عنوان مقاله [English]
Objective: Specialized technical skills alone in the field of library and information management are not sufficient, and information specialists who demonstrate a combination of hard and soft skills are preferred by employers in the present era, as they possess a clear competitive advantage. Therefore, the aim of this research is to determine the current status of core skills among university librarians in Kermanshah province from the perspective of librarians working in these universities.
Methods: The present research is applied in nature and conducted using a survey method. The statistical population of this study consists of all university librarians in Kermanshah province (58 individuals). The research was carried out through a census, and 51 completed questionnaires were returned. The Sanders questionnaire (2019) was used to collect research data. To test the reliability of the questionnaire, Cronbach's alpha coefficient was used, and the obtained alpha value was 0.81, indicating the desirable reliability coefficient for the questionnaire items. The collected data were analyzed using Friedman test and frequency distribution.
Results: According to the Friedman test, the selected skills have a significant difference in mean, with the highest priority being HR/personnel management. Frequency distribution was used to answer other questions. The findings showed that 23 skills are needed by all graduates according to librarians, 21 skills are often needed by librarians, 3 skills are needed by some librarians, and 9 skills are needed by managers based on their frequency.
Conclusions: The study showed that according to librarians in Kermanshah province's university libraries, the highest priority is human resource/personnel management, which is one of the managerial components. This means that librarians value the soft skills of their managers and consider it essential for managers to manage librarians in the best possible way and hire capable personnel. Interpersonal communication skills, customer service skills, search skills (ability to search databases, internet resources, and catalogs efficiently and effectively), evaluating and selecting information resources, teamwork, reader’s advisory, interacting with diverse communities and knowledge of professional ethics are among the other important skills considered in terms of librarians' needs. This means that all graduates must be familiar with these skills regardless of their future career path. Since according to librarians, soft skills are necessary for all graduates of the library and information science field, it seems that updating the curriculum of this field should focus on offering courses that teach these skills, and efforts should be made to teach soft skills to students through education. Also, two communication skills, interpersonal communication and customer service, which are the most important skills, are among the communication components. This also indicates the importance of communication skills for graduates. Soft skills are as important as hard skills, and students should try to learn soft skills regardless of their future career path to achieve success for themselves and their organization. Moreover, librarians should also try to improve their soft skills to be more successful in their careers.