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Issues at the Management of Academic Libraries - Coursework Example

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This paper on customer service operations and excellence aims to discuss the various issues related to the management of academic libraries, with the help of appropriate theories and models and concludes with recommendations for improving the operations of the service to achieve better results…
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Issues at the Management of Academic Libraries
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Download file to see previous pages The concept of achieving excellence in service through effective customer service has now transcended to various fields in general and academic libraries in particular. Service institutions such as universities are mainly focused on providing optimum quality service to the students, by way of enhanced support services for education, as a means to retain students and improve their academic performance (Sander et al., 2000). Academic libraries exist purely to offer services to the students, which include a range of activities such as offering professional reference services to enable the students to effectively use the various resources that the library has to offer; respond to online queries for references; assist in information delivery services such as shelving and re-shelving books, periodicals etc., among many others (Hernon, Altman, 1996).
One of the primary objectives of libraries is to store and record detailed information about books, in order to serve the 'customer' i.e. students in a better manner. Academic libraries, in particular, deals with preserving and recording comprehensive information with regard to scholarly publications as well as the primary resources which are used by the students for achieving scholarships. The libraries in general and academic libraries, in particular, have recently undergone significant changes over the past couple of years, especially with regard to the manner in which information is stored and dealt with. Such rapid transformations can be largely attributed to the fact that the development of information technology has penetrated almost all aspects of human life, and academic libraries are no exception. Such changes have brought about a significant transformation in the manner in which libraries are governed and managed; followed by changes in its organizational structure, skill sets required of library staff, as well as the range of facilities made available to the customers (Budd, 2005). Libraries across the globe are now increasingly accepting and accommodating such changes, in order to enhance their service quality. Considering the wide-ranging transformations brought about by technology, the management of library services must be reviewed to accommodate and cope up with the changing times. However, it must be noted that despite the rapid changes which have penetrated almost all the aspects of management within academic libraries, customer services still remain the same and uninhibited. The key role of librarians still surrounds the provision of optimum services to the users, by offering high-quality services. However, the concept of customer satisfaction with regard to libraries, remains a critical aspect of discussion and debate, especially since it has undergone various changes over the years. There are various approaches to measure customer satisfaction depending on the type of services offered. Measuring the same through the contemporary conceptual model is one such way to assess and judge the level and quality of services offered (Crosby, 1993). The term service quality is defined in a different manner by various authors. It refers to customer satisfaction and meeting customer expectations in an optimum manner. However, the basic definition of the term encompasses the following key characteristics: Excellence in service provision; value addition; conforming to specifications and rules. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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