JOURNAL ARTICLE

Realizing what's essential: a case study on integrating electronic journal management into a print-centric technical services department

Daniel M Dollar, John Gallagher, Janis Glover, Regina Kenny Marone, Cynthia Crooker
Journal of the Medical Library Association: JMLA 2007, 95 (2): 147-55
17443247

OBJECTIVE: To support migration from print to electronic resources, the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library at Yale University reorganized its Technical Services Department to focus on managing electronic resources.

METHODS: The library hired consultants to help plan the changes and to present recommendations for integrating electronic resource management into every position. The library task force decided to focus initial efforts on the periodical collection. To free staff time to devote to electronic journals, most of the print subscriptions were switched to online only and new workflows were developed for e-journals.

RESULTS: Staff learned new responsibilities such as activating e-journals, maintaining accurate holdings information in the online public access catalog and e-journals database ("electronic shelf reading"), updating the link resolver knowledgebase, and troubleshooting. All of the serials team members now spend significant amounts of time managing e-journals.

CONCLUSIONS: The serials staff now spends its time managing the materials most important to the library's clientele (e-journals and databases). The team's proactive approach to maintenance work and rapid response to reported problems should improve patrons' experiences using e-journals. The library is taking advantage of new technologies such as an electronic resource management system, and library workflows and procedures will continue to evolve as technology changes.

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