SLA has chosen the theme of “be more” for the group’s 2018 Annual Conference. It’s actually “Bmore” in reference to the show’s Baltimore location, but the concept of being more is valid as librarianship continues to evolve.
Those of you planning to attend SLA 2018, June 11-13 at the Baltimore Convention Center, will have plenty to see, hear and learn while there with opportunities to earn continuing education credits and to network and socialize with peers, including LAC Group employees.
Special library topics of growing importance
The agenda for SLA 2018 encompasses a wide range of topics that are increasingly vital in law, medicine, business and finance and other special library settings. Saturday and Sunday features courses for those needing continuing education credits or certification.
Sessions include competitive intelligence (CI), research and development, diversity issues and much more. We’re looking forward to the competitive intelligence track, because this is an important and growing research service area for LAC Group. Other topic areas we’re watching are the concept of integrated / embedded librarians and technology and data topics.
Integrated and embedded librarians
When the library is no longer a physical place, which has become the new norm in law firms and other special library settings, the function becomes a knowledge and information service—service that can essentially be performed anywhere. The more directly integrated librarians become with the people and groups they serve, the more integral they’ll be to the organization.
Sessions covering this topic include:
- Don’t Just Be Integrated, Be Integral—This panel discussion promises to deliver “advice on developing an embedment strategy, learn techniques for communicating value to senior management, and get tips on how to secure advocacy and budgetary support.”
- How Embedded Librarians Demonstrate and Communicate Their Value—This session looks to be about communicating value through metrics.
Special library technology and data topics
The line between IT (information technology) and IM (information management) is blurring almost to the point of being wiped out. Librarians have always stayed abreast of library systems; they now need to demonstrate data proficiency and become familiar with other systems in place at their jobs, such as content management and knowledge management applications.
Sessions in this area include:
- AI and the Law Library or “Will I be replaced by a robot?”—Panel speakers will discuss this growing concern as machine learning, predictive analytics and other advanced technologies make inroads.
- Data Management Planning: Case Studies—This session will cover “aspects of data management planning including types of data, responsibilities for/ownership of data, backup, storage and preservation.”
LAC Group participation at SLA 2018
LAC Group will be exhibiting at booth No. 336, and we encourage you stop by and learn more about us. As a growing organization, we offer a steady flow of jobs, from entry level to senior management. Some of them are temporary or part-time, but often those positions lead to something more permanent and fulfilling. You will learn when you stop by our booth that we offer a viable, sustainable career path for library and information science professionals.
We’ll be giving away freebies, as every good show exhibitor does, but perhaps the best freebie will be the advice our librarians and information professionals will give you on what it’s like working at LAC and their answers to your questions. And you can enter our raffle to win one of three $100 Amazon gift cards.
Grow your professional network in special libraries
Several LAC Group employees will be attending the event this year for their own networking and professional development purposes. Since we have an office in nearby Rockville, Maryland, several people who work with federal government clients will be at the show, including Deputy Director Jocelyn McNamara of our federal team:
“I am most looking forward to the East Coast Chapters Reception. It’s an opportunity to catch up with colleagues, some of whom I only see once a year. It’s an evening event, so I like that it’s a little more informal — people tend to “let their hair down” so it’s a great way to connect and network in a more relaxed setting.”
Meet LAC employees while developing new librarianship skills
As for other LAC Group researchers, librarians and other professionals, their attendance at the conference is about continuing education and professional development. Here’s where you may find some of them:
Audrey McKay on our federal team says,
“I’m planning on attending ‘Emerging Technologies in Government Libraries: 3D Printing, Virtual Reality, and Beyond!’ as I like learning about these new technologies. I’m looking forward to hearing how they’re already being used in libraries and how we think they’ll be used in the future.”
Nathan Rosen, legal researcher and senior law librarian embedded at one of our law firm clients, identified sessions on CI metrics and best practices, the session mentioned earlier about embedded librarians telling their story to demonstrate and communicate their value, and a session on information ROI.
Kat Henderson, a legal researcher on our virtual team, will be participating in the Information Outlook Advisory business meeting:
“Rather than having a traditional business meeting, we are inviting our colleagues to a hands-on session where we will learn what they want to read and/or write about in upcoming issues. I think this session will be invaluable in determining what topics our colleagues will make the time to read in the coming months.”
We hope everyone has a great time at SLA 2018 and we wish the Association a very successful event this year.
For more information, visit SLA 2018 conference website.