Expectations for the Future

Strategic Planning
Creating a 21st Century Library System
Session 2
December 4, 2012
Looking to the Future

On Tuesday, December 4, twenty community members and library staff met to participate in Session 2 of strategic planning.  After reviewing highlights from the first session, “What’s Working Well in the Gloucester County Library System,” participants focused on the question:

If we were here together three years from now, looking back over those three years that have passed, what would have happened in the Gloucester County library System that would have happened that would make you feel proud of the accomplishments of the Gloucester County Library System?

Individually, participants recorded their responses to this question.  Participants then shared their thinking with other small group members.  Participants then, by consensus, identified points they agreed should be brought forward to the full participant group.  The work of individuals and the small groups is summarized below.

Between Sessions 1 and 2, consensus items will be organized to reflect goal areas on which the work of Session 3 will be focused.

Consensus Contributions
Information Hub (Family/Community) Information Ombudsman – County Clearinghouse
Consistent & Adequate Financial Base to support: programs, services, technology, physical spaces, increased staffing
Establish a Library Foundation to assist in implementing technology projects

Individual Responses
New Glassboro branch
** Adequate/stable funding
Increased staffing
Better understanding of all the library has to offer residents of all ages – services, programs, technology, resources
More collaborations and partnerships
Updated technology and physical spaces
Library collection that meets the needs of our patrons
Bundle family programs where all members of the family can come together and have something for everyone. (Family Days)
Have library be a place for people seeking help in many different areas of research such as life needs (food, housing etc.) job training, motivational
Create a Library 501c3 Foundation
Lend an expert from social service and business
The upgrading of facilities in communities in need of same
Increase in technology and staying out in front of new techniques (website)
Library serves as clearing house for all county programs
Ombudsman – for people in need of services – information all under one roof
Consistent financial base for implementing improvements– facilities, personnel and programs
Create five year or 3 year financial plan – attach $’s to ideas
Increase staffing to create equitable programs across all communities
Good financial status
Continued improvements to the GCLS infrastructure
Staying on a par if not ahead of increasing technologies
Continuation of programs for taxpayers
Great staff
Professional and caring management
Backing of communities and community leaders

Consensus Contributions

New Glassboro Library
“State of the art” meeting rooms
Continued community program and (intergenerational programs) – Workshops, concerts, eLearning
Expansion of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics)
Volunteers for specific services

Individual Responses
Webinars – school age and adult programs
Podcasts – GC services
Expansion for meeting rooms at Logan and East Greenwich
eLearning modules
Check out ability with smart phones and mobile devices
Bistro coffee cafe concept
A new library building with computer labs for kids, teens and adults
Meeting rooms for organizations and a room devoted to local history
Be a part of Rowan Boulevard, not in the shadow of it
All locations – state of the art library technology
Able to provide services that don’t even exist in 2012 because no one has thought of them yet!
Continue to surprise and impress our customers
Honor Society workshops to provide tech training
Expansion of STEM programs
Music series and Art presence – Art on the walls, art shows- murals in children areas, kid’s art in the children’s areas
Weekend hours – later on Fridays, Saturdays and Sunday hours
Community Connections – Family activities, multigenerational ice cream social
Cafe and bistro
Maintain level of services (may be different services)
Appeal to teens/school seniors
Keep up with current technology
Provide staff training
Make sure all branches have the resources they need
Continued diversity of opportunities for the wide range of ages
Learning for seniors to keep abreast of technology that will help keep them connected
Continue tutoring, mentoring of young people
Connecting people of different communities, ages and backgrounds

Consensus Contributions

Bring back concerts
Expand technology training
Expand programs for older adults (and other adults)
Expand borrowing options
More cooperation with technology/service corporations
Remain current with new technology options

Individual Responses
Pay by credit cards
Flexible seating for spontaneous conversation groups
Re-institute mail program/provide off-site loan options
Learning opportunities for latest technology/ software – work with colleges/technology stores?
Expand adult and teen program offerings – different demographics
Browse shelving options – get away from stacks
Author programs/speakers
Virtual librarian by appointment
More branches in under-served communities
Financial security for maintenance and resources – borrowing without fines – ways to reclaim materials
Card less identification (fingerprints? Voice? Phone?)
Inclusive – including temporary residents
More programs for community services
Voice search options
Streaming/downloadable media
On line book clubs
Service to residential facilities – township transport to library
Advanced extra computer activities
Work more with AARP, American Red Cross etc.
Pay by debit or credit cards
Renewal of musical concerts – Bank sponsor, possibly charge a small admission if needed
Continued update of computers and whatever new electronics have come into our world
Making sure that our children and grandchildren have suitable programs to help prepare them for the future
Provide classes for all ages in various areas- computer and other electronics, book reviews, discussion groups on timely topics
Pay fines by credit card
Restoration of music concerts
Continuous updating materials
Maintenance of physical plants
Maintenance of staffing levels
Integrating of newest technologies
Good lightening outside libraries
More computer training classes – especially at night

Consensus Contributions

New building in Glassboro upgrades existing buildings
Technologies up to date including adding tablets for use
Partnership with – businesses, schools and other social agencies
Marketing – got research experts and let “them” know who you are
Cultural (multi) programming for all ages

Individual Responses
Ground breaking new building at Glassboro
Story times are recognized as contributing to early literacy
Branches have cultural programs for communities
Staff is recognized as the go to information experts
The library and business community have a mutually beneficial partnership
Technology will keep up to date for all ages
Opportunities for all to get to info (databases, etc.) online at home
Tablets available at library – download books and read for those tech minds
Art films once a month
Library a cultural center for arts, sciences and more quiet rooms
Art galleries
International video conferences with libraries in other countries
I would like to see a “brand” New Library Building and learning center in downtown Glassboro
All new facility with “state of the art” construction
Technology and access to library resources kept up to date at existing branches of the GCLS.
More adult programming
Continue to embrace new technologies
Cooperation with other organizations
Be the first place the community goes to for research help
Be known for fantastic customer service
Family “place to be”
Programs orientation toward families
Instruction with community
           Mobile Libraries
           Program partnerships with other agencies, organizations
           Joint ventures with schools
           Increased interaction with children oriented agencies with such agencies as 4H.
Upgraded building
Increased marketing

Please join us for the next and final meeting on “Creating an Action Plan”.   Participants will suggest action items necessary to accomplish our Strategic Plan and Vision. We need your participation and opinions!  We’d like to hear from everyone – families, students, teens, seniors – any member of the community who is interested in contributing to this process.  Please invite your friends and neighbors, even if they have never been to the library or one of the previous sessions.  Light refreshments will be provided.

When: Wednesday, January 16th 
Time: 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Where: Mullica Hill Library, meeting rooms A and B