December PLSR Highlights

Upcoming events

  • Members of the Steering Committee will update the community on their work and the chairs of the Human Resources and Funding subcommittees will share what their groups have been working on at the December 19th Virtual Q&A, 12-1pm.

Steering Committee

  • A timeline for the activities the Steering Committee will undertake to get to their recommendation to DPI was updated.
  • Two groups of collaborators will be involved in the above activities. One group, the Core Recommendation Collaborators (CRC), will be a small group of individuals who will assist with the drafting of the recommendations.  The other will be a larger group that will work on refining the draft with the Steering Committee.  The Steering Committee will review a job description and application for these groups at their January meeting.
  • Roles for above timeline were also considered. WiLS will continue as the project managers, but will not be involved in designing processes, facilitating meetings, or any decision-making.  They will be taking more of an administrative support role and will act as a resource for the results of the workgroups.  Russell Consulting will be the facilitators for this phase.  The Steering Committee will have an increased role in writing, creating agendas, etc. The Steering Committee voted to have WiLS and Russell Consulting bring proposals for this work to the January meeting.
  • Two minor revisions were made to the “Expectations of Steering Recommendations” document.
  • The committee briefly reviewed three documents of information provided by systems that will be used to inform the development of its recommendations. The documents are part of the December 7, 2017 meeting materials and are PLSR System Background and County Relationships, System Director Duties Covered in Workgroup Models, and System Director Duties Related to Administration.
  • The focus group process is being coordinated by Russell Consulting. Three focus group sessions will be held: in the Northeast part of the state on January 9th, in the Northwest on January 10th and in the South Central part of the state on January 11th.  Russell Consulting will present information and initial observations about the focus groups to the Steering Committee at their January 18, 2017 meeting.  Based on the results of the focus groups, Russell Consulting will develop a survey that will go out to the public library and library system community from February 12th to 26th.


PLSR Steering Committee Q & A – Tuesday, December 19 12 – 1 PM

Bring your lunch and your questions to the upcoming Q & A session where members from the PLSR Steering Committee will update the community on their process and the Chairs of the Human Resources and Funding subcommittees will share what their teams have been working on.

There will be time to answer questions, especially those related to Steering work and subcommittees, but questions on other topics are welcome. You are encouraged to submit questions prior to the meeting using the Contact Form.

Here’s how you can join the meeting:

From your computer, tablet or smartphone.

You can also dial in using your phone.
United States: +1 (786) 535-3211
Access Code: 212-659-509

PLSR Community Update – Additions to the PLSR site

We would like to thank all of you that have been asking such great questions and offering your feedback. It is helping the workgroups strengthen their models and the Steering Committee to understand the needs of the library community.

If you would like to see the sorts of questions that have been asked and answered, look at the new section of the PLSR site, What Has Already Been Asked. We have just added the General/Overview section that covers process and Steering Committee questions. Using real feedback from the community, we will keep this page up to date with the questions that are asked of the workgroups and Steering Committee. While it may not be comprehensive, it will reflect the most recent and most commonly asked questions.

You can ask questions and offer feedback to specific workgroups, the project managers or the Steering Committee using the Contact Form.

November PLSR Highlights

Upcoming events

  • There will be a December 19th Q&A from 12-1 PM which will focus on the process change related to including stakeholders and the subcommittees’ work.

Steering Committee

  • The Steering Committee would encourage everyone to provide specific feedback on the models now, as this is the time to do that as the workgroups are tweaking things. Feedback can be submitted using the Contact Form on the PLSR website and the workgroup WLA presentations can found on the site as well.
  • The group reviewed the Expectations of the Steering Committee Report document and further discussed what process they will undertake to get to recommendations.
  • The Steering Committee approved a proposal for a set of focus groups with library directors. Held in late December and early January, the focus groups will be asked questions around governance, administration, and accountability.  Russell Consulting, who will be conducting the focus groups, will also be selecting participants based on those who complete a selection form.
  • At the December meeting, the Steering Committee will consider information related to the focus groups, more updates from the subcommittees, results from the system director duties survey, results from the county relationships survey, and work on developing next steps from the process.


