The Efficient Library
Ten Simple Changes That Save Time and Improve Service
by Elizabeth Barrera Rush
October 2020, 162pp, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-4408-6981-5
$50, £39, 44€, A69
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-6982-2
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Learn how to save time on routine tasks so you can spend more time programming, instructing, or innovating.

This guide helps librarians improve service with easy-to-follow strategies and techniques to make physical changes in library space and streamline procedures.

This librarian’s guide provides recommendations for quick and easy implementation of space-improving, time-saving practices. It also discusses the fundamentals of business and engineering management, public health, and other disciplines as they directly relate to the improvement of library service and management.

Detailing free and affordable adjustments to the library environment as well as information for those who will participate in a renovation or new construction project, the book features tips for creating functional, efficient, and productive spaces; procedures for streamlining routine tasks; methods for arranging materials in high demand; and ways of reconfiguring or planning spaces. It will provide librarians with a working knowledge of process management that will help them to strengthen their competence and build confidence to address and troubleshoot problems, freeing them to engage in more meaningful interactions and activities that benefit the community.


  • Provides simple and inconspicuous actions librarians can take to increase efficiency in library management and operations
  • Explains how to save time on routine, mundane tasks and reallocate it to programming, instruction, or innovation, which may lead to increased job satisfaction
  • Proposes safety and health considerations as reasons to improve tasks in the library, which may contribute to a long and healthy career
  • Shows how to create a more inviting and welcoming environment through attention to accessibility and organization
  • Empowers librarians to make or influence changes that impact their well-being
Elizabeth Barrera Rush, MSIS, worked in private and public school libraries for 19 years and is now library specialist in the library and textbook services department at Northside Independent School District, San Antonio. She earned her bachelor's degree in business administration at St. Mary's University and her MSIS at the University of Texas at Austin. Author of Bringing Genius Hour to Your Library: Implementing a Schoolwide Passion Project Program, she is a member of the American Library Association (ALA) and American Association of School Librarians (AASL) and is an ALA Spectrum Scholar and Champion.


"Librarians at every stage of their careers will come away with useful strategies to implement in their own workplaces."—Booklist Online, April 30, 2021
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