Face-to-face with the new normal: libraries' readiness and perspectives toward the changing service environment

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Library Management


Purpose: This paper seeks to explore how library management in academic and school institutions has been adapting to the changes brought about by the global COVID-19 pandemic. It discusses how their priorities have shifted in reinventing their strategic plans and innovative library responses; and their readiness to meet new expectations to support their communities, as necessitated by the changes. Design/methodology/approach: Employing the change readiness concept as a framework, it encompasses inquiry into the library management's response to the changes in the service and work environments at the onset of change, while in the process of adapting to the current changes, and readiness to the perceived changes in the next normal future service environment. Quantitative design was employed for this study, and self-selection strategy as a non-probability sampling technique was used in collecting data from respondents. Target respondents were head librarians. An online questionnaire was used as instrument for data gathering, which was tested valid and reliable. Findings: Findings reveal that respondents have achieved quite a lot in preparing to adapt to change and generally agree that they are ready to deal with the perceived, future-wise changes in all aspects. Research limitations/implications: The study was open to all types of libraries as subjects; however, one-person libraries were excluded. Being self-selected, the respondent group for this study is not a true representative of the target population. Data analysis was strictly based on the gathered results. Practical implications: The study offers insights on the value of integrating measures pertinent to the emergence of new roles and needs in the changing service environment. Originality/value: The results of the study are seen to have a potential contribution to the library organization's growth as they oversee their operations, prospectively.

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