Category Archives: HR Practice

Should Job Applicants be Permitted to Use Artificial Intelligence?

Every other email I receive seems to have the term artificial intelligence (AI) in the subject line. Although some resist the urge to use AI, many others appear to be jumping on the “band wagon.” With the promise of making everything better, faster, etc., AI is finding its way into nearly every facet of life. However, using AI tools is not new to human resource professionals. For quite some time we’ve either used it ourselves or know of libraries/organizations that Read the rest

How to Maintain Workplace Civility During This Election Season

Some managers would love to say to all of their employees, “When you enter the workplace, you cannot talk about politics.” However, this goes against the new norm of accepting that people must and will bring their whole selves to work. It’s unreasonable to think that people can just shut off or leave parts of themselves at the door when they enter their workspaces. Since the pandemic, more people understand that being allowed to be your true, authentic self Read the rest

Cost to Hire an Employee

By Sian Brannon

Have you ever considered what it costs to fill an open position in your library? Whatever type of library or position, there are tangible (or visible) costs you will incur, such as job posting site fees. More impactful to the total cost of hiring, however, are the ‘invisible’ costs of time involved. People involved include human resources, administrative assistants, supervisors, and search committees. 

Even before you start a search process, you have costs related to shifting work Read the rest

Cultivating Civility: Practical Ways to Improve a Dysfunctional Library

Book by Jo Henry, Joe Eshleman, and Richard Moniz

Like other workplaces, libraries can sometimes be stressful, with library workers bearing the brunt of such problems as uncivil patrons, poor communication, inadequate leadership, and toxic behaviors by fellow employees. But there’s hope. Following up their acclaimed examination of the dysfunctional library (“should be essential reading for library leaders,” raves Journal of the Australian Library and Information Association), here the authors present a book of proactive solutions and Read the rest

Are You Guilty of Well-Being Washing? 5 Signs with Ways to Fix It

How many programs did your library/organization offer last year to help employees improve their mental health and well-being? One? Two? None? During the pandemic, many employers recognized the need to provide resources and support for their employees. However, within the last year, many employers have become lackadaisical in their efforts. They acknowledge that employees may still need assistance, but they are no longer taking steps to provide it (beyond typical EAP). Although it may not be intentional, employers may be Read the rest

Employers are Filling in Etiquette Gaps

The first job I ever held was on a college campus during the time that I was an undergraduate student. (I won’t mention how many years ago that was.) I did not work in retail, at a fast-food restaurant, or even at the public library as a high school student. I did not gain the general knowledge which is typically obtained from employment. Beyond showing up and doing the work, I had no clue about business etiquette and what was Read the rest

Tips to Change the Mental Health Culture in Your Workforce

Employers and managers are increasingly focused on the mental health needs of their workers. We know that the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated the mental health concerns of people around the world. It also highlighted the need for employers to provide tangible support for their staff. Employers and managers are not expected to be experts in mental health. However, having resources available is vital. This article asserts that employers and managers who offer workplace initiatives to promote and support mental health see Read the rest

Workplace Discrimination Saps Everyone’s Motivation − Even If It Works in Your Favor

By Brent Simpson

When people work for discriminatory managers, they put in less effort. That’s true both when managers are biased against them and when they’re biased in their favor, according to a new paper that Nicholas Heiserman of Oklahoma State University and I have published in the journal Nature Human Behaviour.

To demonstrate this, we placed nearly 1,200 research participants in several experiments designed to mimic work settings, where they and other “workers” made decisions about how much effort Read the rest

How to Make It Safe for People to Speak Up at Work

Given the current environment facing libraries and library workers ─and the world in general─ (particularly as it relates to censorship, banned topics, war, etc.), many people are fearful about saying how they really feel. When people are afraid that something bad will happen to them (especially if it involves loss of employment) because of their decision to speak up, in most cases, they won’t do it. Some people live by the motto of ‘just keep your head down, do your Read the rest

Orientation Is Not Onboarding: The Difference Makes a Big Difference

After months of screening resumes and interviewing candidates, you found the perfect person to fill your position. You’ve negotiated and had an offer accepted. Now what? If you spend some time giving your new hire a thorough orientation, (which generally includes providing basic information about the library, its policies, procedures, and work environment) you’re off to a good start. What’s next? Do you show the person to their office, say, “Let me know if you have any questions,” and then Read the rest