Discovery Systems Librarian

Updated: 3 months ago
Location: Old Montreal, QUEBEC
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 07 Apr 2023

Discovery Systems Librarian
Digital Initiatives

The McGill Library seeks a technically-minded, collaborative, user-centred and highly motivated individual for the position of Discovery Systems Librarian. This member of the McGill Library’s Digital Initiatives department will contribute to the overall management of the Library’s discovery layer(s) and Library Services Platform, support the integration of these systems with others, and serve as lead in designing, implementing, and maintaining additional tools for user discovery and inventory of Library-managed resources.

Located in Montréal, one of the world’s great multicultural and multilingual cities, McGill University is internationally recognized for its excellence as a leading institution of higher education and research. For nearly 200 years, through the work of dedicated people, McGill has been breaking ground in diverse fields and contributing solutions to some of the world’s most significant issues. McGill is also the most internationally diverse research-intensive university in Canada, with over 32% of its students coming to McGill from more than 150 countries. The University systematically appears on the annual list of the best employers in Montreal.

The McGill Library is committed to delivering high-quality, innovative information products, services and programs that focus on client needs and support the University’s strategic mission and directions. The Library proactively supports the teaching, learning and research needs of faculty and students to fulfill McGill’s strategic mission of excellence as a research-intensive, student-centred university.

The McGill Library has the largest collection in Quebec and is one of Canada’s largest academic libraries with over six million monograph titles and 150,000 e-journals and databases. The Library is a member of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL), the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), the Bureau de coopération interuniversitaire (BCI), the Center for Research Libraries (CRL), and the HathiTrust Digital Library.

Information about the University and the McGill Library can be found on the University’s web site. As a tenure stream appointee, the successful candidate is expected to satisfy the requirements in the Regulations Relating to the Employment of Librarian Staff

Primary Purpose of Position
As one of two Discovery Systems Librarians in the McGill Library, serves as a key player in management of the Library’s discovery layer(s) and Library Services Platform, together with relevant staff from other library units and appropriate library committees and working groups. Manages design, testing, deployment, and maintenance of other discovery-related and inventory systems including those built with APIs from vendors. Supports other selected systems managed in Digital Initiatives.

Duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
• Manage selected Library Services Platform (LSP), discovery, and inventory systems.
• Test new functionality and systems upgrades for the LSP, discovery layer, and locally managed discovery and inventory systems; communicate with staff on changes.
• Support integration of the LSP with self-checks, other peripheral equipment, and selected library or university systems.
• Extract, manipulate, and transform data for selected discovery or inventory projects, and automate these processes for data cleanup, system migration, systems integration, or related purposes.
• File problem reports with system vendors or local development staff; follow up with system providers, library staff, and individuals reporting problems on resolutions; track and troubleshoot reported problems internally.
• Work with the Bureau de coopération interuniversitaire (BCI) libraries to implement, manage and support the consortial library Services Platform.
• Oversee outage communication with selected vendors, staff, and users.
• Provide feedback to vendors and open source development communities on development priorities.
• Coordinate staff training and staff and user documentation on LSP, discovery layer, inventory, and locally managed discovery systems.
• Serve as project manager for systems design and implementation of discovery and inventory tools using vendor APIs, and other selected technology projects.
• Provide overall support to staff using the LSP and locally managed discovery and inventory systems.
• Liaise with hospitals and other partner libraries regarding the LSP and discovery layer.
• Serve as ex officio on on select library committees related to LSP and discovery layer configuration, borrowing policies, and other similar functions.
• Provide training to staff, faculty, and students as appropriate. Maintain an active and up-to-date awareness of initiatives and offerings in area of expertise, and apply this knowledge to local work.
• May occasionally be required to work non-standard hours for system implementation and upgrades, and/or resolve system issues.

Reporting relationship
The position reports to the Associate Dean, User Services.


1. ALA-accredited master’s degree in library or information science or equivalent.
2. Demonstrated experience with configuration and staff views of library management system components, such as integrated library systems, library services platforms, or discovery layers.
3. Deep knowledge of metadata standards and protocols used in modern library management systems and on the horizon, including MARC, BIBFRAME, holdings data, KBART, Dublin Core, Linked Data, RDF, and OAI-PMH.
4. Familiarity with HTML, CSS, XML and XSLT.
5. Experience manipulating large data sets.
6. Demonstrated project management skills for technical and service design initiatives, including ability to follow up on unresolved issues.
7. Highly developed oral and written skills and ability to communicate clearly and concisely. Ability to effectively explain technical concepts in non-technical terms.
8. Ability to interact productively and work collaboratively with diverse stakeholders, including academics, technology staff, and public services staff.
9. Creative and analytical thinking skills and good problem solving ability, especially for identifying and resolving systems problems.
10. Excellent interpersonal communication and presentation skills, both written and verbal. Ability to fully and effectively participate in Quebec-wide committee work conducted in French. McGill University is an English-language university where day to day duties may require English communication both verbally and in writing.
11. Ability to meet the requirements of a tenure-track position.

1. Experience with Unix or Linux, and common Unix-based systems tools such as cron .
2. Experience writing new code in at least one programming or scripting language.
3. Familiarity with authentication, federation, and identity management systems such as ADFS, Shibboleth, Active Directory, and/or LDAP.
4. Experience building services using HTTP-based software APIs.

Applications should address the above selection criteria, be accompanied by a letter of interest, curriculum vitae, and the names and addresses of three referees and should be submitted by as one (1) .pdf document.

To apply:

McGill University is committed to equity and diversity within its community and values academic rigour and excellence. We welcome and encourage applications from racialized persons/visible minorities, women, Indigenous persons, persons with disabilities, ethnic minorities, and persons of minority sexual orientations and gender identities, as well as from all qualified candidates with the skills and knowledge to engage productively with diverse communities.
At McGill, research that reflects diverse intellectual traditions, methodologies, and modes of dissemination and translation is valued and encouraged. Candidates are invited to demonstrate their research impact both within and across academic disciplines and in other sectors, such as government, communities, or industry.
McGill further recognizes and fairly considers the impact of leaves (e.g., family care or health-related) that may contribute to career interruptions or slowdowns. Candidates are encouraged to signal any leave that affected productivity, or that may have had an effect on their career path. This information will be considered to ensure the equitable assessment of the candidate’s record.
McGill implements an employment equity program and encourages members of designated equity groups to self-identify. It further seeks to ensure the equitable treatment and full inclusion of persons with disabilities by striving for the implementation of universal design principles transversally, across all facets of the University community, and through accommodation policies and procedures. Persons with disabilities who anticipate needing accommodations for any part of the application process may contact, in confidence, this email.
All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply; however, in accordance with Canadian immigration requirements, Canadian immigration requirements, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

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