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FDLP Succession Planning: Real coordinators' experience

Disadvantages of not having a succession plan

This coordinator from a large academic library shared her experience coming into the position as depository coordinator, without any information from the previous coordinator who left suddenly. 

Her comments on what would have helped:

  • Contact information for our regional depository
  • Who to contact at GPO
  • List of our selections
  • Guidelines on collection maintenance
  • Rules on weeding
  • Internal workflows
  • Maintenance guidelines
  • Where the collection is located
  • How physical items are cataloged and processed
  • How e-resources are made available in our OPAC
  • How often our collection is evaluated
  • How to make sure we're compliant with rules/guidelines set by FDLP
  • Preserve longtime institutional knowledge
  • Succession planning prevents wasting time searching for the information on where to start

How succession planning helped

This coordinator from a small academic library shared her experience as a new coordinator who had access to succession documentation.

"My predecessor left me a USB drive with electronic files which included:

  • Past and planned projects
  • Processing instructions
  • Cataloging procedures
  • Other documentation

She also left a private LibGuide which includes:

  • Logins 
  • Contact information
  • First Steps

How the information helped:

  • It was helpful having the electronic files available to me
  • It gave me an idea where she had started and where she was planning to go
  • The most beneficial aspect was her willingness to chat with me about the collection and the library in general
  • It inspired me to leave my contact information along with my all my files on the same flash drive for my replacement
  • My predecessor's willingness to provide advice helped me adjust to my first position out of library school 

Succession Plan Example

If you would like to share your Succession Plan, send an email to [email protected] Any submitted Succession Plan should have any private information, logins and passwords masked.

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