Technology Planning, Policy Development & Training

The technology planning process is a blend of ongoing strategic and financial oversight and project management.  The purchasing of technology is entwined with budget and finance but informed by technical expertise.  There is no dispute that technology planning is critical in today’s library.  In this competencies category, planning is combined with policy development and training so that any and all technology decisions are in keeping with far-reaching organizational strategies.

Last updated: April 5, 2016

Competency:  Formulates and implements an ongoing technology planning process

Associated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Identifies key players to form a productive technology planning team and orients the team with pertinent and current information and training
  • Collects relevant data (inventories of hardware and software, licensing requirements, subscription fees, upgrade and replacement requirements) and defines the criteria for upgrading or purchasing new equipment
  • Evaluates opportunities and requirements for expanded or new technology-based services
  • Establishes clear priorities for technology plans that align with the library’s ongoing operations and strategic plan and the needs of the library users
  • Establishes sources and contacts (both inside and outside the library sphere) to keep abreast of emerging technologies and how they impact library technology planning
  • Balances risk-taking with realism and alignment with library’s priorities.


Competency:  Develops and maintains a library technology plan that meets current and future needs of the library community

Associated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Investigates and analyzes the needs of the community and environment to understand current and future needs and trends
  • Creates appropriate goals, objectives and activities that reflect analysis of community needs
  • Strives for compatible and stable systems and configurations for maximum reliability
  • Develops and applies evaluation measures that gauge the success of the plan
  • Anticipates and predicts changes, trends and influences to effectively allocate resources and implement appropriate library technology initiatives
  • Incorporates ergonomics into technology facilities planning (placement of computer components, table height, chair adjustments)
  • Reviews and updates technology plan and goals annually.


Competency:  Develops strategies and processes for purchasing technology for the library

Associated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Prepares the budget for purchase recommendations based on the technology plan, factoring in total cost of ownership
  • Establishes and adheres to the library’s established rules and procedures for purchasing, including procurement rules and bidding processes
  • Considers open source software options
  • Prepares a Request for Proposal (RFP) to support sound purchase decisions
  • Identifies and negotiates with technology vendors to obtain products and equipment that best meet the needs of the users
  • Leverages consortia and province-wide procurement options
  • Maintains accurate records of transactions, specifications and standards
  • Establishes and adheres to a hardware replacement plan with a 3-5 year refresh cycle
  • Establishes and adheres to a software upgrade plan with a 3-5 year refresh cycle
  • Understands the processes for and implications of applying for grants from government, foundations and organizations to fund start-up costs associated with introducing new technology.


Competency:  Creates, evaluates and implements policies and procedures for library technology

Associated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Establishes network usage policies that balance convenience and usability with security concerns and wise stewardship of resources
  • Establishes and publishes acceptable use policies for public access computers and wireless networks
  • Establishes and publishes acceptable use policies for staff’s personal use of library’s computers, and sets parameters for social networking participation
  • Articulates and applies library policies and procedures on privacy, intellectual freedom and filtering as they relate to technology access and use
  • Understands the issues related to access to social networking sites and programs
  • Seeks staff and stakeholder feedback during policies and procedures development
  • Explains the rationale underlying library technology policies and procedures and communicates effectively in nontechnical language
  • Continuously evaluates the needs for new or revised policies and procedures relative to changing technologies
  • Develops, reviews and maintains technology procedure manuals
  • Creates and regularly evaluates disaster preparedness and recovery plans for library technology.


Competency:  Develops a training plan to ensure that staff and library users can use the newest technology when introduced

Associated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Articulates and demonstrates technical concepts and procedures to all levels of staff
  • Assesses technology trends that will affect the library and its users and advises all appropriate stakeholders in the organization
  • Aligns technology training with the library’s overall objectives and efforts for staff and user training
  • Develops and delivers training events, following principles of learning theory and interactivity
  • Assists staff and public users in the use of software applications
  • Identifies resources available to users for instruction and training on software applications
  • Provides opportunities for staff to explore new technologies in the library environment.

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