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If You Don’t Do It, Somebody Else Will:. Why Librarians should become Content Managers. Presented by: Susan Tyrrell, B.A., M.L.S ECM Practitioner. Agenda. Introductions What is ECM? Typical responsibilities of an ECM practitioner/specialist Skills special librarians bring to ECM

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If you don t do it somebody else will

If You Don’t Do It, Somebody Else Will:

Why Librarians should become Content Managers

Presented by:

Susan Tyrrell, B.A., M.L.S

ECM Practitioner


  • Introductions

  • What is ECM?

  • Typical responsibilities of an ECM practitioner/specialist

  • Skills special librarians bring to ECM

  • Skill gaps and how to overcome them

  • Why ECM needs special librarians

  • Questions/Discussion


  • A bit about myself and what led me into a career in ECM

  • How many of you work in :

    • Traditional special libraries?

    • Records management?

    • Web content systems?

    • “Enterprise Content Management”?

What is ecm
What is ECM?

  • Current buzzword of choice for describing a variety of related disciplines

  • Enterprise Content Management

    • “the technologies used to capture, manage, store, preserve, and deliver content and documents related to organizational processes.”(AIIM, the ECM Association)

What is ecm cont d
What is ECM? (cont’d)

  • Focus is on “unstructured” information – content as opposed to data residing in data bases, systems

    • Documents – hard copy and electronic, including email, instant messaging

    • Images

    • Voice recordings

    • Video

    • Records

    • Web pages

Ecm related disciplines technologies
ECM-Related Disciplines/Technologies

  • Electronic Document Management (EDM)

  • Imaging

  • Records Management (RM)

  • Web Content Management (WCM)

  • Collaboration

Ecm related disciplines technologies cont d
ECM-Related Disciplines/Technologies (cont’d)

  • Business Process Management (BPM) aka Workflow

  • Electronic Forms Management

  • Digital Asset Management (DAM)

  • Digital Rights Management

  • Information Access/Enterprise Search

Content management systems are a lot like libraries
Content Management Systems are a Lot like Libraries

  • The content is stored in repositories - in some systems, even called “libraries”.

  • The content is “catalogued”.

  • The forms used to capture the metadata may resemble “catalogue” cards.

Content management systems are a lot like libraries cont d
Content Management Systems are a Lot like Libraries (cont’d)

  • Classification (taxonomies) may be applied to the content.

  • Controlled vocabularies (thesaurus) may be used for assigning descriptors to the content.

  • Content may be viewed or “checked out”.

Content management systems are a lot like libraries cont d1
Content Management Systems are a Lot like Libraries (cont’d)

  • Users can look up and retrieve the content they need, but they frequently need help from an expert who knows:

    • The breadth of the content

    • How the content is organized

    • Search and retrieval techniques

    • Alternative sources of information, where appropriate

The ecm practitioner is a lot like a librarian

Librarian (cont’d)

Determines classification, thesauri, cataloguing rules to be used.

Provides training & assistance in using library resources

Monitors library usage and trends

Identifies and targets potential new users

Actively promotes library’s role in the organization

ECM Practitioner

Determines taxonomies, metadata, etc. – “Content Governance”

Provides training & assistance in using system

Monitors system usage, trends

Identifies and targets potential new users

Actively promotes ECM system’s role in the organization

The ECM Practitioner is a Lot Like a Librarian!

But with some additional challenges
(cont’d)But with Some Additional Challenges

  • Technological

    • Software doesn’t always work properly

    • Integration/compatibility issues

  • Compliance

    • Security issues

    • Records management issues

  • User resistance

    • Must learn to use system

    • Assigning metadata can take time, thought

  • Less control over the content

Some hats worn by ecm practitioners specialists
Some Hats Worn by ECM Practitioners & Specialists (cont’d)

  • Project Manager/Project Team Member

  • Business Analyst

  • Governance Specialist

  • Systems Administrator

  • Support Analyst

  • Trainer

  • Technical Writer

  • Evangelist!

  • … and more

Project manager project team member
Project Manager/Project Team Member (cont’d)

  • Delivers ECM projects such as:

    • Product selection and pilots

    • Implementation in specific business areas

    • Customizations & enhancements

    • Upgrades

    • Integration with other systems, e.g. financial systems

    • Content migration from and to other systems

Business analyst
Business Analyst (cont’d)

  • Identifies ECM-related business problems and propose solutions:

    • Liaises between the business and IT department/vendor

    • Analyzes current processes; identify potential improvements

    • Determines and prioritizes user requirements

    • Assesses feasibility of potential solutions

    • Recommends improved processes

Governance specialist
Governance Specialist (cont’d)

  • Sets the rules for:

    • Types of content – in scope and out of scope

    • Types of users and access capabilities

    • Taxonomy

    • Metadata – how much, controlled vs. free format

    • Forms design and standardization

Systems administrator
Systems Administrator (cont’d)

  • Maintains the ECM system on a day to day basis:

    • Set ups new accounts, user permissions

    • Maintains controlled metadata

    • Monitors usage

    • Identifies and corrects usage problems

    • Provides preliminary trouble-shooting; reports and communicates outages

Support analyst
Support Analyst (cont’d)

