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Coverage *was* needed on Wed., 10/03! Ellison, Alicia (04 Oct 2019 08:41 EDT)
RE: Coverage *was* needed on Wed., 10/03! Lauri Rebar (04 Oct 2019 11:44 EDT)
RE: Coverage *was* needed on Wed., 10/03! Ellison, Alicia (04 Oct 2019 11:53 EDT)

RE: Coverage *was* needed on Wed., 10/03! Ellison, Alicia 04 Oct 2019 11:53 EDT

Thank you, Laurie - you are a great friend and colleague - as is my fellow HCC librarian, Karen Dufraine, who shared her yesterday's experience with me. I'm cc'ing Karen so that I can introduce you to each other :-) and she can read your comments and know that we are in good company in terms of our experiences on AAL!
Thanks again.
XXX
-Alicia

-----Original Message-----
From: Lauri Rebar <lrebar@fau.edu>
Sent: Friday, October 4, 2019 11:44 AM
To: Ellison, Alicia <aellison@hccfl.edu>; 'askref@askref.simplelists.com' <askref@askref.simplelists.com>
Subject: RE: Coverage *was* needed on Wed., 10/03!

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Hi Alicia,

This are all great points. Please have your colleague feel free to contact me too if assistance is needed. I'm happy to help out when I can.

We definitely have to work altogether in order for AAL to work and feel free to let others know of the moment-by-moment needs on AAL. I have had some students who cancelled their AAL chat with me when they understood that I was not their campus librarian, even though I told them that I can assist them and have access to their online resources.

I make a point of telling students in the instructional sessions I teach about what a wonderful service AAL is and how to access it, but also tell them about the staffing by Florida librarians (not just my institution) so that they do not have incorrect expectations when they log into AAL for assistance.

Thanks for taking the time to bring this out for all of us to discuss and consider.

Best regards,

Lauri

Lauri C. Rebar, MLIS, M.Ed.
Associate University Librarian, Instruction and Engagement Services Department Florida Atlantic University '76, '19 Wimberly Library, 777 Glades Road, LY-151, Boca Raton, FL 33431
Phone:  561-297-2902
eMail:    LRebar@fau.edu
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-----Original Message-----
From: askref@askref.simplelists.com <askref@askref.simplelists.com> On Behalf Of Ellison, Alicia
Sent: Friday, October 4, 2019 8:42 AM
To: 'askref@askref.simplelists.com' <askref@askref.simplelists.com>
Subject: [askref] Coverage *was* needed on Wed., 10/03!

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Hello!

I just heard from a fellow librarian at my school who staffed the Academic desk for HCC's shift yesterday, from 3-4pm. She was swamped for the whole hour and was alone answering questions. She asked what she can do in future when this happens.

I suggested the following to my colleague:

*         Email Kelly, the AAL help desk, and me.

o   If I'm available, I can either jump on or send an S.O.S. to the list.

?  We HCC faculty librarians are all peers. I don't feel like I should nag everyone to subscribe to this list and have to deal with all the extra email flowing in.

But this kind of thing is a problem. It's bad for the morale of the librarian who has to endure the problem, and of course it is bad for the patrons who aren't getting the best service. So, I wanted to report are right now as we respond to an S.O.S. for next Tuesday.

General suggestions:

*         The obvious one is that we need to be mindful of our shifts and ask for help if we'll be unable to cover.

*         A disclaimer (on the patron dashboard and/or the page where the patron enters the question) indicating that AAL is a statewide service and a Florida librarian will answer.

o   What I really would like them to know is that, contrary to what they (understandably) expect, they are not necessarily dealing with a librarian at their institution even though the widget is on their institution's website!

?  There are subtle messages here and there in the AAL web presence that indicate a "Florida librarian" will answer. I think that's too subtle.

*         A further disclaimer that the service is staffed by volunteers.

o   What I'm getting at here is that patrons expect an experience similar to chatting with corporations, online stores, etc. We are not that!

*         If such disclaimers are not possible or correct to display within the AAL web presence, then...

o   ...suggest canned scripts that communicate these points.

Thanks,
-Alicia

Alicia Ellison
Librarian Professor
Dale Mabry Campus
Hillsborough Community College
4001 W Tampa Bay Blvd, Tampa, FL 33614
office 813.253.7380 |  fax 813.253.7400
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