The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the improvement of library service quality in public libraries.
The paper is based on two complementary studies and includes 58 interviews with managers, librarians and adult educators in Sweden and England. Together, they cover public libraries, study centres and adult education on an arena defined by stakeholders of the local municipality, county library, customer, governmental control systems and regional development council.
Suggested improvements show that the potential for improving service quality of the Swedish library sector is related to the strength of its market orientation and to its ability to change the librarian's role. A change in the librarian role to a service‐oriented and retail‐experienced librarian, is reflected by the ability of the librarian to adapt to the process‐oriented roles of the contact creator, the mentor/coach and the inspirer.
The market orientation of the library services, customer orientation, together with a change to a retail‐experienced librarian role, are actions identified for improving library customer value. The combination of market orientation including new customer groups and a new librarian role contribute to the improvement of library service quality.
Hallberg, A. and Sipos‐Zackrisson, K. (2010), "Improvements of public library service quality: Perspective of libraries and study centres", The TQM Journal, Vol. 22 No. 1, pp. 89-100. https://doi.org/10.1108/17542731011009649Download as .RIS
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