Alden Library to Repurpose Service Desk Space – OHIO University Libraries

Alden Library to Repurpose Service Desk Space

The third floor service desk has been removed, but the second and fourth floor desks will remain open. OHIO Libraries is streamlining its service model to adapt to an increasing demand in digital resources. (John Michael Simpson/ Ohio University Libraries)
The third floor service desk has been removed, but the second and fourth floor desks will remain open. OHIO Libraries is streamlining its service model to adapt to an increasing demand in digital resources. (John Michael Simpson/ Ohio University Libraries)

Alden Library is launching a new service model to better utilize both library space and staff members.

The service desks on the first and third floors of the Library were removed over the summer, and those areas will be repurposed. The desks on the second and fourth floors will remain staffed.

Even with the removal of the service desks, patrons will be able to seek assistance from librarians quickly and conveniently.

Texting 740-231-3222 will reach a librarian who can answer a question or meet face-to-face. There will be a librarian on shift every weekday afternoon who will be assigned to be dispatched around the building.

Service desks on the second and fourth floors will also be staffed when those floors are open, and librarians can be reached online through the Chat with a Librarian service. Subject librarians who are experts in their fields accept appointments online and can meet to discuss patrons’ research needs or interests.

“Even though we do have 2 million people in the Library every year, we know that a lot of people are doing their research outside of the Library,” said Kelly Broughton, the Libraries’ assistant dean for research and education services. “We’re trying to emphasize that you can get in contact with your librarian no matter where you are.”

The former third floor service desk area will be converted into a media space with Mac computers, scanners and a whiteboard wall. The Library is seeking feedback about possible resources that could benefit the OHIO community as they interact with the Libraries’ extensive fine arts collection.

The Library will also soon have a new space for patrons to view books and artifacts from the Hwa-Wei Lee Center for International Collections, which is especially renowned for its materials from and about Southeast Asia.

“They’re beautiful books, they’re wonderful, and right now we display them by putting them out flat on tables,” Broughton said. “We’ll have some display spaces for new books as well as cases for the artifacts.”

The Libraries’ new service model will give the community the opportunity to utilize both digital and tangible resources while still receiving valuable help from library staff.

For more information or to provide feedback, please contact Kelly Broughton.