Approved 7/15/98; revised 3/22/00; revised 5/31/00
Currently under revision by LC April 2004
Library Council is the primary administrative body for the WSU Libraries. Its role is to provide leadership in directing the allocation of intellectual and financial resources in support of the Libraries' values, mission, and vision.
The role of Library Council is to:
- Work to create a shared and balanced sense of system-wide library priorities among all Libraries personnel.
- Work continually to improve communications within the Libraries, including identifying issues for discussion
- Disseminate to and collect information from assigned constituencies.
- Constructively represent diverse opinions on discussion items.
- Provide input regarding the ongoing development of strategic priorities, including the application of needed resources.
- Suggest or recommend the establishment of groups and their membership to carry out specific tasks.
- Assist in identifying ways to measure the Libraries' progress toward meeting our goals.
Working Groups are the primary means by which library policies and practices are established and implemented in areas where more than one library unit is responsible for implementing a particular service. Through Working Groups, the Libraries benefit from the shared ideas and expertise of those most familiar with these services.
The role of Working Groups is to:
- Define issues
- Gather information
- Share information
- Solve problems
- Establish common procedures, as appropriate
- Establish policies within the scope of responsibility
- Assess services/activities for efficiency and effectiveness
- Identify and communicate key information and decisions that need to be shared with other library colleagues
- Establish ad hoc task forces as needed
Working Groups will establish procedures and make policy within the scope of their responsibilities. Working Groups are accountable for their decisions and are expected to share decisions with library colleagues using standard procedures for working groups. However, any proposals generated by a Working Group that require funding for implementation must be referred to Library Council for funding approval unless otherwise specified in the individual Working Group description document. Similarly, any proposals with very broad policy implications, will also need Library Council approval.
Some issues may require a Working Group to work collaboratively or meet occasionally with another Working Group to insure that the most effective and appropriate solution is applied to a given problem. Such collaboration and communication can be arranged by the groups themselves.
- Access Services Working Group
- Assessment Working Group
- Cataloging Advisory Working Group
- Circulation Working Group -- DISBANDED 10/27/04
- Collections Working Group --DISBANDED 9-11-02
- Copy Services Working Group --DISBANDED 9-11-02
- Employees Development Working Group --DISBANDED 4-21-04
- Facilities Working Group --DISBANDED 9-11-02
- Government Information Working Group
- Health and Safety Working Group
- Libraries Advancement Working Group --DISBANDED 4-21-04
- Library Instruction/Reference Working Group
- Preservation Working Group
- Resource Sharing Working Group -- DISBANDED 10/27/04
- Serials Working Group
- Systems Advisory Working Group --DISBANDED 9-11-02
- WEB Working Group
Ad hoc task forces may be created by any group and by administrative departments to handle very specific issues within a specified time period, as necessary. Such task forces would report to the group or administrative department that created them. However, before any group or department creates task forces, care must be taken to insure that some existing Working Group is not already addressing the same problem or that the issue does not fall within the purview of an existing group. Some examples of ad hoc task forces might be a National Library Week Task Force and Atrium Music Series Task Force.
All groups meetings are considered "open meetings." As a courtesy, any non-member wishing to attend a group meeting as an observer should notify the chair of that Working Group in advance of the meeting. Similarly, any non-member who wishes to attend a group meeting in order to speak to a particular issue on the agenda, should also notify the chair of that group in advance of the meeting. Any non-member can request that an issue be considered for placement on the agenda by contacting the working group chair.
Minutes should be recorded for all group meetings and distributed promptly. A recorder can be designated by the group for the year or the responsibility can be shared throughout the group. Minutes should be made available within a week of the meeting or in advance of the next meeting, whichever is sooner. Key group decisions must be distributed in an appropriate manner to all library employees.
Groups should spend their time addressing specific items on the agenda. Information sharing should be done via e-mail or memo. Any group member may request that a particular topic, brought to his/her attention as information, be placed on the agenda for further discussion or action.
Group members will be selected through a variety of methods, depending on the group. As a general rule, library employees will be asked to volunteer for these assignments. The Libraries benefit greatly from the ideas and expertise of all our employees. Group work requires time and effort that must be shared by everyone. It is essential that all employees contribute to the group process by volunteering for working groups, task forces, and search committees on a regular basis. Although the branch campus libraries have separate budgets from the Pullman campus and report to their respective campus deans, branch campus librarians may vote for and serve as faculty representatives on Library Council. It is important to have branch campus library faculty and staff represented on working groups and task forces to insure compatible practices and procedures and to foster communication throughout the WSU Libraries.
The chair will be selected by the group for a specified period of time determined by the group.
The chair is responsible for:
- Insuring that the agenda is distributed to all Working Group members ahead of time
- Managing the meeting process
- Communicating key decisions to library employees in a timely fashion
- Archiving the meeting minutes
- Insuring that any non-members be included in meetings when their expertise is needed to complete the work of the group.
Group members are responsible for:
- Attending group meetings
- Preparing ahead of time to address all agenda items
- Bringing the necessary documents to group meetings
- Volunteering to assist with any tasks required by the group to conduct its business and completing its work in a timely fashion
- Serving as the recorder or chair, when necessary
- Assisting the chair in managing the meeting process
- Soliciting feedback from their respective constituencies and sharing information with these constituencies as appropriate
- Implementing standard procedures as determined by the group
- If a group member finds that he/she is unable to attend group meetings on a regular basis or contribute to the work of that group, he/she should resign from the group so that another member, who is able to participate, can be appointed. If a group member fails to attend meetings on a regular basis, does not contribute to the group's work, and does not resign his/her appointment, the group's chair can request that Library Council replace that member.
Modes of group operation
To be effective, it should be clear to all group members that one of the following three modes will be occurring at a given time during the meetings:
- Planning mode: i.e., general idea-sharing for the purpose of eventually devising a policy or recommendation.
- Implementation mode: i.e., designing a course of action to carry out a plan or policy.
- Maintenance mode: i.e., coordinating the details necessary to implement a course of action.
Before any decision is finalized, the group should be sure that no other group or department needs to be consulted, nor that the decision falls within the scope of Library Council and should be forwarded to LC as a proposal.
At the end of each meeting, group members should decide collectively what decisions and information need to be communicated to their library colleagues.
APPROVED BY LIBRARY COUNCIL: 7/15/98; revised 3/22/00; revised 5/31/00