Administration & Office Support
Library assistants or technicians assist library patrons, organise library materials and information, and perform administrative tasks.
What does a Library Assistant/Technician do?
Library assistants or technicians help with all aspects of running a library. They assist library patrons, organise library materials and information, and perform administrative tasks.
As a library assistant or technician, you would:
- help library users to find the information
- show users how to access library catalogues, reference materials and electronic resources
- answer telephone or email enquiries
- check materials in and out
- sort returned items and file them or return to storage areas
- process and catalogue new materials for inclusion in the collection
- maintain databases and records
- arranging repair of damaged materials
- help arrange and participate in story times, reading programs, author talks and other special programs.
Key skills and interests
To become a library assistant/technician, you would need:
- an interest in books and reading
- good interpersonal skills
- a well-organised approach to your work
- the ability to work as part of a team
- good computer skills
- a keen eye for detail.
Working hours and conditions
You would usually work a standard number of hours per week. In a public or academic library, this would likely include shifts on weekends or evenings. Part-time or flexible work should be readily available.
You may have to be on your feet for a good part of your working day.
How to become an Library Assistant/Technician?
Entry Level Education
Some library assistant roles may require no formal qualifications. Library technicians usually need to complete a VET qualification recognised by the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA). If you have completed a course in library and information studies which is not accredited by the ALIA, you can be assessed for Library Technician membership through the Association's widened eligibility process. Assessment is on an individual basis, and considers your qualifications, knowledge of library and information services, relevant employment and continuing education.
Employment of library technicians and assistants is projected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations.
Because of changes to technology and budget constraints, more libraries might hire technicians and assistants to provide library services instead of traditional librarians. Therefore, demand for library technicians and assistants may increase.