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Your Library Renewed – Staffing Logistics

St. Louis County Library, Missouri

Innovation Summary

During the system-wide construction campaign, Your Library Renewed, St. Louis County Library determined we would find useful positions for all staff displaced by branch closures. At times we have as many as five branches closed at one time for renovation or new construction for an average of 32 weeks each.

Problem Statement

The public was very concerned about what would happen to “their staff” during closures. It was important that we place them where they could be the most helpful. Most staff were allocated to nearby branches, as many of their patrons would be visiting those branches during the closures. We also looked at this time as an opportunity to add manpower to tasks throughout the system that often get sidelined due to time and staffing constraints.


In addition to staffing branches nearby, staff were asked to: • Assist in the History and Genealogy department • Assist with special projects in the Bookmobiles and Mobile Services department • Staff coverage was needed in the Customer Connect department, our main phone line • Assist with inventories of collections in the warehouse housing the collections of all closed branches


Shifting staff in this way allows for additional cross-training. Warehouse work cleans up our collections and holdings database significantly. Over 16,000 items were updated during this process to date. Working for other departments/branches has a positive effect on staff morale. They now more inclined to provide coverage at branches other than their own. There is also a better understanding of our collection as well as the work done in the support departments throughout the system.