The South Pasadena Public Library has updated its Strategic Plan to guide library services for the next 5 years. The “Library Strategic Plan, 2017-2022” was presented to the South Pasadena City Council during their May 3, 2017 meeting by Consultant Joe Matthews and Library Director Steve Fjeldsted, who also fielded their questions.
The most recent Library Strategic Planning process began in 2016 after the completion of the “Library Operations Study”, also authored by Mr. Matthews. The Strategic Planning process was undertaken to set the direction for the Library based on the “real life” needs of the community, as expressed in the completed survey forms that were received from more than 600 respondents. To obtain the feedback, emails were sent to thousands of recipients in the Library patron database and articles were posted on the Library and Friends of the Library websites. In addition, dozens of interviews were conducted with members of the Library staff, Friends of the Library, and Library Board of Trustees, as well as stakeholders and culture bearers from throughout the city. In all, more than 700 individuals provided input into the Library Strategic Plan.
A Library Strategic Planning Community Forum was conducted on the evening of October 20, 2016. Residents, including a representative from every club and organization in South Pasadena, were invited to the event, along with Library staff, and members of the Friends and the Trustees. In customary fashion, the Hospitality Committee of the Friends of the South Pasadena Public Library provided refreshments. At the meeting facilitated by Mr. Matthews, participants were asked for their insights into the community and its Library needs, and to assist in sharpening the vision for the Library.
The ”Library Strategic Plan, 2017-2022” was approved by the Library Board of Trustees at their January 12, 2017 Board Meeting. Various aspects of the Draft Strategic Plan and the wide-reaching effort itself were discussed during numerous Trustees meetings during 2016. Now that the “Library Strategic Plan, 2017-2022” has been finalized by its presentation to the City Council on May 3, it will be posted on the Library and Friends websites. A copy of the Strategic Plan will also be mailed to each and every South Pasadena community organization and a summary brochure will be developed and widely distributed from the Library and via other select locations around town.
Many of the Library improvements called for in the Strategic Plan, such as the improvement of the Library’s broadband connection and its Wi-Fi coverage, have already been implemented. And 16 new computers have been ordered as well. Other enhancements will be in motion soon. Still others will need to be spread out over the next five years. As stated under “Fiscal Realities” of the Strategic Plan, their success is dependent upon consistent funding and staffing.
Some ‘big ticket’ items, such as the addition of a sufficient number of dedicated parking spaces and an expansion into the current-day Senior Center upon the possible completion of the proposed multi-generational Community Center, would require greatly augmented budgetary considerations. Meeting the objectives of the Strategic Plan will enable the Library to meet the needs of the community and better position itself for continued success in the future.