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Community Feedback Wanted for Library’s Strategic Plan

Provided by Prince William County

The Prince William County Library System is launching a strategic plan process that will provide direction to the libraries over the next five years. The process includes the discovery, engagement, development and implementation phases.

“The end goal is to make sure that the services we are providing to our community are the best they can be,” said Library Director Deborah Wright. ”

During the discovery period, which will run between August and October of this year, the library system will gather input from community members, the Library Board of Trustees, members of different library groups, elected officials and other stakeholders in order to determine baseline demographics and analyze best trends and practices. A SWOT analysis, which is a tool to examine the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats an organization faces, will also be conducted.

As part of the discovery phase, Wright said that the public will be able to provide input by answering questions online or in person at all of the library branches. The questions will come out once a week.

During the engagement phase, between November and January, stakeholder focus groups will provide insight and perspectives on the needs of the community. In addition, one-on-one interviews will take place with non-library users and community leaders. A Library Advisory Committee will be established to review results and prepare solutions for the next phase in the strategic plan process; and a comprehensive analysis and results from the first two phases will be presented to the Library Board.

The development phase will occur between February and July of 2018, and it will include compiling results from the surveys, the various analyses, focus groups and trustee guidance. The Library Advisory Committee and library staff will then work to develop areas of strategic focus. Once those areas of focus are finalized, library staff will produce a strategic plan document to present to the Library Board of Trustees at its July 2018 meeting. Once the Library Board approves the strategic plan, staff will begin the organizational process to implement it. The plan will be updated annually.

People can follow along with the library’s 2018-2023 Strategic Plan process online at pwcgov.org/library.

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