Document Type

Book Contribution

Publication Date



Association of College and Research Libraries


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on higher education, the Clemson University Libraries’ Resource Sharing Team had the opportunity to scale up our practice of creating and sharing process documentation in order to maintain continuity of services regardless of various disruptions. In March 2020, Clemson University Libraries, like many other academic libraries, suspended onsite operations for a brief time period due to the spread of COVID-19 in order to determine how best to provide information services safely to all patrons regardless of location. Because of limited access to library and other campus buildings, library administration authorized only a few employees to work onsite and maintain the multitude of services we provide to thousands of patrons. The existing structure and fluidity of the Resource Sharing team prepared staff to discuss workloads and designate one team member to work at each location.
The last three years have seen the Resource Sharing team expand from four FTE and five student workers covering four service areas to six FTE and five student workers covering six service areas, thus creating a need for thorough documentation of processes and procedures due to the time-sensitive nature of the services provided: Interlibrary Loan Borrowing, Interlibrary Loan Lending, Document Delivery, state-wide consortial sharing, offsite storage management and retrieval, and mail and branch courier services. With staff based at two branches and the department serving multiple campuses across the state of South Carolina, Resource Sharing was challenged in how to remain a cohesive group despite being physically apart from one another. To create an agile team in response to our expansion, tasks shifted from being proprietary and performed by a single person to being thoroughly documented with cross-training provided. This change meant that individual team members adjusted their work philosophies to become product owners of the services they oversee and maintain documentation of workflows so that any other team member can perform their duties if needed. This change in thinking and procedure has allowed the team to work as a more cohesive unit, step up for each other in times of need, and avoid disruptions in service to our patrons.


This chapter is part of Managing Crises in the Academic Library: Past, Present, and Future, edited by Doris Van Kampen-Breit. Available for purchase: