What if I told you there was a way to save thousands of dollars in your library’s budget? 

Staff are your library’s most valuable resource. Training is the most effective way for a library to demonstrate the value placed in shaping and retaining quality staff. And it saves you money! Studies by the human resources company Exude show training a new hire can cost as much as 30 percent of the job’s salary. If an employee makes $40,000 a year that could equal around $12,000! Training an existing employee might only cost a few hundred and take far less time.  

There are lots of other reasons to invest in staff training. Well-trained employees work better as a team, are more productive, and exhibit improved morale. Training demonstrates a commitment to improving your library’s impact on the community. And training is especially important right now, as libraries rebuild their visitation and circulation numbers, which took a hit during the pandemic. 

Training staff takes time and specialized expertise. But your library doesn't need to hire its own trainer to get the benefits of professional development. A team of experts with real-world library experience created Learn with NoveList to help libraries retain staff, build their skills, and improve their work. 

Learn with NoveList courses are designed with libraries in mind. There are flexible learning styles, including self-paced or in-depth live courses. There are interactive activities and lots of resources and encouragement to help staff put what they learn into practice. Here are three specific ways that Learn with NoveList can build the confidence and capacity of your staff. 

Reach Readers 

I once heard a librarian describe reading for pleasure as “fairy dust.” And for most library staff, there is no greater pleasure than connecting a reader with a book they will love. But frankly, readers’ advisory is also a little challenging. Whether your staff needs to create a strategic plan to guide your readers’ advisory services or feels a little lost or overwhelmed when trying to locate books that include underrepresented or marginalized identities, Learn with NoveList has a course that can get your staff on an even footing for readers’ advisory.  

“I’ve always considered readers’ advisory a huge weakness of mine,” says Judy, who works as a public service specialist at the Dallas Public Library. “I get very intimidated when I’m put on the spot. This training not only gave me useful tools but perhaps most importantly it boosted my confidence so that readers’ advisory no longer seems scary.” 

Coming soon: A new self-paced advanced readers’ advisory course will be added to our catalog in June 2022. 

Promote Your Library 

A huge part of a library’s success is dependent on promotion. Our organizations spend a lot of time, energy, and money building our collections, creating programming, and offering services for the community. We want people to use our libraries! Promotion is the bridge that connects your library to your community. Learn with NoveList features courses that will guide your staff in developing effective strategies for increasing circulation, promoting events and services, as well as creating brand awareness and library loyalty.  

“I would highly recommend this class to libraries of all sizes that want to be better at marketing,” said Alan Harkness, Director of the Chattahoochee Valley Libraries. “We’ve never been taught how to do this, and it isn’t first nature for many of us. However, if we apply ourselves as NoveList teaches us, we can be more successful at telling our story and delivering positive outcomes." 

Coming soon: A new self-paced social media strategy course will be added to our catalog in June 2022. 

Make an Impact 

Raising awareness and garnering stakeholder support is particularly important and challenging right now. If your library is worried about budget cuts, first amendment challenges, or reinforcing your image as an invaluable asset to your community, an advocacy plan is essential. Courses in this track will guide you through the strategies necessary to align library services to essential priorities, attract partnerships, and leverage the transformative value of your library with all stakeholders. 

Diana Rusch, Continuing Education Consultant for Reaching Across Illinois Library System, invested in training on strategic storytelling (my favorite course to teach!) and said the course is, “Engaging and informative! Filled with how-tos and real-life examples on how to reach library stakeholders through effective storytelling across a variety of communication channels.” 

Visit LearnwithNoveList.com to see our full course catalog and try out one of our free webinars on navigating genres. Sign up for communications and stay in the know about upcoming courses and offerings.

Collection Promotion Deep-Dive

This special session includes two hours of live instruction with plenty of activities, interactive elements, discussion, and an opportunity to ask questions and get real-time feedback from the instructor. This deep-dive session will provide lots of tips and best practices for promoting the breadth and depth of your library’s collection.

Live session on Thursday, May 19, 2022, at 2 pm ET

Angela Hursh is Senior Engagement Consultant for NoveList. She is listening to Let’s Not Do That Again by Grant Ginder.