in Smaller Libraries
TECHNICAL SERVICES IN SMALLER LIBRARIES
by Carol J. Dawe
Katten, Muchin & Zavis
GUIDELINES FOR TECHNICAL SERVICES IN PRIVATE LAW
Please bear in mind that these standards, if passed, would not be
binding. They would, however, be recommended guidelines for
practitioners, and carry the full support of the Association.
For your reference:
Small libraries = 0-50 attorneys in the firm
Medium libraries = 51-100 attorneys in the firm
Large libraries = 101-400+ attorneys in the firm
The cataloging function in small, medium and large
libraries should be performed or managed by an on-staff degreed
librarian or through a qualified cataloging service.
The Library of Congress classification scheme and
subject headings should be used with or without modification in
small,medium and large libraries. In California, the LA County Law
Library's Scheme is also acceptable for those libraries who are
already using it as their classification system because it is viewed
as an accepted alternative standard for classification.
Small, medium and large libraries should have access
to a bibliographic utility.
The current national catalog code should be followed
in the provision of descriptive cataloging in small, medium and
large libraries. At present, this is AACR2, which may be
supplemented by use of the Library of Congress Rule Interpretations.
In an online environment, it is strongly suggested that software
which is compatible with MARC bibliographic records and which
follows the MARC standards that are detailed in the USMARC Format
for Bibliographic Data should be chosen. Any MARC standards followed
by the bibliographic utility in use such as OCLC, RLIN, WLN, etc.
should also e followed.
Authority control should be provided within the
local catalog of small, medium and large libraries. (This is implied
by adherence to AACR2. At minimum, this means that the form of each
heading will be uniform so that all titles properly collocate. At
most, it could mean that a structure of cross references and
authority notes are provided in the catalog for the user. Authority
work is essential to a catalog, especially as it grows. Split files
work against the user's location of all pertinent titles.
All libraries should maintain some kind of
procedures/decisions file to ensure continuity of choice in
cataloging. Use of national catalog documentation such as AACR2,
Library of Congress Rule Interpretations, USMARC Format, Library of
Congress Subject Headings, LC Subject Cataloging Manual, Library of
Congress Classification, and LA County Class K for California
libraries may substitute for a local cataloging manual, if national
standards are followed. Any local variations on such national
standards should be recorded in the local manual.
SERIALS CHECK-IN, ROUTING, FILING, BINDING &
Serials check-in, in large libraries should be
automated using a commercially available system and is also strongly
recommended for small and medium libraries.
All libraries utilizing commercially available
automated serials check-in should take advantage of them to produce
holdings lists and management reports to better advertise and manage
The use of a commercially available software package
to facilitate routing will be the standard for large libraries and
is recommended for medium ones.
Changes to the routing list should be made in 1-3
days for large,medium and small libraries.
Depending on the volume of the mail, distribution by
the library staff should be completed within 2 to 4 hours of it's
arrival in the library.
The use of a filing service is stongly recommended
for large and medium firms.
It is recommended that large libraries perform the
binding process on a monthly basis, that medium libraries do so on a
quarterly basis and small libraries on a semi-annual basis.
The period from which a book is recommended for
purchase, to the time that it is ordered, should be 2-4 weeks for
large and medium libraries, and 1-2 weeks for small libraries. From
the time the book arrives from the publisher to thetime it is
available for use, should be no longer than 1-2 weeks for smaller
libraries and 2-3 weeks for larger libraries. In other words, the
entire process should take no longer than 4-6 weeks, barring
back-ordering or other complications involving the publisher.
A written collection development policy is standard
for large and medium libraries and recommended for smaller ones.
A technical services procedures manual should be
created and utilized as a standard in medium and large libraries. As
above, a cataloging procedures manual, at the very least, should be
in place in small libraries.
The recommended standard for conducting office
searches in medium and large libraries is two to four times per
year; the recommendation for small libraries is monthly.
Shelfreading should be conducted by large libraries
at least once per year; medium libraries at least two times per year
and by small libraries at least four times per year.
Statistics on technical services function and
procedures should be compiled by the Supervising Librarian at
regular or periodic intervals to show the amount of work done and
the time required to perform tasks.
|The members of the Advisory Board are: Suki Scott,
PLL Technical Sercives Standards Committee Chair, Prudential
Insurance Company; Joni Cassidy, Cassidy Cataloging
Services; Carol Dawe, Katten, Muchin & Zavis; Michele
Finerty, Orange County Law Library; Ellen McGrath, State
University of New York at Buffalo; Jean Pajerek, Cornell Law
Library; Jeanne Reynolds, Kemp, Smith Duncan & Hammond; Gary
Vander Meer, Northern Illinois University College of Law;
Marie Whited, Library of Congress Law Library.