**Important** Workgroups Need Your Feedback!

Now is the time for you to offer feedback to the workgroups about their models.  If you have questions or concerns, please share them with the workgroups as soon as you can.  In mid-February, they will be presenting a final draft version of their model to the Steering Committee, so it’s important that they get your feedback in order to finalize these model drafts.

If you have feedback or questions about particular workgroup ideas, you can use the contact form to communicate with specific workgroups. You are also encouraged to share your thoughts with the Steering Committee, who can be reached through the contact form as well. While your feedback is welcome at any time, the sooner you offer it, the sooner the workgroup can use it to make their ideas better.

Each of the seven workgroups provided updates about their models at WLA in October. Session video recordings along with the PowerPoint presentations and one-page overviews are available on the PLSR website. If you weren’t able to attend or if you just need to refresh your memory, we encourage you to spend some time learning about the work that has been done and what is in front of the workgroups.

If you’re not sure if the workgroups have already been asked your question, take a look at the Questions That Have Been Asked page. It has questions that have been asked of the workgroups, Steering Committee, and project managers and while not comprehensive, it does contain the more recent and most frequently asked questions.

Materials added the week of 11/6/2017


  • Minutes from 10/3 CE-Consulting workgroup meeting
  • Agenda for 11/14 CE-Consulting workgroup meeting
  • Minutes and Recording for the 11/1 ILS/ILL workgroup meeting
  • Agenda for 11/14 Technology workgroup meeting

Steering Committee:

  • Recording for the 11/8 HR Subcommittee meeting

PLSR Community Update – WLA Workgroup sessions available online

Thanks to everyone that was able to attend the Workgroup sessions at WLA at the Kalahari. There were many people that went multiple sessions and some even made it to all seven! The workgroups deeply appreciate the community’s interest and dedication to staying informed and offering their feedback. The comments and questions were incredibly thoughtful and helpful.

Of course, it was not possible for everyone in the library community to attend any or all of the sessions. Therefore, with the help of Mark Ibach of the South Central Library System, each session was video recorded. These recordings, along with session PowerPoints and one-page overviews are now available on the PLSR website, all on a single page, as well as on each workgroup page.

The questions asked and the feedback given during the sessions will help the workgroups as they finalize their work. If you have feedback or questions about particular workgroup ideas, you can use the contact form to communicate with specific workgroups. You are also encouraged to share your thoughts with the Steering Committee, who can be reached through the contact form as well.

We also heard that it would be helpful to know what questions have already been asked (and possibly answered). So, we’ve created a new feature on the PLSR site that will share questions that have been asked of the workgroups, Steering Committee, and project managers. The list is not comprehensive but does contain the more recent and most frequently asked questions.

October PLSR Highlights

Upcoming events

  • Each Workgroup will share updates on their models at WLA in Wisconsin Dells. These sessions will be video recorded and made available on the PLSR website, along with the slides from the sessions. Steering Committee members will be at a booth in the Exhibits Hall for the library community to ask questions, chat about the project, and offer feedback. Schedule for sessions and booth is available.

