2004 State of the Libraries Feedback Survey Summary Report
We gathered feedback on the 2004 State of the Libraries using an online survey that was available for
respondents for two weeks following this year's State of the Libraries (November 3, 2004). About 47%
of the participants took the survey.
We asked four questions:
- What did you like best about the program;
- What did you NOT like about the program, physical arrangements, etc.;
- What would you like to see/experience in the 2005 State of the Libraries; and
- What location would you prefer-Livingston campus, Busch campus?
In answering each of the questions, there seemed to be three themes: the digital and analog showcase;
the formal program; and the networking/socializing opportunities. These themes weave through the
answers to each of the questions [excluding the last that merely asked preference of place].
(1) What Did You Like Best about the Program?
- Liked having both digital and analog projects
- Opportunities to talk with presenters and learn more
- Great variety, very informative
- Liked separate from program room, enjoyed playing with a variety of library projects before the "show" began
- Needed more time and more room for the showcase
- Liked speaking directly to people about the projects-got more than might have from a presentation.
- Felt more comfortable going up to individual presenters and engaging them in demos and conversations…wasn't overwhelmed by this tradeshow-style setup where I didn't know where to begin.
- Liked separation of food and demos from the formal program
- Informative, gives sense of direction for libraries
- Described what faculty and library administration plans for future of library system.
- Liked the room [except for limited access for biology breaks]
- Great to see library staff present at formal presentation.
- Liked the five short reports from Jim Niessen, Jeanne Boyle, Libby Hart and Katie Anderson, Julia Zapcic, and Marianne Gaunt.
- Liked discussion from varied contributors.
- Liked strategic planning initiative presentation with Marianne tying in RUL with University's goals.
- Stadium seating made it easy to see speakers.
- Nice mix of faculty/staff accomplishments from various campuses. Nice program altogether.
- Ability to get some work done before program with networking with people I don't often see
- Liked location and separate rooms for eating/mingling, viewing exhibits
- It was all about us!
- Talking with other librarians, especially if I don't see them regularly
- Opportunity to see the new happening throughout the library system…to be able to meet and greet old friends and make new ones.
- My first State of the Libraries and I liked the fact that it is an opportunity to showcase the year's projects and get together with co-workers.
(2) What did you NOT like about the program, physical arrangements, etc.?
- Awkward-handling food, drinks, bit cramped and crowded
- Not enough seating, mingling room
- Too spread out-prefer single large room
- Seemed disjointed
- Didn't read program carefully [so couldn't find things]
- Though interesting, not really "State of the Libraries"-would be good if there were standard indicators that were presented at each State of the Libraries to give us a two or three year snapshot of how we are doing and where we want to be at this time next year. Also, I believe we should be told where we need to improve. It seems that we are always doing great. How do we improve if we don't know where we should be improving?
- Not enough signage-didn't know where everything was
- Having program in several rooms took away from socializing. One of the reasons I attend each year is to reconnect with colleagues in different buildings…with all so spread out too much time lag between coffee and program.
- Program content good, presentation needs to be more lively and shorter, or give break
- Didn't like rooms for refreshments and exhibitions being separated. It is also a time to meet the people from other libraries that we do business with, and didn't lend itself to social atmosphere.
- Didn't like exhibits in smaller rooms-seemed fragmented, almost claustrophobic
- Didn't like you couldn't sit down and eat. This caused people to scatter.
- Think Marianne and other speakers had good information to share, but I wish there was a way to make it a little more interesting.
- Felt would have been better at Livingston-seemed too spread out…no places to sit and eat.
- Sorry the question period was eliminated from the program.
- Better if presentations, food and program are in the same room…person can take a break or even stretch his/her legs easier
- Little confusing to know where to assemble after show and tell…I'm not necessarily looking to be entertained or anything, but I think that the presenters could be a bit more creative with preparing strategies for better engaging the audience, possibly by employing humor, images, or audience interaction.
- Preferred single room at Livingston-for ease of access, etc.
