- Computers are first come/first served, with no timing or time limits. If people are waiting, computer users are asked to be considerate of others and move along.
- Computers are to be used only for job searching or skill development. The receptionists do casually monitor use and give reminders about guidelines.
- For a fee, clients can send or receive faxes ($1/page), print (first 10 pages free, .15 after that), and purchase resume paper and envelopes, larger manila envelopes and floppy discs.
- All computers have Winway resume software loaded on them. Winway is much easier to use than Word.
- There is typing tutorial software to check out.
The philosophy at the Job Center is that people need to learn to do for themselves. They believe that learning how to do things on your own is part of the employment process. They do not fill out forms, do resumes or do anything else that a patron can do themselves. They do offer limited one-on-one coaching with clients to review and critique resumes and letters. These are not "how do I make a resume," sessions, but review of complete documents that are in pretty good shape to begin with.
We can also help by offering training in basic computer skills. We're working on getting this going. Staff tried to offer training sessions a few years ago, and they never jelled. My hunch is that this is the perfect time to try them again.
I have an idea for offering less structured, open practice sessions for jobseekers, in addition to specific training sessions. Rather than promoting it, we could start out by having the Job Center refer clients and see how it goes.
Soon, we will be making Mavis Beacon typing software available for in-house check-out at the Reference Desk. We will be looking for other training software as well. (Share ones that you know about and have used!)
Staff members from Reference are encouraged to attend training sessions and workshops at the Job Center as observers.
If your library is adjusting or adding service in response to the economy, please link to your posts or leave comments here.