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Library Assistant

Requisition ID:  1030

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Open Ended
Posted Date:  06-Nov-2019

We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.


Salary: £18,709 - £19,133 (pro-rata per annum)

Closing Date: 20 November 2019



We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.


 Required to work in the Technical Services section of the University Library providing support in the areas of; acquisitions, cataloguing, subscriptions, collection management, open access, research publications and repository management.


You will work with colleagues across library services, Professional Services and faculty so good interpersonal and communication skills are essential as is the ability to work in a busy library back-office team. You must have a good eye for detail and the capacity to prioritise competing demands with minimal supervision.


The post is part-time (18.5 hrs per week). All day Monday and Tuesday, half day on Wednesday.


Informal enquiries may be made to Pamela Dodds ( 0191 2087589 or Amanda Boll ( - Tel: 0191 2082921.


Key Accountabilities

  • Search/utilise external bibliographic databases and websites to:
    • Find additional or missing details for library orders to ensure that enough bibliographic information is sent with an order to correctly identify it.
    • Download bibliographic records for resources in collections.
  • Edit bibliographic records which have been downloaded from databases to ensure that details such as the date of publication and edition are correct before the record is added to the catalogue.
  • Raise orders for library resources using Library purchasing processes and systems.
  • Receipt orders for materials dispatched by library suppliers. Check that correct and undamaged items have been sent, then reconcile invoice details for these items. Check licenses to confirm library usage or restrictions for Library use.
  • Assist with updating and maintaining reports from suppliers on ordered materials not yet received.  Ensure problems with orders are identified and action taken.
  • Utilise external bibliographical databases (Library of Congress, Research Libraries UK and OCLC) to download bibliographical records for new books.
  • Routine classification of library acquisitions using the Dewey Decimal Classification system and knowledge of library subject arrangement, to enable access to library resources for users.
  • Add local information to individual records on the Library Management System such as loan category and classification number.
  • Accurately check and if necessary amend and enrich the bibliographic references of publications submitted by University staff to the University’s publications database, using relevant abstracts and indexes, ensuring all publications are cited correctly and meet standards set by the Library.
  • Participate in the University’s electronic and print theses procedures, including receipt and cataloguing, checking paperwork, liaison with staff in the Student Progress Office and the British Library. As well as other administrative tasks associated with the University’s e-thesis repository.
  • Upload open access papers deposited into the University’s institutional repository, ensuring compliance with copyright legislation.
  • Assist in the annual entry of invoice details of journal renewal subscriptions onto the Library Management System, to be checked by senior Technical Services staff.
  • Daily recording and receipt of print newspapers and serials on the Library Management System. Shelving of new issues; collating, recording and despatching of serials to Print Services for binding; repairs to serials; receiving bound serial volumes and updating appropriate catalogue records; collation of serials statistics for Library performance standard.
  • Check and update monthly e-journal holdings reports to ensure subscriptions are accurately recorded.
  • Process claims for overdue serial issues and send these to subscription agents. Update publishing information about serials on the Library Management System.
  • Record Library performance measurement statistics to help to ensure that Library standards are maintained.
  • Write new parts and update existing parts of the Technical Service procedures manual.
  • Depending on the duties assigned liaison may be required with teams within the Library and the University as well as with library suppliers and publishers.
  • Working under minimum supervision, the post holder is required to exercise significant initiative, make informed and knowledge-based decisions, referring queries to supervisors where necessary and maintain a high degree of accuracy
  • Saturday and evening rota duties on the Library Customer Services desk may be required. 


The Person (Essential)


Knowledge, Skills and Experience


  • Good IT skills, including using Microsoft Office packages, highly developed web searching skills and information searching/retrieval skills, using library specific IT applications.
  • Good interpersonal, organisational and communication skills.
  • Ability to work independently using one’s own initiative whilst working effectively as a team member.
  • Good customer care skills.
  • Experience of working in a library environment.
  • Mobility and physical fitness consistent with the need to handle large numbers of books.
  • Ability to work under pressure.
  • Previous experience of working in a customer focused environment. 


Attributes and Behaviour


  • Chooses communication tools appropriately e.g. selective use of emails and other channels of communication.
  • Uses face to face communication regularly.


  • Shares relevant and useful information with others.      
  • Supportive of team decisions Respects the value that different views bring to the team. 

 Planning and Organising              

  • Plans workload and tasks in a systematic way.
  • Ensures that others know how process and systems work.

 Delivering services            

  • See other departments and colleagues as “customers” and follows through on enquiries and requests.
  • Co-operate with others in achieving targets.
  • Strives to deliver high quality results.




  • Minimum of five GCSEs or equivalent at Grade C or above.


  • City and Guilds Library Assistant’s Certificate and/or NVQ level 2 equivalent.




Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains staff from all sectors of society.  We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent.  We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.

Requisition ID: 1030