Reference Division Staff Meeting Notes
From September 23, 2011 - Nancy Huling
New students were introduced (if at the meeting) and announced if not able to be present. We celebrated, through clapping and cheering, the anniversary of Adam’s 25th year with the UW Libraries, and we admired the clock he’d selected.
Nancy said that it is no longer easy to know who is gone when. We had several instances this summer where far more people were away than at work, and even though it was interim, that presented challenges in staffing desks and chat. It also made it hard for people who wanted to work from home to see what the staffing was like prior to making that decision. The group was asked for ideas: create yet another MM calendar? Paper calendar? Other?
The suggestion was made to create a Vacation Calendar in our Staffweb space. This would make it easy for all of us to see who is away, and can be viewed remotely (unlike shared docs). Steph volunteered to mock up a calendar.
Weekend Reference Desk Roles
As the fall quarter approaches, Nancy reviewed the roles of those staffing the Reference Desk on weekends. The continuing increase in questions coming through email and chat really necessitates checking QuestionPoint seven days a week. Dottie typically does this on Saturday and Sunday, but is sometimes away (and really shouldn’t have to check 7 days a week!). People at the meeting are willing to login and check throughout the day, assigning questions where possible, answering questions, and reading chat transcripts to determine if follow-up is needed. As time goes on, our students can also take on more of this responsibility. We will schedule some identical sessions to review answering and referring in QuestionPoint. Until you have been trained, there is no need to check on weekends, but if you are comfortable doing so, please jump in.
The other major role on weekends (in addition to the obvious one of answering user questions!) is mentoring the graduate student assistants. Alyssa is returning for her second year, but may have questions. Eli Rood and Sharde Mills are new. Please be your usual welcoming selves and spend time talking either about questions or categories of questions that we receive regularly, or about your own subject area. Eli and Sharde have been encouraged to ask questions.
DeskTracker and the READ Scale
The Reference Desk Services Task Force was interested in incorporating the READ Scale into the DeskTracker reference desk survey. Discussion ensued on whether or not this should proceed, what it would achieve, and how to integrate it. Many useful suggestions were put forth, resulting in the creation of a streamlined form that will be implemented before classes start.