Library public services staff have primarily focused on providing services through interactions with their users. Although service quality and customer satisfaction are important in the delivery of these services, the emphasis and nature of the work have often been influenced by a library-centric philosophy rather than a user-centric philosophy. The majority of tasks and responsibilities of access services staff have historically been based on the completion of transactions rather than on how these transactions impact user experience. This essay describes changes in organizational structure, employee training, and position responsibilities of Access Services staff at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan. These changes were made intentionally to better understand, identify, and respond to user needs. The ideas, processes, and structures presented in the article can be applied to all academic libraries, and we argue that the new focus of access services should be to improve the academic library experience.


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pp. 321-335
Launched on MUSE
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