BCLA Perspectives

Survey: Technologies piquing interest and desired in the workplace

Question: What technologies are you interested in knowing more about, developing skills in, or would like to see brought to your workplace? 

Thoughtful responses from 93 respondents offered multiple answers to this question. Their motives were mixed—some respondents expressed personal interests, others had a desire to be more comfortable in daily tasks or to excel in their positions. There were also community- and patron-identified needs mentioned, as well as desires for the library itself to be more up-to-date and user friendly. 

By far, the most common theme included the respondent’s desire to have training and skills development for troubleshooting personal devices. Other broad topics are newer technologies and themes for patron services, and  upgrades for enhancing library functionality. Below, we’ve identified the most frequent themes, including specific examples, found in the responses.   

 Better training for staff 

  • Flowcharts for troubleshooting personal devices 
  • guidance for setting up e-book accounts  
  • skills development for staff on social media, common apps  

Updated library hardware/software 

  • Wireless printing 
  • More current Microsoft Office products (helps staff, helps staff troubleshoot for others) 
  • Faster internet, wifi signal boosters 
  • Better scanners (both quality and functions, like the ability to directly email scans)  

New, better, or different library systems 

  • integrated library and archival softwares 
  • ILS products for special libraries 
  • Mac computers  
  • RFID 

Library management 

  • Project and task management tools 
  • Website management and design 
  • scheduling software 
  • reference tracking software 
  • room booking software 

Using or acquiring technology to reach more/different users 

  • using mobile platforms more effectively for outreach 
  • space and equipment for gaming 
  • Assistive and adaptive technologies 
  • tools help bring library resources to traditionally marginalized groups  
  • proxy servers and improved at-home access 
  • engaging more with library users and community groups to make virtual collections and inform collection development 
  • wifi hot spots 

Maker stations and creative/design technologies 

  • 3D printing 
  • Sound and video recording, editing  
  • Graphic design and editing (illustrator for example)
  • Coding
  • Self publishing
  • Podcasting 

Emerging technologies 

  • Augmented reality 
  • Virtual reality  
  • Robotics 


  • digitization hardware and software 
  • preservation  
  • converting older formats 

 Digital literacy and data management for patrons 

  • cloud based file management 
  • password managers  
  • 2-factor authentication 
  • Data privacy and personal information