In Media Res: Transitioning Streaming Media Reserves Without a Succession Plan

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Norton, Brynne and Jenny Cotton. “In Medias Res: Transitioning Streaming Media Reserves without a Succession Plan.” Presented at the MLA-DLA Annual Conference, Virtual, May 5, 2021.


This presentation will demonstrate the value of succession planning and documentation when dealing with a service transition or planning for the future, since documentation is a key factor in ensuring continuity through changes to staffing or services. Using materials to facilitate participant engagement, we will walk you through steps you can take to begin developing a succession plan and creating necessary documentation to capture institutional knowledge. Changes to the Streaming Media Reserves services at the University of Maryland College Park will serve as a real life example in employing these strategies. In summer 2019, Streaming Media Reserves transitioned to a new department and by the end of the fall semester, the employee who ran the service left the university, leaving behind limited documentation. Institutional knowledge was rebuilt as Streaming Media Reserves and was brought into alignment with Course Reserves in terms of guidelines, procedures, and the unexpected growth of the service due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Join us to discuss how succession planning and documentation can be implemented in your library.