Day in the life of… a Serials Librarian

My main duty as Serials Librarian is to manage the acquisition of print and electronic serials and standing orders across all of our 8 library sites, currently we have just over 1300 active subscriptions.  This involves processing new orders, cancellations and renewals  and liaising with our main suppliers such as Swets and Coutts with these instructions.

A typical day for me starts with checking my calendar to see what commitments I have for that day, am I on the enquiry desk? do I have any meetings to go to? I’ll then check the shared mailbox to see what emails have come from SWETS to see if there is anything I need to action or follow-up, for example, invoice payments or a journal may have ceased / changed title. I then check my own work email to see if I have any emails from LLR staff or our other suppliers; these could be queries about the non-supply of journals, access queries, updates needed to the catalogue, price queries for new titles.  I would like to achieve #inboxzero but I think will remain a dream… I then create task list for the day based on the emails I have and any commitments I need to attend.

A lot of my role is administrative so a couple of hours will involve processing journal invoices, entering these on Alto and passing them for payment, keeping our spreadsheet of active journals up-to-date, running reports about fund spend, updating the catalogue and so on . An hour on the enquiry desk would finish the morning off. As we are a multi-disciplinary site students can come with varied  subject queries and will want to be shown how to use the catalogue or how to search different databases.

After lunch I would do some prep for a meeting later on the afternoon. I represent the e-library team at various LLR committees including the Learning & Development group, Social Media group and Kenrick campus marketing team. A lot of the meetings I am attending at the moment, however, are in relation to updating serials procedures and providing training to staff on these updates. This is partly come out of the work that has been done on process mapping, they’ve not been reviewed for some time, but also to help prepare for when I break up for maternity leave (23 days and not counting…).

Aside from any formal meetings I attend I will also have catch-up with the Serials Library Assistant, usually a couple of times a week, as they based within Technical Services and this allows me to keep up-to-date with the day-to-day running of serials at Kenrick Library.

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