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Title: Applying agile principles for ICT operations management in libraries
Authors: Klapwijk, Wouter
Keywords: Subject::ICT for development
Subject::Information technology
Issue Date: 20-Jun-2022
Publisher: International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA)
Series/Report no.: 87th IFLA World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) / 2022 in Dublin, Ireland;
Abstract: During the COVID-19 pandemic, many Information Technology (IT) practices in libraries have changed, some out of pure necessity given the new demands placed on IT resources to deal with the new reality. Most IT practices that needed change benefited from a foundation that was laid well before the pandemic to allow for such change to happen in a brief period. One such change necessary was to have IT operations teams in libraries to work in a physically separate, but organizationally coherent, fashion. To adapt to the change required the implementation of methods and tools that allowed for new forms of autonomy, responsibility, and collaboration amongst IT operations teams. By applying agile principles and methods that were implemented at Stellenbosch University (SU) before the pandemic, the SU Library and Information Service’s Information Technology Services (ITS) operations team could respond to the change in a flexible and responsive way. Working and improving on what was already done, and known, about agile IT practices, the ITS team could adopt agile methods such as Kanban using the Jira project management software within a multi-disciplinary team that is responsible for IT operations management across an eco-system of technologies and service offerings. This allowed the team to take on an agile mindset to work, act and support the SU’s Library and Information Service in being responsive to service delivery and project implementation. This paper outlines specific agile methods and practices adopted by the ITS team, as well as the new agile project management methodology implemented to successfully implement vendor-driven software projects while still working to clear strategy-driven management priorities and reporting structures. More importantly, the paper shows that it is not needed to implement agile practices from scratch, because so many agile principles are already applied without practitioners actively realizing it.
Appears in Collections:World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) Materials

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