Ongoing skill development is vital for library organizations. However, access to professional development opportunities can vary across branches, departments, or staff categories. This inconsistency may result from budgetary limitations, time constraints, or availability issues.
Access to training is often linked to travel and workshops available a few times per year on the conference calendar. This makes it difficult for organizations to fund training for everyone during budget constraints and inflation equitably.
Conference calendars are set up months or years in advance. This can delay access to professional development opportunities needed to meet new patron requests and expectations. Patrons can’t always wait until a workshop becomes available, which risks the library’s ability to fulfill its mission.
Few supervisors have time or have been trained to develop customized learning plans for each staff member, leaving many staff to identify appropriate training opportunities amidst the many events and webinars offered around the library community each day. Instead, the time that could be spent training is lost on searching for training.
With Skilltype, library staff can identify their current skills and areas they wish to learn. They can also view the skills their library organization requires through Skilltype’s individual and library skill profiles. This approach removes guesswork from training, centering on staff motivations and library needs.
Based on staff interests and library needs, personalized training recommendations are delivered to staff each week through Skilltype. When staff have an hour for development, high-quality resources are waiting for them so they can spend their time training instead of searching. Any staff member can access professional development resources in the flow of their workday at any time new skills are needed.
Staff who may not be able to travel for training due to the nature of their work or other factors have access to Skilltype’s centralized index of more than 11,000 library-focused on-demand training resources, enabling each staff member to learn in the flow of work. Skilltype’s index of training covers the skills in demand by libraries and library employees today, whether they are focused on circulation, data management, instruction, metadata, reference, or IT from trusted library conferences and training providers like ACRL, the Charleston Conference, CNI, Library Juice Academy and more.
Libraries producing in-house training resources can link them to Skilltype’s standardized skills vocabulary. This way, these resources can be recommended to staff when needed, alongside Skilltype’s centralized training index. Consequently, it increases the visibility of existing training resources.
Decoupling travel and training can make professional development more inclusive and relevant while closing skill gaps more quickly for libraries or individuals.