Tuesday, 13th November 2012
It continues to be clear that information professionals bring valuable skills and services to our users in a variety of ways. But should we try to be all things to all people - or do a few things really well? The question continues to plague us, and also continues to offer us flexibility and opportunity.
Back in September I (half-jokingly) suggested we don our superhero capes – because it was, and continues to be, clear to me that we bring valuable skills and services to our users in a variety of ways. We’re more than just gatekeepers to information, and these articles bring forth some applications for our skills.
First, James Mullan looks at SharePoint, this time from the perspective of law librarians. Referring to an AALL/ILTA white paper, James looks at the part law librarians play within an organisation – namely that law librarians should be "agents for change and challenge themselves to think beyond their current skill sets". (I can almost hear the rustle of capes.) Considering the amount of additional staff that the author of the white paper feels is necessary to oversee the effective deployment of SharePoint – including a KM developer, a junior web developer, an application developer, a systems administrator and a data steward – there is no shortage of ways that information professionals can help SharePoint be more valuable in the organisation.
Outside of SharePoint, law librarians and information professionals within law firms have a variety of roles - understanding how to create, record and store information effectively; capturing knowledge that is being generated within the organisation; distributing and making information accessible and promoting information sharing, among others.
On the mobile front, James also looks at Corporate Owned, Personally Enabled (COPE) policies – an emerging aspect of BYOD where the organisation provides the smart device and the employee is allowed to install their own programs and apps for access. Both COPE and BYOD are emerging areas of play for information professionals.
So many areas where we could get involved. Yet as Lee Rainie, speaking at the Internet Librarian Conference in Monterey (USA), put forth, the “meta-question” that many information professionals and organisations are struggling with is: should we try to be all things to all people - or do a few things really well? If the latter – what are those few things?
I think the question continues to plague us, and also continues to offer us flexibility and opportunity. If we have to choose – and at some point, we do have to choose – where is it that we would put our focus and our skills?
As always, I welcome your comments.
Related Subscription Articles:
Document the value chain, and transform the way you think about, manage and report on your product portfolio and your information service contributions to your organisation goals.
Focus on Value Chain
Director of Research Robin Neidorf describes the benefits of a Consulting Pilot on Value Chain, to tailor this process to your needs and environment:
View on Vimeo
Consulting Pilot on Value Chain
Our proven processes, resources and guidance will help your team make the shift from transaction centre to strategic asset.
Designed around the most common challenges and pain points for time- and resource-strapped information teams
Supercharge remote productivity and value
Holistic content portfolio management
Future-proof your information service
A tailored overview of our research and active discussion with your Jinfo analyst.
Measure your starting point to articulate your strengths and set priorities for future improvements. Assessments gauge risk, capacity, value and more.
Read case studies, and start the conversation:
Connect your team with the practical tools, original research and expertise to build and support information strategy in your organisation.
A Jinfo Subscription gives access to all Content (articles, reports, webinars) and Community.