Steering Committee

  • Steering members recorded questions, concerns, and feedback at each of the regional meetings. This feedback has been compiled and will be used by the Committee to ensure questions are being answered and concerns are being carefully considered.
  •  The Committee discussed a Draft plan for PLSR Steering Committee information gathering discussions. The plan suggests that there be focus groups facilitated by an outside consultant. These will consist of a representative group of directors from around the state to get library input about their ideas and concerns related to overall administration, funding and governance that will be part of the Steering Committee recommendations. The Steering Committee will discuss details of this plan at their November Steering meeting. The Committee approved a motion to have the Project Manager start discussions with an outside facilitator for the focus groups.
  • The Committee also discussed a shift in their activities once the workgroup report has been delivered to them in April 2018. Rather than develop recommendations that will be vetted by the community, the group discussed involving stakeholders in conversations to develop the recommendations.  The regional meeting feedback pointed to concerns about developing recommendations the community and stakeholder groups could support.  This shift would hopefully help alleviate the concern.  The Committee will further discuss this at their November meeting.
  • The group reviewed the results of information gathered for system director job duties. They were appreciative of the information.  The project managers will work with the Steering Committee leadership to do further analysis of the results.
  •  Virtual Q & As will start again in December and will be Steering Committee led conversations related to structure, governance and implementation. The November 7th Q&A has been canceled, but community members are encouraged to watch the recorded workgroup sessions from WLA.
  • The Funding and Cost Standards Subcommittee met with SOMBAW at their September 29 meeting in Madison to work on standardizing library system income sources and how these funds are spent. It was noted that all 16 systems do things very differently making data comparison difficult. The discussions started through the PLSR process may result in standardizing reporting.


  • Workgroups are preparing for WLA sessions. If you cannot attend WLA, please be sure to watch the video recordings that will be posted on the PLSR website as soon as possible after the conference. The workgroups welcome (and need) your feedback and questions.

Update on PLSR Steering Committee Regional Meetings

The Steering Committee extends its sincere thanks to all of the community members that attended one of the September regional meetings.

One important piece of feedback that the Committee received was the desire for more details related to administration, governance, and funding, along with the workgroup models.   The workgroups will begin to share more details at WLA and expect to have their work completed at the end of March 2018.   The Steering Committee is gathering information to help with decisions related to structure, governance, and funding.  At their October meeting, the Committee approved facilitator-led library focus groups, with the goal of hearing from libraries about their thoughts related to structure.  These would be happening in late Fall and early Winter.  The Committee will gather other information in the coming months to help with their recommendations, including work of the HR and Funding Subcommittee and the Chapter 43 workgroup.  They expect to start the process to make recommendations for these areas once the workgroup reports are delivered to them on April 2, 2018.

The Committee also received feedback that, regardless of workgroup models, the library community must be involved in this process of creating recommendations for structure, governance, and funding.  At the November Steering Committee meeting, they will discuss what this process might look like.

One of the other concerns expressed by Steering was the low attendance at some meetings.  With the November meetings coming so quickly after the September meetings, there was concern that the November meetings would be poorly attended.

With these factors in mind, the Steering Committee will be rescheduling the originally planned November/December regional meetings for March 2018. This will allow for the following:

  • Having more information to base a discussion about overall structure. There will be more information from the workgroups, including Chapter 43, the Funding and HR subcommittees, and the library focus groups, along with any other activities that take place between now and March.
  • Having more information about the post-April 2 process. The Steering Committee will have a clearer picture of their post-April 2 process by March and may have specific insights and questions to share and ask.
  • Having more opportunity to discuss how to increase attendance. Options might include additional coordination with systems and/or system meetings, and holding meetings in the afternoon and evenings to accommodate small library schedules, etc.

Steering members are also willing to attend System member meetings upon request between November and March to gather input about the post-workgroup report process, determine what a stakeholder inclusive process might look like, and to offer updates on the process.

Stay tuned, we’ll share a schedule for the March meetings as soon as it is available.

Interested in speaking with or having a Steering Committee visit you? Send an email at and we’ll find the time!



PLSR Update Message for 10/13/2017 — Workgroups and Steering at WLA

Coming to the Kalahari for the WLA Conference? Join all seven workgroups as they share the progress they have made in developing their recommendations and ask for feedback from the library community. Questions and comments are welcome.

And, come to the Exhibits Hall where members of the Steering Committee will be available to answer questions, chat about the project, and listen to your feedback. There will be members at the booth Wednesday and Thursday during no-conflict times and lunch hours.

Here’s the session schedule, along with booth times for easy access.

Don’t worry if you can’t make any or all of the sessions. They will be video recorded and shared on the PLSR website afterward and your feedback is welcome at any time.


Interested in speaking with or having a Steering Committee visit you? Send an email at and we’ll find the time!