Director, Desk and Patron Experience

Chattanooga, Tennessee
Aug 03, 2017
Position Type
Tenured & Tenure-Track
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

University of Tennessee, Chattanooga

UTC Library

Director, Desk and Patron Experience

Position # 50007025


The UTC Library seeks a motivated, creative and user-focused professional to fill our Director, Patron Experience position at the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga (UTC). 

Library Description

In December 2014, UTC opened a 5-story 180,000 square foot library. The library staff comprises 21 librarians and 15 staff members, operates on an annual budget of over 3.5 million dollars, and possesses collection holdings of more than 700 unique monograph titles, 150 databases, and over 40,000 accessible online journals.  The new library provides a large information commons with 175+ public computers, 38 group study rooms, a media studio, 3 library instruction classrooms, a writing center, a cafe and a 24-hour study space. The library delivers a comprehensive range of public services, including proactive outreach, instruction, and reference. UTC Library is well equipped to support the research and scholarship needs of the UTC community.

Team Description

The Patron Experience Team is responsible for opening and closing the Library, managing the operations of the Check Out Desk and the Information Commons Desk, managing the public floor and student group rooms, as well as handling library accounts and fees, among other responsibilities. Team members create a welcoming atmosphere that sets the tone for library-wide operations.  The Team is comprised of 1 FTE faculty librarian, 5 FTE staff specialists, 3 PT staff specialists, and a small army of student assistants.  Current projects include a migration to ALMA/Primo, a review of room policies and fine-tuning room signage, and an analysis of questions received at the Check Out and Commons Desks.

Position Description

Reporting to the Department Head of Research and Public Services, the Director provides vision and management for the patron experience including oversight of the Information Commons and Check Out desks, group rooms, and the open study environment in the Library to ensure they meet and exceed the curricular and research needs of students and faculty.  The Director engages colleagues throughout the Library and Campus in the creation and maintenance of innovative services, activities and programs to benefit the patron experience. 

Position responsibilities include:

  • Lead departmental planning and policy development; set goals and plans for goal implementation and assessment.
  • Supervise, hire, orient, and train full-time and part-time staff members, and student assistants.
  • Coordinate cross-functional activities at the Information Commons and Check Out Desks, including the circulation of materials, answering research, information and technology questions, providing assistance with locating materials, and other patron needs.
  • Collaborate with colleagues to configure and manage the circulation system (Alma).
  • Design and collect quantitative and qualitative statistical data related to service desk transactions and building use.
  • Maintain user guides, implements software updates and coordinates web presence.
  • Develop workshops, tutorials, other learning and training objects to enhance customer service, critical thinking and information literacy skills in students and staff.
  • Develop, coordinate, and communicate building and circulation policies to the UTC community.
  • Stay current on emerging technologies and trends as they relates to the position, seek ways to improve and innovate check out services, research assistance, and building use that benefit students and staff members.
  • Available to open/close/cover Desk operations beyond regularly scheduled hours.
  • Foster a work environment that supports staff development and ensures quality, efficiency, and responsive patron services.

Public Service, Library, and University responsibilities include:

  • Participate in Research and Public Service Department initiatives.
  • Support public services operations as needed and appropriate in Instruction, Studio, and the Writing and Communication Center.
  • Participate in providing reference, liaison, and outreach services to University Community.
  • Participate in library-wide planning and committee work, including serving on the Library’s Management Council.
  • Participate in UTC governance, service, and be professionally active.
  • Conduct scholarship consistent with a tenure-track appointment.
  • Engage in continuing professional development.

Required Qualifications

  • Master's degree from an ALA-accredited program preferred; equivalent combination of graduate education and experience may be considered.
  • Demonstrated successful experience working with the public.
  • Proven ability to implement library services and programs.
  • Knowledge of current best practices relating to student information needs, usability issues, ADA compliance, technology skills, and library use patterns.
  • Demonstrated proficiency with academic software, such as Ex Libris, Blackboard, and Banner.
  • Experience with subject guide platforms, chat reference software and other commonly used library systems.
  • Experience as a successful project manager with a proven ability to organize, prioritize, and manage time, and complex, detailed work.
  • Strong customer service focus, a passion for the profession, and a deep commitment to service and outreach in an academic community.
  • Possess the initiative, flexibility, and creativity to manage projects both independently and as part of a team in a dynamic work environment.
  • Possess a positive attitude, be future-oriented, and embrace change.
  • Effective writing and oral communication skills.
  • Strong interpersonal skills evidenced by the ability to work cooperatively and maintain effective working relationships with colleagues, faculty, staff and students.

UTC Librarians are expected to participate in library-wide and system-wide planning, University governance and service, and to be professionally active.

Desirable Qualifications                    

  • Two or more years of supervisory experience in library, retail, or other customer-based environment.
  • Experience related to the assessment of library initiatives.
  • Experience engaging and serving diverse user populations and information environments.
  • Second master’s degree.


Salary: minimum is $50,000 commensurate with experience


This is a full-time, 12-month, tenure-track position with faculty status and academic rank. Appointment will be at the rank of Assistant or Associate professor.


  • 24 days of annual leave per year
  • 12 days of sick leave per year
  • 12 paid holidays and scheduled administrative closing days
  • 80% of health and life insurance paid by the state
  • Choice of retirement programs 
  • Relocation assistance 
  • Professional development funding
  • Tax-deferred income plans and more

Application Procedures

Interested applicants should prepare and submit the information below:

  • A letter of application/interest
  • A current curriculum vitae
  • The names, addresses, telephone numbers, and e-mail addresses of three references 

Review of applications begins on 08/29/2017 and continues until the position is filled. 

Applicants must submit applications electronically through the UTC Faculty Career Site. 

To apply, please follow this link:

Additional Information

The University of Tennessee, Chattanooga is an EEO/AA/Title VI/Title IX/Section 504/ADA/ADEA. All qualified applicants will receive equal consideration for employment and will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, physical or mental disability, or protected veteran status.