- Presentation did not address library staff concerns very much. The physical layout and arrangement of the program was poor…little opportunity to socialize with members of other departments with whom you work on a regular basis, but rarely see in person.
- Rooms for demos too small but room for program great. I'd like to see one bigger room with all demos and breakfast/registration so can circulate better, and then separate room for program.
- Too small space for socializing and networking. Refreshments were "same old, same old".
(3) What would you like to see/experience in the 2005 State of the Libraries?
- More about what staff and librarians can do and how they can work together to improve service to patrons
- A "day in the life in…" (non-cheesy)
- Articulation of the goals of the library system and the vision of how they will be accomplished
- Continue with presenters from all levels-this is good human relations and good PR. Have a single digital project showcased in a presentation-it is a vital part of the Library of the Future. (I would suggest New Jersey Digital Highway) Being involved in it has given me a perspective of the unification of Library with other organizations and teamwork among other constituencies. It also showcases our Special Collections, the SCC, and the interplay of many people.
- Continued information about developments in the libraries as well as statements about the direction of the libraries. Continued demonstrations of new technological developments and other advancements that can be done in poster format or with equipment.
- Continued informative programs about the future of the libraries
- Could there be a couple of discussion groups that include both faculty and staff? If that doesn't fit the purpose of the State of the Libraries, something that fosters more communication between faculty and staff-and gets more people to attend.
- Like to see it back in one room…also like to see guest speakers like we had in past
- Information on where we stand in our progress toward our goals
- It is a different topic, but I would prefer the date of State of the Libraries more distant from the fall RUL faculty meeting. Maybe there is a reason to be held at this time of year?
- It would be nice to teleconference to Newark and Camden so everyone can see the main presentation.
- Larger gathering area so people could mingle before the program begins
- Make it a real State of the Libraries-talk about major accomplishments and what we will do in the immediate future to reach this year's goals. Don't try to be "equal"-if not all libraries have equal accomplishments, then don't pretend they have. "If everyone's special, then no one is" -The Incredibles. Do something FUN (Last year's skit is a good example).
- More about us
- More compelling presentations
- More cutting edge digital projects
- More demos reflecting current work by RULS colleagues
- More digital and analog showcases
- More digital projects. Also update on where we are in our planning for DLI II.
- More of the same. Reports of activities tied to university or libraries strategic plans. Multiple speakers make it more interesting.
- Not sure yet. Would like opportunity to weigh in again some time in spring.
- Perhaps a closeup of "outrageous" or "funniest" experiences of librarians, staff and users of RU libraries
- Perhaps highlight the strategic initiatives in the larger presentation with demonstrations from projects that are addressing the goals and direction of RUL. There is a lot going on at RUL-perhaps feature one or two other projects for fuller treatment.
- Perhaps recognizing those who have done exceptional work during the course of the year
- Short speeches, speeches with little details or with more visual presentations
- Shorter reports from the field, concise written summaries to take home, put URLs for all demos in the printed program.
- Some sort of feature showing the talents/hobbies of the libraries' staff and faculty (craft display, etc) and staff recognition (especially long-term employees who had service anniversaries during the year)
- Something about our institutional repository. We've spent a lot of time and $ on it, and would like to see what we have to show to date.
- Statements by Rutgers scholars (one each humanities, sosci, science) about their expectations, needs from the collections.
- The digital showcase may be split in two different sessions allocating different time frames for different projects. This will allow people to see more projects.
- The model for this year was very good. Let's keep it!
- This may sound silly, but I really paid attention to the Renovation because the pictures were much more interesting to look at. I think all of the information presented was important, but I always seem to get tired of looking at those slides-I think the same format should be followed, overall I felt the program was well done.
- To find out the libraries will be receiving more funding
- Topics on RUL staff matters
- What we've achieved; what comes next?
- While it is nice to hear what is going on in RUL, it can be tedious (hence the snoring gentleman in the back) and also some library folk opt not to attend because they know/assume the program is going to be just boring speeches. It needs some serious attention to make it more attractive to attend the festivities.
(4) What location would you prefer-Livingston campus, Busch campus?
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