In response to our shrinking staff and shrinking budget, we’ve had to take a hard look at the services we offer, and in many cases either eliminate, reduce, or radically change those services. We thought it would be useful to document the process we’re using to make these decisions, both to encourage us to continue to do this hard work of looking critically at our services, and to make sure that the proper amount of consultation and vetting is taking place as we change our services to match our available resources. Here are the steps we’ve been taking:
1. We’ve challenged all of LIS to come up with ideas for things we can do less of or stop doing or do differently. That idea gets written up, documenting what the present service level is, what the new proposed service level would be, the savings in time or money, and who would be affected by the change.
2. The idea is discussed within the workgroup and/or area as a first step. Conversations across workgroups, areas, and with groups affected by this proposed change are encouraged.
3. If the idea seems worth pursuing, the idea is added to the central list of ideas we are vetting.
4. The ADs will provide the first level of vetting.
5. The managers group will provide a second level of vetting, to try to capture any unintended consequences. This happens on two tracks. The idea is sent out via email, and if there are no objections, we move it forward to the next step. If there are objections, we pause to discuss further.
6. Once it has been internally vetted, as appropriate, we share the idea with any or all of the groups listed below, using the same fast track/slow track method of gathering feedback:(More information about some of these groups can be found at http://sites.middlebury.edu/lisadvisors/ )
1. Faculty LIS Advisory Group and/or divisional advisory groups
2. Student LIS Advisory Group
3. Academic Affairs
4. President’s Staff
5. Banner LEADS
6. Academic Dept Chairs
7. Once fully vettted, we’ll implement the change and communicate the change to the affected members of the community.
While this process seems complicated, we think any given idea should be able to be vetted in a month or less, depending on various meeting schedules and agendas, and depending on whether or not the idea moves on the fast track or slow track.
We will shortly publish on the web both the list of reduced services and also the list of service reductions under consideration.