Thursday, May 27, 2010

And today's controversy is ....

... is buying books a core function of a one-person library Librarian? And if so, should it be done during work hours? And if a 35% discount is available for purchases made "in person", should that purchasing be done during work hours if the preferred supplier is off-site and does not provide an online purchasing facility?

Until the last few weeks I would have said yes to all the above. Yes, book buying is a core function. Yes, it should be conducted in work hours. Yes, a 35% discount is well worth the "transfer of duties" to the off-site supplier.

Anyways, seems that a particular "site manager" does not completely agree. "Adequate notice" must be given. What is "adequate"? 24 hours? 48 hours? 3 weeks? This particular - and seemingly quite reasonable - question is not able to be answered without yet another meeting.

Oh, and the library in question being a school library, let's not forget that the daily routine can change from day to day. Which leaves the question of "how much notice" is "adequate" a somewhat moot point. Factors such as weather, excursions, exams, etc mean that a suitable opportunity may unexpectedly occur at little or no notice for book reviewing, purchasing, customer/reader input, publishing advisory services, etc.

But what would a multi-certified professional librarian know? Right?


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