  • Assists ECM users experiencing technical and usage problems

    • Trouble-shooting

    • Ad hoc training

    • Content availability

Trainer (cont’d)

  • Ensures that users know how to use the ECM system through

    • Training sessions for pilot and new implementations

    • Training for upgrades, enhancements, customization

    • Focused training for specialized groups

    • Informal sessions, e.g. "Lunch & Learns”

    • Ad hoc training as required

Technical writer
Technical Writer (cont’d)

  • Produces ECM Training Materials such as

    • Manuals – System-wide and specialized

    • Presentations

    • FAQ’s, “Tips & Tricks”

    • Web training courses

“Evangelist” (cont’d)

  • Actively promotes the benefits of using the ECM system through

    • Marketing initiatives

    • Tying in ECM with other systems and projects

    • Listening for ideas for improvements and acting on them

    • Identifying and mentoring “champions”

Traditional library skills how they fit into ecm
Traditional Library Skills: (cont’d)How they fit into ECM

  • “Technical Service Skills”

    • Knowledge of Classification Systems »Taxonomy Design

    • Cataloguing » Metadata assignment, data integrity control

    • Information Retrieval Skills » knowledge and experience with search engines; how to assign metadata so that information can be retrieved quickly and accurately

Traditional library skills how they fit into ecm1
Traditional Library Skills: (cont’d)How They Fit into ECM

  • “Public Service Skills”

    • Reference Interview Skills>> useful in systems selection design and in support

    • Training/Orientation skills

    • Marketing skills

Where are our skill gaps
Where are Our Skill Gaps? (cont’d)

  • Project Management

    • Scheduling

    • Scope definition

    • Change management

  • Information Technology

    • IT Infrastructure

    • Networks

    • IT jargon

How can these gaps be bridged
How Can These Gaps Be Bridged? (cont’d)

  • Courses

    • Local institutions

    • Seminars (for-profit and non-profit)

    • Online e.g. AIIM, the ECM Association

  • Coworkers in IT

  • Reading & research

  • Practice!

Why consider a ecm career
Why Consider a ECM Career? (cont’d)

  • Varied job opportunities

    • All types of organizations using ECM

    • Many types of jobs – implementation, support, training, etc.

  • Long-term stability

    • ECM is now a “mature” but still developing technology

    • Many systems to support, change, migrate

    • Content continues to explode!

  • Field is wide open in terms of qualifications expected

  • Opportunities to use and further develop our unique skills

Why does ecm need us
Why Does ECM Need Us? (cont’d)

  • ECM projects frequently fail! Why?

  • ECM implementations often led by IT personnel, who:

    • May favour products for technical, rather than business reasons.

    • Don’t understand content governance issues, information retrieval challenges

    • May not use ECM once it is implemented and don’t understand user frustrations.

    • May consider technological fixes only.

Why does ecm need us1
Why Does ECM Need Us? (cont’d)

  • Business users may have input, but they:

    • May not understand ECM’s full capabilities.

    • May not have time, interest or skill for content governance.

    • May not have the “big picture” of the organization’s information needs.

  • Librarians have the skills that can bridge the gap!

Parting advice
Parting Advice… (cont’d)

  • ECM is a natural career path for librarians – especially special librarians!

  • If your organization has an ECM initiative or an ECM system in place, get involved. It needs you!

  • An ECM system without knowledgeable people providing governance and support is like a library without a librarian…

    • Over time, not very useable!

Parting advice1
Parting Advice… (cont’d)

  • Don’t be afraid that you’re not expert – there aren’t many of them out there ….

And if you don t do it
…And if you don’t do it… (cont’d)

Somebody else will …..

(And probably not as well.)

Questions? (cont’d)

Any additional questions or comments, or a copy of this presentation, please contact me at:

[email protected]

Thank you!

Related articles
Related Articles (cont’d)

  • “TheLibrarian As CM Leader” by Lynn Blumenstein, Library Journal, Volume 130, Issue 15 (15 September 2005), p. 38

  • “Enterprise Content Management” by Debbie Schachter, Wired West, Volume 6, No. 2 (Winter 2003) http://units.sla.org/chapter/cwcn/wwest/v6n2/schachter.htm

Related articles cont d
Related Articles (cont’d) (cont’d)

  • “Corporate Librarians & Their Role inEnterprise Content Management” by Susan Stearns, presentation at the Internet Conference & Exhibition for Librarians & Information Managers, November 3-5, 2003. www.infotoday.com/il2003/presentations/Stearns.pps

Useful websites
Useful Websites (cont’d)

  • AIIM, the ECM Association: www.aiim.org

  • e-content Institutewww.econtentinstitute.org –Toronto based organization, sponsors “Information Highways” conference

Useful websites cont d
Useful Websites (cont’d) (cont’d)

  • The Enterprise Content Management Blog:http://feeds.feedburner.com/ecmblog

  • Gartner: www.gartner.com for trends in ECM players, ECM adoption by organizations, etc.