Library Assistant (Public Services – Interlibrary Loans)
JD #: JD1103
Health Sciences Library
The Health Sciences Library is one of McMaster University’s four libraries. Our vision is that “Our users will have the skills, support and resources required to access the information they need.” The library offers information services, resources and expertise in support of the university’s commitment to knowledge-based health care practice and life-long learning.
Responsible for providing a variety of services to users and education programs including research help, circulation and reserve, interlibrary loans, collection maintenance, and the safe keeping of library resources. Requires a thorough knowledge of library policies, procedures and systems. Serve in Public Services on the service desk. Responsible for providing interlibrary loans and document delivery services which requires requesting, receiving, and distributing resources to and from other libraries.
Purpose and Key Functions:
- Provide interlibrary loans service to students, staff and faculty at the University and from libraries outside of the McMaster community which requires requesting, receiving, and distributing resources to and from other libraries.
- Locate and obtain requested materials and inform patrons of alternative sources of information, as required.
- Respond to requests from other libraries regarding the borrowing and lending of library materials.
- Review all requests to borrow and lend library material and coordinate the workflow to accommodate these requests.
- Maintain accurate financial, patron, and processing records for all interlibrary loans materials.
- Produce invoices related to interlibrary loans charges including fines and replacement book costs.
- Monitor and track statements and participate in the reconciliation of accounts.
- Investigate and resolve patron complaints including, but not limited to, logon failures, cancellation requests, lost materials, charges, and payment method.
- Record, and collate data for interlibrary loan transactions.
- Act as the first point of contact for users of all types. Answer or redirect general inquiries in person, by telephone and via email and responds independently to inquiries that are specific in nature and require a thorough knowledge of established policies and procedures.
- Provide in-depth research help by interpreting patron requests for research materials and finding solutions to their research needs by constructing complex search queries of various online systems and networks.
- Advise patrons on how to search, locate, and retrieve information from various library databases.
- Refer requests to appropriate internal and external sources and offer alternatives as required.
- Extract, interpret, and integrate information from a wide variety of traditional and non-traditional resources.
- Search online databases to identify and determine the correct bibliographic entries for research materials.
- Interpret bibliographic references to determine if the library owns the specific materials, where the items are located in the library system or on the internet, and whether or not they are available for loan.
- Provide circulation, reserve, and interlibrary loan services.
- Explain departmental policies and procedures to patrons and enforce them when necessary.
- Update and maintain knowledge of the operational and administrative processes related to the functions of departmental and library-wide policies and procedures.
- Make decisions and recommendations in situations where no established policy or procedure exists but there has been a past-practice or precedent set which can be referred to.
- Apply an understanding of the broader context and philosophy of both the library and the University to serve patron needs.
- Determine eligibility for borrower cards for non-University users based on established policies.
- Maintain accurate system records for patrons and materials circulating in the library system.
- Process routine check-in and check-out of library materials and equipment including, but not limited to, scanning and sending documents, packaging items, and attaching book bands.
- Compose general and email correspondence when communicating with users, staff and faculty, as well as local, national and international institutions, to follow up on information requests.
- Exchange library system and procedure information with colleagues and users.
- Collect payments for borrower cards, fines, and replacement charge.
- Shelve library materials and maintain condition of library collections.
- Adapt to incremental changes to library technology and knowledge base.
- Assist patrons with the use of printers and photocopiers in the library and report systems and mechanical problems to the appropriate area.
- Write a variety of documents, formal notes and records including, but not limited to, correspondence, procedure manuals and incident reports.
- Assist patrons with problems in accessing resources and report systems problems to the appropriate department
- Responsible for ensuring coverage for absences by referring to an on-call schedule and contacting the next available employee.
- Follow standard procedures to assist patrons in difficult situations by referring them to Security Services.
- Follow standard procedures for responding to security alarms at exits.
- Responsible for unlocking and opening the library, and for patrolling the library prior to closing with the assistance of Security Services, when available, to ensure all patrons have exited prior to locking the facility.
- Ensure adherence to quality standards and procedures for work-study employees and casual employees.
- Provide orientation and show procedures to others.
- Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field of study.
- 2 year Community College diploma in Library and Information Technology.
- Requires 3 years of relevant experience, including two years for the completion of a diploma in Library and Information Technology.
The following would be considered assets:
- Experience with Interlibrary loans systems, e.g. VDX, DocLine
- Experience collecting, verifying and inputting data into a variety of spreadsheets and databases
The successful candidate will possess the following:
- Excellent interpersonal, communication and problem solving skills
- Excellent customer service skills
- Excellent computer skills
- Proven ability to pay close attention to detail and to work with accuracy
- Knowledge and experience in providing library reference and circulation services in health sciences
- Knowledge and experience in health sciences
- Searching skills relating to health databases and health literature
- One-to-one teaching skills
- Ability to work both independently and as part of a team, in a fast paced environment
- Experience working with university/library policies and procedures
- Experience writing, formatting, editing and proofreading a variety of documents, such as correspondence and reports
- Experience applying standard mathematical skills such as calculations, formulas, and equations
How To Apply
To apply for this job, please submit your application online, here: https://careers.mcmaster.ca/psp/prepprd/EMPLOYEE/HRMS/c/HRS_HRAM.HRS_APP_SCHJOB.GBL?Page=HRS_APP_JBPST&Action=U&FOCUS=Applicant&SiteId=1001&JobOpeningId=17195&PostingSeq=1
Employment Equity Statement
In keeping with its Statement on Building an Inclusive Community with a Shared Purpose, McMaster University strives to embody the values of respect, collaboration and diversity, and has a strong commitment to employment equity. The diversity of our workforce is at the core of our innovation and creativity and strengthens our research and teaching excellence. The University seeks qualified candidates who share our commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion. While all qualified candidates are invited to apply, we particularly welcome applications from women, persons with disabilities, First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples, members of visible minorities, and LGBTQ+ persons. Job applicants requiring accommodation to participate in the hiring process should contact the Human Resources Service Centre at 905-525-9140 ext. 222-HR (22247) or the Faculty of Health Sciences Human Resources office at ext. 22207 to communicate accommodation needs.