Employment opportunities

Position description

Position title: Library Associate -- Periodicals

Reports to: Technical Services Librarian

Position summary:

The Library Associate – Periodicals oversees the acquisition, control and maintenance of the periodicals collection. Responsibilities include the following: define, prioritize and oversee the day-to-day activities and operations of the unit; develop and implement unit procedures, policies and goals; collect, analyze and report data related to unit functions and collections; monitor the periodicals budget; maintain proficiency in the integrated library system modules and other systems critical to unit operations; hire, train and supervise student employees assigned to the unit. A Library Associate is an expert-level paraprofessional position requiring specialized knowledge and skills to manage, with minimal direction, a unit within the library, carrying out complex technical tasks and exercising independent judgment to develop guidelines and solve problems impacting unit operations.

Mission and strategic plan

The position supports the academic success of Saint Martin’s students, which is central to the University’s mission. This position oversees a core function of the library—acquiring and managing periodicals and other subscription resources for the library. The Periodicals Manager plays a significant, albeit behinds-the-scenes, role in providing students with access to academic resources they need to develop “the ability to communicate and pursue ideas” and to expand their critical thinking skills. Or course, these functions are equally critical to faculty who need a rich collection of easily accessible journals to develop their courses and pursue scholarly research. In terms of the strategic plan, this position plays a central role in the library accelerating migration from print to online journals, a move that enables us to better support online and related forms of educational environments .

Level of supervision and supervisory responsibility

General Supervision: The employee carries out recurring assignments without specific instruction. The supervisor intercedes and provides direction for only new or unusual problems which involve deviations from normal policies, procedures and work methods. The employee’s work is reviewed upon completion and only periodically to verify compliance with policies and procedures.

Responsibilities and essential functions


  • Oversees the periodicals unit of O’Grady Library in compliance with organizational rules, policies and procedures. Coordinates operations and services of the unit, including serials acquisitions, collection control and maintenance, electronic resources support, student supervision and special projects.
  • Formulates and implements unit procedures, policies and long- and short-term goals. Identifies and analyzes complex problems impacting goals and policies and recommends solutions. Works closely with the library director, faculty librarians and staff in other units to coordinate priorities.
  • Oversees and maintains the serials module of the integrated library system. Trains staff on use of the module, maintains documentation of local procedures and configurations, and ensures effective integration of the system in unit workflow and planning. Coordinates the development of codes and record standards to ensure the effective use of the system for managing the collection and generating management reports.
  • Uses serials and acquisitions modules to create, modify, and maintain check-in, holdings and fiscal records for serials titles, including print, microform and electronic formats.
  • Prepares detailed financial, statistical and collection reports needed for library planning and decision-making or for inclusion in reports to local and national library organizations and assessment bodies.
  • Creates and maintains training manuals and documentation of procedures and practices for periodicals acquisitions, collection control and maintenance.


  • Performs ordering, receiving and fiscal control of the periodicals collections, using serials and acquisitions modules of the integrated library system to create, modify and maintain holdings, receiving and fiscal records for serials in all formats.
  • Functions as the library’s principal contact with serials vendors. Establishes good vendor relations, monitoring performance, implementing new vendor services as appropriate and managing migration to new vendors as needed. Maintains working knowledge of vendor ordering systems, policies and contracts.
  • Coordinates and monitors the periodicals and electronic resources budget, preparing annual budget recommendations based on cost projections, verifying and processing invoices, reconciling expenditures and generating financial reports. Collaborates with the university’s finance office, library director, the library’s administrative assistant, and faculty librarians as appropriate.
  • Orders new periodicals titles, reviews and approves renewals and prepares cancellations in consultation with library director and faculty librarians as appropriate. Provides detailed bibliographic and cost analyses used to make collection development decisions. Prepares purchase and retention recommendations.
  • Works closely with vendors and publishers to resolve complex payment and receipt problems.

Collection control and maintenance

  • Receives and tracks serial publications in all formats. Oversees serials check-in, database upkeep and collection maintenance functions, providing training, monitoring work and evaluating performance.
  • Monitors and processes cessations, title changes, format changes and other publishing irregularities. Works with cataloging staff to resolves issues in the maintenance of bibliographic records.
  • Coordinates access to and physical maintenance of the periodicals collections, including processing, shelving, stack maintenance, routing and preparation of bindery shipments.
  • Coordinates receipt of serials gifts and donations, including dispersal of unwanted materials. Manages exchange of material with other libraries.


  • Expert knowledge of serials control and periodicals practices and an understanding of the relevance of these to the library’s and university’s mission.
  • Understanding of the serials publishing industry, including publishing and pricing models of serials in various formats.
  • Ability to plan, organize workflow, prioritize tasks, document procedures and meet internally and externally imposed deadlines.
  • Ability to analyze complex data, to prepare well-supported reports and recommendations, and to manage a unit budget.
  • Competence in using integrated library systems (Innovative Interfaces preferred), online library catalogs and databases, web search engines, print and online verification tools, online serials management and ordering tools, and standard office software (Microsoft Word, Excel, and Outlook).
  • Capacity to learn new software and other technologies.
  • Effectively supervises student employees, assigning and directing their work, establishing performance standards, and providing thorough training.
  • Attention to detail
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Solves complex problems using intelligence, creativity, common sense, collaboration, hard work, and persistence as appropriate.
  • Manages multiple projects and responsibilities effectively.
  • Adapts readily to changing needs, conditions, and work responsibilities.
  • Accepts personal responsibility for the quality and timeliness of his or her work and can be relied upon to achieve results with little need for oversight.
  • Builds and maintains student, faculty, and staff satisfaction with the resources and services offered by the library and University.
  • Develops constructive working relationships characterized by respect, cooperation, collaboration, and communication.
  • Understands the University’s mission, the relevance of the library and instructional technologies to this mission, as well as the institution’s organizational structure; uses this knowledge to inform decisions and identify actions that support organizational goals.
  • Must be supportive of a Catholic, Benedictine philosophy of education.

Minimum qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Three years’ progressively responsible serials experience
  • Availability to work evenings or weekends as needed
  • Successfully pass a criminal background check

The principles of the Catholic Benedictine tradition, equal employment opportunity, and nondiscrimination are fundamental to the mission, goals, and objectives of Saint Martin’s University. The University does not discriminate in employment or in the delivery or administration of its educational programs, policies, scholarship and loan programs, athletic or other University programs on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, race, color, religion (except as a bona fide occupational qualification for certain select positions), marital status, national or ethnic origin, military or veteran status, age, or disability.

Students or employees with concerns or complaints about discrimination on the basis of sex in employment or an education program or activity, or any other inquiries related to the University's non-discrimination policy, may contact the following individual:

Cynthia Johnson
Director of Human Resources/Title IX Coordinator
5000 Abbey Way SE, Lacey WA 98503

Consistent with the requirements of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the regulations adopted under that law, the University has designated the above individual as the University's Title IX Officer, responsible for coordinating the University's Title IX compliance. Individuals may also contact the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, 915 2nd Avenue, Room 3310 Seattle, WA 98174-1099, Telephone: (206) 220-7900, TDD: (206) 220-7907.