Change Management in the Academic Library: Transition From Print to Digital Collections

Change Management in the Academic Library: Transition From Print to Digital Collections

Oyeronke Adebayo (Covenant University, Nigeria), Michael Opeoluwa Fagbohun (Covenant University, Nigeria), Ugwunwa Chinyere Esse (Covenant University, Nigeria) and Nwanne Mary Nwokeoma (Covenant University, Nigeria)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2119-8.ch001
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Abstract

The introduction of ICT has no doubt changed and redefined the way and manner in which library operations are carried out. In this chapter, the phenomenon of change management was discussed and Unfreeze-Change-Refreeze model was adopted. The chapter also delved into the management of change in academic libraries, types of Digital library collections, access mode to digital collections, the need for transition from print to digital collections, the need to reposition library tools, resources and expertise, need for accessibility of collections by user, the need and benefits for preservation of digital resources, health and safety policies and prospect of change management. Despite the great achievements recorded in academic libraries due to change in operations, there is still another side to the coin. Issues such as techno stress which is a technology related health problem came to the fore. Other challenges such as increase in expenditure, staffing issues, etc. also surfaced.
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Introduction

A dramatic change has occurred in all spheres of life. This change has affected both the environment we live in and the way and manner we carry out our duties at our work places. Information, Communication and Technology (ICT), has perpetually changed the operations of activities. It has brought about tremendous change in every profession including the library and information science. Traditionally, the library housed print materials such as manuscripts, books, maps etc. Presently, it is commonplace to find libraries housing ICT gadgets such as computers, laptops, CD ROMs, scanners, photocopying machines, printers etc. Many libraries have taken a step further by creating repositories, which houses important publications and makes same available to users remotely. The library has been tagged as a growing organism; i.e the change being experienced now has been long envisaged. With this development, it is of great importance that this change in libraries is well managed. Against this backdrop, this chapter explores the management of change in academic libraries

Change is the alteration in the state of a matter, a particular phenomenon, operation, activity as a result of varied factors. Change simply signifies doing things in a new but systemic way. Good management therefore entails being proactive, innovative, have fresh ideas and bring new perspectives into how services are being delivered in order to manage the change that may come up. According to Purushothama- Gowda (2015) the management of change is a complex process that involves a lot of exercise on the part of the management of any organization or institution and it requires considerable foresight. It is essential to note that when talking about change in an organization, it is not the organization itself that has changed but the people (employees). It is to the extent to which the management manager and people in an organization are willing to cooperate and bring the desired changes that result into change management because change does not just occur of its own accord.

In his book titled Management Challenges in the 21st century, Druker (1999) itemized the following about change:

  • It cannot be predicted.

  • It is inevitable.

  • It has become the rule.

  • Carrying out change is painful, risky and it is too much work.

  • It must be encouraged.

  • Managers of organizations/institutions need to key into the opportunities in change?

  • The managers should also know how to take advantage of change.

Kurt Lewin in 1947 developed a model known as Unfreeze-Change-Refreeze; this model makes reference to the three stages of process of change. He used the analogy of changing the shape of a block of ice. The Table 1 shows this model.

Table 1.
Unfreeze-Change-Refreeze Model
Unfreeze• To prepare the organization in accepting the change
• Building a new way of operation by breaking old and existing status quo
• Convincing the employees on why old ways of doing things cannot continue
Change• Explain the benefits
• Prepare for the change
• Communicate frequently
• Deal with issues as they arise
• Involve the employees in the process
Refreeze• Prepare job description
• Give rewards to employees that deserve it
• Look out for the barriers that may hinder change
• Provide support and training
• Create an avenue to receive feedback

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