Librarians Need Extra Knowledge To Be More Relevant

Librarians Need Extra Knowledge To Be More RelevantBy Asmahanim Amir
Pix Ikhwan Hashim

BANGI, 19 May 2015 – All librarians at The National University of Malaysia (UKM)  need to upgrade their knowledge to deal with increasingly demanding consumers, especially with researchers.

Former Head Librarian, Putri Saniah Megat Abd Rahman said librarians must learn more, by taking additional specialisation courses so that they know the kind of information to provide to researchers if necessary.

“We are given the opportunities to do further studies. So you need to take this opportunity to share the knowledge.

“You need to have skills in analysing data, you should have a strategic plan for the next few years and to plan how to improve your skills. When you have extra knowledge, you can easily connect with library users,” she said at the Forum titled UKM 45 Years of Bucking The Trend here, yesterday.

She said librarians should work as a team to ensure the library’s transformation towards becoming more relevant.

She added although most students use the online library to do their work, the hard-copy materials in the library are still relevant.

“The online materials like journals are not complete and mostly the undergraduate student use it. The postgraduate students, especially PhD students and international students still use the library to search their materials for their research.

“So you must know every corner in the library so you can provide accurate information to library users.

“We know the materials like journals, documents, books and photos. We should know how to package all this information as a source of knowledge. So, you have to read and understand the collections in our library,” she said.

Putri Saniah said, the relationship between the librarian with researchers also need to be strong to ensure that research materials produced are of high quality and can be archived in the library and subsequently become reference material for other students.

Meanwhile, another former Head Librarian, Abu Bakar Maidin said knowledge management is very broad as it includes the perspective of computers, information system management, etc.

“In the library, we just focus on the needs of the library collection. We cannot make student data because we just collect library data only,” said Abu Bakar.

He expressed hope that the library staff carry out their duties in a trustworthy manner so that university staff and students, especially academic staff who use the library have a good impression of them.

“Reduce complaints from consumers by increasing the quality of service and always interact with library users,” he added.