserve the opportunity to become system librarians,
especially when candidates are in short supply.
-----------------------------------------From: "Diane Hillmann"
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Friday February 17 2023 10:07:38AM
Subject: Re: [CODE4LIB] Systems - to librarian or not to librarian?
I don't think it should be an either/or. I was a systems librarian
before such beasts were defined, much less recruited. I was trained
bibliographic searcher supporting bibliographers ordering books (no
do those folks exist, really) and transitioned to a cataloger some
later), so I always knew bib data really well. I started my technical
learning, in charge of loading tapes into a NOTIS system and then
supervising authorities work. I think some kind of library
(maybe MLS or equivalent) plus experience in cataloging or
whatever they're called these days) should be sufficient. It's about
data, folks--the technical stuff is much easier to find in the wild
effectively be teamed with a librarian that knows the data.
Librarian (retired, but still sentient)
On Fri, Feb 17, 2023 at 9:41 AM Lynda Howell wrote:
> Our experience has been that Librarian payscales and expectations
> completely different from IT payscales/expectations. We had to
> position to a librarian position and drop a lot of the technical
> requirements in order to get applicants willing to take the job.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Code for Libraries On Behalf Of Martin,
> Sent: Thursday, February 16, 2023 6:25 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: [CODE4LIB] Systems - to librarian or not to librarian?
> We're considering taking our Systems Librarian position and
> requirement for a library degree, making it a technician position
> The job's primary focus is in working with Alma configuration and
> troubleshooting the perennial off-campus access issues. The hope is
> removing the library degree requirement will make recruiting
> past we've had difficulty getting candidates who had both the
> degree and the requisite technical proficiency.
> I am curious to hear from other universities: do you require your
> person to hold a library degree? Why or why not? If you do require
> do you find you have to do extensive technical training with new
> you don't, do you wind up having to train people on library-related
> Either way, how has your approach worked out?
> Will Martin
> Head of Digital Initiatives, Systems and Services
> Chester Fritz Library
> University of North Dakota