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Stack Management-Marston Science Library

Performance Guidelines for Public Service Student Employees


A. Projects friendly attitude encouraging patrons to seek assistance.

B. Displays willingness to communicate by initiating and maintaining eye contact.

C. Maintains pleasant demeanor through positive communications.

D. Acknowledges other patrons waiting for service. Stays aware of what other staff members are doing, especially during peak hours, in order to offer assistance as needed.


A. Greets patrons and faces them when speaking and listening.

B. Demonstrates a high degree of interest during the transaction.

C. Signals an understanding of patrons' needs through verbal or non-verbal confirmation such as nodding of the head, comments, or questions.

Listening and Inquiring

A. Listens in a receptive manner to patrons’ requests.

  •  Displays patience and allows patrons to fully state their needs before beginning to answer.

B. Confirms and clarifies patrons’ inquiries before assuming a response.

• Rephrases questions.

• Asks open-ended questions to encourage patrons to expand their inquiries. (“Can you give me more information?” “Could you let me know more about that?”)

• Asks clarifying questions to better determine the nature of the query (“What have you already tried?” “What type of materials are you searching for: Course reserves, books, journal articles?”) .

Information Provision/Referral

A. Strives to understand and meet patrons’ information needs.

B. Provides accurate, comprehensive information.

C. Provides patron-centered service.

D. Does not answer “no” without first thinking how else help may be provided. For example:

• “I’m sorry, that material is checked out. May I help you request the item?”

• “We haven’t received that issue, yet. May I get a librarian to help you find something else?”

E. Is knowledgeable about his/her job. Can identify which transactions require the approval of a supervisor, and who to ask for specific assistance. Consults with colleagues for information and guidance.

G. Refers patrons to relevant information sources and subject specialists.


A. Confirms that questions have been completely answered. For example:

• “Does this answer your question?”

• “Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

B. Before patrons leave the desk, anticipates possible referrals. For example:

• “If this book is not what you are looking for, let me know if I may get a librarian to help you find something better.”

C. Encourages patrons to return to the help desk for additional assistance, and checks to see if they have gone where directed or need assistance with library equipment.

D. Consults with a supervisor or other library staff members when additional help is needed to locate items or to offer circulation assistance.

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