The Embedded Librarian - Survey Results

Image [cc] Oran Viriyincy
[Follow-Up Post from Marlene Gebauer]

The Embedded Librarians survey results are out! [Download the PDF compilation]

Thanks to Ark and 3 Geeks for allowing us to publish them for review.

There was a very healthy turnout for the survey (244 participants). Percentages as well as total count have been provided. Graphs have been provided for quick review. On page 4, “Other” is comprised mostly of Tax, Banking and Finance, Insurance and Health Care.

There are some interesting things to note as you review the data:

  • While the clear majority of firms participating in the survey do not have embedded librarians or specialists, when compared to those firms that do and are considering it, the split is nearly 50/50. 
  • While most firms with embedded specialists/librarians have had them in place from 1-5 years, there is also strong number of firms where the position has been in place for 11+ years 
  • Embedded Specialists/Librarians seem to find success in a variety of business support models, most being housed with the department they support, in a centralized location or in decentralized locations. 
  • The large majority of embedded specialists/librarians report directly to the library. The next largest group have a direct line to the library and dotted line reporting to the practices they support. 
  • Some of the benefits firms have experienced from having an embedded specialist/librarian are developing stronger relationships with their respective groups and better understanding research need as applied to practice, cross training of the library staff, improved workflow, improved evaluation of research products needed to support practice areas and a higher profile in the firm. 
What are your takeaways from the survey? What other questions would you liked to see asked? Would you like to see this survey updated annually?

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Jason said...

I would like to know whether librarians that are located within the department or group they work with express having stronger, better relationships with the other members of the department compared to those who are "centralized" or "decentralized."

Marlene said...

Hi Jason: That is a great question. At the conference, we discussed that sitting among members of a practice group did build strong relationships. We also discussed that if a firm is used to a centralized or decentralized model of support, it might take a little longer, but that the relationships are still build because embedded specialists are still a regular presence supporting practice group research and projects, attending meetings, doing training, etc...


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