Information ServicesGuidelines for library representatives

You will find general guidance on stock ordering on the purchasing stock page.

The following information is relevant for the departmental Library Representatives.

Role of the Library Representative

As a Library Representative for your Department or School you have a liaison role which expects you:

  • to be aware of overlapping information needs within the Department (e.g. modules sharing the same core text) and alert the Library to any likely peaks in demand
  • to gather the views of departmental colleagues concerning collection development requirements (e.g. new teaching/research interests) or new products they may have seen, and to convey these views to the Library
  • to act as a conduit for information from the Library to departmental colleagues concerning developments in collection development, new products on trial or assessment of current portfolios
  • to work with the Library Board Faculty representative at critical points in the year to confirm preferences for annual serial and database portfolio renewals or cancellations (usually in August-October)
  • to liaise with the Library on other relevant aspects of Library support for the Department

There will be two face-to-face meetings each academic year which you should attend. These are:

  1. Late May / Early June – each Faculty Librarian will hold a meeting with the Library Representatives from their relevant Departments or Schools to discuss possible changes to the subscriptions portfolio for that Faculty
  2. Late November / Early December – the AGM for all Library Representatives to be held in the Library

Content of communications

The types of communications you can expect to receive from your Faculty Librarian are:

  • details on products currently on trial – feedback will be solicited
  • newsletter from the library, one per-semester (April and November)
  • Faculty Annual Report (August)
  • requests for support in identifying appropriate staff to be involved in library projects such as stock review
  • any other additional updates and offers as relevant to each specific department, this may cover items such as discounts for Open Access publishing, conferences and events, or general news of subject-specific interest

Faculty Librarians will aim to include in their communications the broad target audience of each communication to help make clear how widely each item should be distributed.

The types of communications the Library will expect from you are:

  • details of events and induction sessions where a representative from the Library would be of benefit (open days, general inductions, recruitment fairs etc.)
  • updates on staffing and structure changes
  • details of new courses or cohorts, and details of who to contact regarding supporting these
  • forwarding of, or subscribing Faculty Librarians to, any internal newsletters which may be of benefit to us
  • passing our contact details to new members of staff and encouraging they meet with us
  • information on new products and resources which we can trial

General enquiries about overdue books, fines, or IT support should go to contact us.

Key dates

Start of financial year: 1 August

Library board meets to agree apportionment statement: mid-end September

Deadline to agree subscriptions portfolio changes: mid-end September

Library Representatives AGM: late November-early December

Subscriptions review for next calendar year begun: late May

Faculty-specific Library Representatives meetings to discuss subscriptions portfolios: late May-early June

Final date to submit book recommendations for current financial year (to allow time for processing and receipt of goods by end of financial year): mid-June

End of financial year: 31 July

Subscriptions review

An annual review of the subscriptions portfolio will be undertaken by the relevant Faculty Librarian in consultation with the Library Representatives. The stages of this review are:

  • statistics gathered and analysed by Library staff (April)
  • items with high cost-per-use figures and decreasing usage trends will be investigated as possible titles for substitution or cancellation by Library staff (May)
  • Faculty-specific Library Representatives meetings to be held to discuss titles which are under-performing and available for substitution or cancellation, and potential new titles which have been requested (late May / early June)
  • deadline for submitting suggestions of new subscription titles (July)
  • final communication from Faculty Librarian outlining suggested substitutions, cancellations and new titles (August)
  • deadline for Faculty feedback in relation to portfolio changes (September)
  • subscriptions portfolio changes activated (October / November for new calendar year)


Acquisitions keeps expenditure and commitment records for each Faculty library allocation. Please note that all funds are allocated at a Faculty level; there are not specific allocations for each Department.

  • every allocation should be fully expended by 1st July, which allows time for the Finance Office to clear invoices and close the accounts for 31st July
  • from 1st July until the accounts are closed, the Library has to manage the total Library Grant balance according to overall priorities. This means that, should a book allocation not be fully expended by 1st July, it may lose its balance

A Library Representative can contact Acquisitions at any time to find out the current financial situation of their Faculty library allocation:

Authorisation for resources charged to a book allocation:

  • recommendations from academic staff and resources associated with class reading lists will normally be charged to the relevant Faculty library book allocation.
  • the format, number of copies and location of resources will be assigned by the Library with reference to the relevant Faculty Collection Profile.
  • any queries concerning the appropriateness of recommendations may be referred to the Library Representative or Faculty Librarians.

If you would like to be more actively involved in collection development activities supporting teaching, learning and research in your Department please contact your Faculty Librarian, who will be pleased to assist. The Faculty Librarians are: