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Strategic Plan – June 2005

Mission Statement

The American Association of Law Libraries Technical Services Special Interest Section (TS-SIS) promotes the communication of ideas, interests and research in the following areas of activity: acquisitions, cataloging and classification, preservation, serials control and management of technical services functions. The Section seeks to serve a leadership role in the ongoing professional development of technical services staff working in all types and sizes of law library settings. The Section seeks to enhance the understanding and emphasize the importance of technical services for all law librarians. TS-SIS also reaches out to colleagues in non-law libraries to insure that national initiatives are being monitored and essential input provided.

Work of the Section

The work of the Technical Services Special Interest Section is performed primarily by four standing committees: Acquisitions; Cataloging and Classification; Preservation; and Serials Control. These committees conduct surveys, study problems or areas of concern, make recommendations, and plan Annual Meeting programs and workshops.

Committees are also appointed for administrative work, e.g. Awards, Program/Education, and Nominations. The Joint Research Grants Committee is a joint committee of TS-SIS and the Online Bibliographic Services SIS (OBS-SIS). Special committees are occasionally appointed for ad hoc tasks such as centennial celebration planning, strategic plan updating, or bylaws revision.

TS-SIS, jointly with OBS-SIS, publishes the newsletter Technical Services Law Librarian. It also maintains a website and an online discussion list. The Section serves as the "oversight" body for AALL official representatives to related organizations: ALA ALCTS/CC:DA (Committee on Cataloging: Description and Access); ALA ALCTS/MARBI (Machine Readable Bibliographic Information); and ALA ALCTS/SAC (Subject Analysis Committee).

An annual survey is distributed to gather input from members and to solicit volunteers to do the work of the Section.

Purpose of Strategic Planning

It is important that we critically examine our efforts periodically, and look for ways to re-energize or revitalize the Section. This can result in greater participation and increased viability. It is our hope that the following strategic directions, as well as the specific actions for achieving them, will accomplish this.

Strategic Directions

Strategic direction 1: Broaden the leadership and active involvement of Section members

  • Specific action 1.1: Increase emphasis on recruitment of volunteers for committees in annual membership survey.
  • Specific action 1.2: Seek to increase participation of members who have never served on a committee.
  • Specific action 1.3: Establish a Membership Committee to provide outreach to new TS-SIS members by regularly requesting lists of new members from AALL and mailing out welcome packets to include a cover letter, the TS-SIS brochure, and other relevant informational material.
  • Specific action 1.4: Direct the Joint Reception Committee to appoint a greeter at the Joint Reception to occupy a table at the entrance and provide nametags, with distinctive nametags for first-timers.
  • Specific action 1.5: Introduce new technical services librarians to one another at Annual Meeting roundtables.
  • Specific action 1.6: Ensure that the TS-SIS Chair or another designated officer is present at CONELL every year to publicize TS-SIS, with the goal of recruiting new members.
  • Specific action 1.7: Assign a liaison to the AALL Mentoring and Retention Committee, encourage TS-SIS members to participate in the AALL mentoring project, and promote informal mentoring relationships within TS-SIS.

Strategic direction 2: Improve program and workshop development

  • Specific action 2.1: Solicit members for the TS-SIS Program/Education Committee who represent a cross-section of technical services interests and include a balance of new and more experienced members.
  • Specific action 2.2: Establish a more formal system for designing, proposing, and supporting programs and workshops, to include these actions:
    • Vigorously solicit ideas and be alert to issues of interest for program proposals.
    • Stay abreast of programming at other conferences for possible topics.
    • Require pre-meeting submissions of first drafts of program and workshop proposals for the following year's meeting in order to have them ready for distribution and discussion at the Program/Education Committee meeting.
    • Submit a mix of program proposals that target both new and experienced members.
    • Establish that the Program/Education Committee will work with the TS-SIS Executive Board on the final list of proposals and rankings to submit to the AMPC.
    • Implement improvements to the program and workshop development process made possible through the efforts of the Joint Ad Hoc Committee on Annual Meeting Programming and AALL's Annual Meeting programming changes.
  • Specific action 2.3: With the increase in available funding resulting from an all-electronic newsletter (no more printing and mailing costs), offer more grants to TS-SIS members for registration and/or travel expenses for the annual meeting and related workshops.
  • Specific action 2.4: Continue to use Technical Services Law Librarian and the TS-SIS website for educational purposes.
  • Specific action 2.5: Explore web-based training opportunities and publicize them to members via the TS-SIS discussion forum at ts-sis [at] aallnet.org and the TS-SIS website.

Strategic direction 3: Create more visibility for TS-SIS within AALL

  • Specific action 3.1: Provide annual financial support (with OBS-SIS) for the joint research grant and actively recruit applicants.
  • Specific action 3.2: Encourage members to submit articles to Law Library Journal, Spectrum, and other publications that reach a wider audience.
  • Specific action 3.3: Publicize the work of TS-SIS in the "From the Chair" column in TSLL and in the "Special Interest Sections" column in Spectrum.
  • Specific action 3.4: Maintain a highly visible presence at the TS-SIS activities table in the exhibit hall.
  • Specific action 3.5: Investigate the feasibility of establishing TS-SIS liaisons to the type-of-library special interest sections: Academic Law Libraries SIS; Private Law Libraries SIS; and State, Court and County Law Libraries SIS.
  • Specific action 3.6: Solicit members to assist Webmaster in maintaining the TS-SIS website and keeping it up-to-date with new information and design enhancements.
    • Post items of interest regularly.
    • Update website with names of new officers, committee chairs, and representatives in August of each year.
    • Compose and add an FAQ section to the website.
  • Specific action 3.7: Encourage use of the TS-SIS online forum at ts-sis [at] aallnet.org.