Head of Libraries

  • Job Reference: 0803
  • Date Posted: 27 March 2024
  • Recruiter: Live Borders
  • Location: Selkirk, Scottish Borders
  • Remote Working: Some remote working possible
  • Salary: £42,934 to £46,500
  • Bonus/Benefits: Free Gym, Enhanced Maternity and Paternity pay, Company sick pay
  • Sector: Not for Profit/Charities, Public Libraries
  • Job Type: Permanent, Full-time

Job Description

Are you an inspirational library leader?

We’re looking for an experienced, enthusiastic, and committed leader to manage and develop library services in the Scottish Borders You will be customer focussed and able to contribute to the development of the library offer across the region. Experience in leading frontline library teams and being focused on excellent customer services and meeting community need is essential. As is dealing with a variety of stakeholders whether they are a customer, a CEO or a councillor.

Live Borders is the charitable trust delivering cultural, learning and library services on behalf of Scottish Borders Council. At the heart of Live Borders is a commitment to making our communities healthier, happier and stronger, and this is a role where you will be able to make a real difference to our customers and communities.


Job Purpose:  

This post is the lead specialist for the libraries service, responsible for the successful management, development and delivery of library services by working effectively with wider development and delivery colleagues and working with partners both locally and nationally. The post will effectively lead, influence and develop library service plans, undertake business planning and staff and resource management in line with the Live Borders strategy.  

Key Accountabilities:  

  1. To lead and manage the libraries service, delivering a wide range of services which address reading, literacy, learning, social wellbeing, economic wellbeing and digital inclusion across the Scottish Borders whilst identifying the demand for what Live Borders Libraries will offer in the future. 

  2. Overall responsibility for the future development of the Library Service including 6 libraries, outreach provision via x3 Mobile Library vehicles and library services across 5 Library Contact Centres, ensuring effective delivery of library support functions, encompassing outreach and engagement and digital resources provision.   

  3. Providing leadership, management and professional advice on all relevant issues in relation to areas of responsibility to staff, senior officers, Live Borders executive team and others as appropriate 

  4. Undertake business planning, staff and resource management up to £1.1m per annum.   

  5. Managing direct reports ensuring that all aspects of recruitment, line management, work plans, monitoring of performance, appraisal, discipline, sickness/absence management and personal development of staff are managed in line with Live Borders policies and procedures. 

  6. Ensuring that all statutory and mandatory obligations are met in relation to the safe operation of and use of facilities, equipment and vehicles used by staff, residents and visitors. 

  7. To support the development of a Future Library Service project, aligned to the Live Borders strategy and national strategies and themes and future service delivery is shaped by identifying current opportunities, changes and gaps 

  8. Participate in the budget setting process, manage and monitor allocated revenue budget working within Live Borders financial regulations and procedures and assist the Connected & Creative Communities Manager in the preparation of national and other funding applications, developing and managing service initiatives and funded projects with other senior managers.   

  9. Develop and implement any library capital projects as appropriate in conjunction with the Property and Assets Officer. 

  10. Support the review of existing Service Level Agreements (e.g. library services in the integrated library contact centres and school libraries), Fleet Management plans on an ongoing basis, liaising with Scottish Borders Council staff at regular intervals, actively promoting and representing the interests of Live Borders in relation to Library Service activities.   

  11. Maintain current awareness of developments in other sectors and service at a national level, e.g. SLIC (Scottish Libraries Information Council), CILIPS (Chartered Institute of Public Libraries Service) and practices in other Trusts and within the industry, which have a bearing on the provision of library and information services to the community e.g. reducing inequalities, support for job seekers, services for older people, lifelong learning and adopt best working practices wherever relevant, recommending and presenting business cases as required, and ensuring that services evolve and develop to meet the needs and demands of clients, in line with Live Borders aims and objectives 

  12. To make recommendations, drawing on best practice and quality improvement models research and case studies from national bodies, local authorities and other Trusts nationally and internationally.   

  13. Lead and prepare applications for specific projects which are externally funded, developing and exploring avenues of potential sponsorship and other forms of commercial activity to acquire and establish new sources of income, with guidance from the Senior Creative Development and Funding Officer.   

  14. Participate in the budget setting process, manage and monitor allocated budget working within Live Borders financial regulations and procedures 

  15. Represent Live Borders internally and externally e.g. at networking events, meetings, conferences and exhibitions to enhance and strengthen the Live Borders profile. 

  16. Comply with, and ensure compliance with, all Live Borders policies and procedures. 

  17. Promote equal opportunities in service delivery and management of staff. 

  18. Ensure services meet Health and Safety standards established by Live Borders. 

  19. Manage and co-ordinate the team, including setting standards of performance and work targets, and providing guidance, support and training as required. 

  20. Undertake a full range of line management responsibilities including recruitment, induction, appraisal, training and development, absence management, performance, discipline and grievance. 

  21. As an employee you must take reasonable care for the health and safety of yourself, other employees and anyone else who may be affected by your work activities carried out. Employees shall work in accordance with policies, procedures, information, instructions and / or training received 

  22. As a manager you must ensure that employees must take reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves, other employees and anyone else who may be affected by their work activities carried out. 

  23. This job description is indicative of the nature and level of responsibility associated with the job. It is not exhaustive and there may be a requirement to undertake such other duties as may be required to meet the needs of the Service or Live Borders  

Outline of Duties: 

  • Oversee and develop the standard and performance of the library services for Live Borders including the provision of buildings-based, mobile and outreach library services 
  • Manage, support and inspire a high standard of customer service provision and culture of development and improvement across the staff team 
  • Ensure that operational library service delivery priorities are translated into cost effective, risk managed and innovative plans 
  • Manage and report on budget for library services, monitoring performance and leading the team to engage and develop income generating activities to meet targets 
  • Assist in the preparation of annual operating targets setting for library services, manage and monitor and report on these targets against the Live Borders strategy objectives 
  • Lead and encourage teams in the development of innovative and of new services that will grow footfall, income, delivery of outcomes and evidence of impact across library services 
  • Ensure effective processes, systems and standards for the operation of the libraries services making effective use of wider colleagues 
  • Take a leadership approach to capturing and utilising management information, case studies and market/sector trends to base and guide decision making and allocation of resources 
  • Oversee resources and process management of the book stock and the mobile library service 
  • Work with wider colleagues to propose changes and developments including outreach work/pop up services, collaborative work with Live Borders colleagues and external partners/funders to fit with business needs, growth and sustainability plans and in line with customer needs. 
  • Liaise with SBC and Live Borders colleagues to ensure governance in relation to Service Level Agreements for schools and contact centres, management rules, and any public consultation requirements 
  • Assist in the creation, development and implementation of library capital projects 
  • Prepare, submit and implement funding applications/action plans and Service Level Agreements 
  • Engage and liaise with marketing colleagues to develop and manage marketing activities and activities to continually promote the available services and impact of services across the Borders 
  • Support delivery staff to ensure stock and service provision across all service points meets the needs of service users within the local area  
For more information and the view the full applicant's pack, please click on the Apply button. 

Closing date: 30th April 2024