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Building a Successful Customer-service Culture: A Guide for Library and Information Managers



As libraries move into the 21st century, quality management has become a key focus of the effort to create a service culture that meets - and indeed exceeds - customer requirements. The language of customer service has become common in the library and information sector, as have many of the techniques associated with the provision of customer-focused services. However, there is a danger that customer service may be seen as a 'bolt on' to existing core provision in the form of feedback mechanisms, information leaflets and customer-training sessions. One of the challenges facing managers is to go beyond the acknowledgement of the importance of a customer focus, and to develop an understanding of how this focus can be embedded in the culture of their services via strategic and operational management. This new management guide addresses this challenge. Contributed by LIS professionals with extensive experience in the management of public and academic services, each chapter presents a good practice guide to an element of strategic or operational management with the customer placed at centre stage: • the users' perspective; • planning and policy making; • leadership and management; • human resource planning; • marketing as a tool for LIS managers; • assuring quality; • planning buildings for customers and services; • developing a service culture through partnerships; • virtual service. Readership: This book is essential reading for managers of library and information services from senior to team managers, and also for all those involved in devising strategy and policy for staff and service development. It is relevant to libraries and information services in any area of the world.
1. The users' perspective: a personal view - Graham Matthews 2. Planning and policy making - Sheila Corrall 3. Leadership and management - Robert Gent and Grace Kempster 4. Human resource planning - John M. Pluse and Alix Craven 5. Keeping focused on our customers: marketing as a tool for library and information managers - Christopher West 6. Assuring quality - Bill Macnaught and Mary Fleming 7. Planning academic library buildings for customers and services - Professor Andrew McDonald 8. Developing a service culture through partnerships - Maxine Melling and Joyce Little 9. Virtual service - R. David Lankes.

Maxine Melling BA DipLib Mlib MCLIP is Director of Learning and Information Services at Liverpool John Moores University.
Joyce Little BA MBA MCLIP is Head of Libraries and Information Services at Liverpool City Council.

"Presented in a highly readable, yet informative style, this book aims to present good practice in terms of customer service. This is achieved with good management advice which focuses not only on the importance of existing customer involvement, but that of the potential customer as well."

Library Review

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