August 2018
Volume 16.2
back of shoulders and head of man with sunshine streaming in
Photo by Bethany Legg on Unsplash
In this issue of Connect we visit one of BC ELN's six associate member libraries at Acsenda School of Management, share our Office experience using Ecocycle Planning, and provide updates on all BC ELN services and eHLbc. Enjoy!
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In This Issue
A Visit to Acsenda School of Management
By L. Hopton

Two students politely interrupt our conversation to ask for assistance with an IT issue. Another waves and says hi as she passes by the desk. A nearby classroom door is open and the murmurs of discussion can be heard. I am visiting Ali de Haan, Manager of Library and Instructional Services at Acsenda School of Management. Ali's desk, and the modest collection of texts that make up the physical library, is a prominent stop along the ring-shaped corridor that runs around Acsenda. With no walls or doors to separate her workspace from the hallway, students, faculty, and visitors are free to walk up to ask questions at any time. Interruptions are the norm here - and they are something that Ali encourages; A bright yellow sign behind her reads:
Please Interrupt Me.
Photograph of Ali de Haan
Ali de Haan, Manager of Library and Instructional Services at Acsenda
Acsenda, one of BC ELN's six Associate Members, is a private institution that specializes in business management and leadership. The predominantly international student body is small - approximately 240 FTEs. As the only librarian, Ali jokingly describes her typical day as "kind of insane." Not only does she coordinate the library, she also manages IT, teaches information literacy classes, provides instructional support, and runs the bookstore. While her days are hectic, Ali clearly prioritizes making herself available to students. Gesturing to her Please Interrupt Me sign, she says, "That's how I introduce myself. I tell students 'I may not always have the answer, but I can point you in the right direction. You're not alone!'"
When asked what being an associate member of BC ELN has done for Acsenda, Ali is frank: "without BC ELN we wouldn't be able to give students the education that we can with affiliation. We'd probably only have two databases. I doubt we would have EBSCO Discovery Service, nor some of the other important industry databases that we currently have access to." Ali notes that the Common Suite, a core suite of databases to which all BC ELN partner libraries subscribe, is important for providing continuity of access to students that either transfer to Acsenda or plan to transfer from Acsenda to other post-secondary institutions. And for Ali herself, affiliation provides an additional way to build relationships with her peers in public institutions. Events like the BC ELN All Partner Meeting provide colleagues across the post-secondary sector a chance to connect and learn from one another.
  Lobby of Ascenda School of Management
Though small, Acsenda's enrollment is nevertheless growing by leaps and bounds. An additional 200 students will be joining the school in the fall; to prepare for this growth, the school is moving to a larger office space on Burrard Street in September. The new space will mean a new library, and Ali envisions it as a safe place for students to collaborate and connect with the information they need. A new resource will also be available to Acsenda students; Ali is delighted that BC ELN has recently introduced a consortial license for Statista - an online statistics, market research, and business intelligence portal - another resource Acsenda likely could not afford on its own. "It will serve so many of our students and classes," she says.
Talking about the future for the Acsenda Library, Ali is brimming with ideas, among them strengthening library liaison, and looking for more ways to connect students with the greater Vancouver community. As a member of BC ELN, there are yet further opportunities for Acsenda to grow down the line by joining services such as AskAway and WriteAway. However Acsenda develops in the coming years, its membership with BC ELN ensures that it will do so in good company.
Ecocycle Planning at BC ELN: Seeing the Forest for the Trees

"Is that project in a maturity phase or moving into creative destruction?" asked a BC ELN staffer, pointing to a small post-it note affixed to a four-by-fifteen poster of an infinity symbol. We clustered closer, taking turns sharing our thoughts. Eventually someone moved the post-it note to the lower right quadrant of the poster. Heads nodded.
Large poster of the ecocycle chart
This was a new way of visualizing our projects, but it resonated. In June BC ELN staff met as a ten-person team to engage in Ecocycle Planning, a liberating structure. By using the metaphor of the plant lifecycle to understand projects, Ecocycle Planning is designed to "analyze the full portfolio of activities and relationships to identify obstacles and opportunities for progress."   
While at BC ELN we partake in collegial sharing and problem-solving on a daily basis, Ecocycle Planning gave us a unique opportunity to see individual projects within the context of the whole consortium's work, brainstorm solutions to "stuck" projects, and conjure up ideas for future directions.
We started with each of us listing our projects - both current and future - on separate post-it notes and placed them on our own ecocycle charts. Then we moved to discussing these in pairs. This gave us a chance to articulate and clarify where we are with distinct projects and ask questions of our colleagues to better understand their work.
  BC ELN staff discuss work activities in pairs
The next step involved moving all our post-it notes onto the giant ecocycle chart. The result was a vision of organized chaos: colourful collections of notes scattered along the continuum of four project phases - gathering seeds, birth, maturity, and creative destruction. This was the literal 'big picture' of our BC ELN work.
BC ELN Staff move sticky notes onto a large Ecocycle chart For a while we discussed projects on the continuum, organizing, moving some post-it notes from area to area to better reflect their status, and paying particular attention to where efforts of creative destruction could be made that might free up resources for other initiatives. Then we spent time sorting the "seeds" that we had identified in our ecocycle - ideas for future BC ELN activities. These were set aside to bring to the Steering Committee for discussion at an upcoming planning meeting.
BC ELN staff stand back to look at post it notes on a large ecocycle chart By stepping out of our silos we saw opportunities to reduce efforts by working together on certain projects - for example around honing our communication plans across all service areas. Though the Ecocycle Planning activity doesn't take into account operational tasks (such as license renewals or client support) that take up the bulk of our time, we were nevertheless able to prioritize projects and create rough timelines to show where human resources will be dedicated over the next year or so .
Ecocycle Planning empowers staff members to step back and look at projects in a way that is both critical and creative. The activity helped us develop a better understanding of our colleagues' workloads and Office resources. Though the poster is just a little too big to fit on our BC ELN walls, we expect to bring it out at future staff meetings to review our progress.
Service Area Updates
Coordinators bring you the latest news about BC ELN service areas and the eHLbc consortium.

  • Arca welcomes Alberta and Manitoba colleagues: Brandon University, Athabasca University, and Red Deer College have now joined - watch for their digital assets to be shared soon...
  • Better, faster, more secure! Arca has migrated to a new server on SFU Cloud Computing's new production environment
  • Reviewing service provider scripts to keep them fresh and easy to use! Stay tuned...
  • 20% increase in May/June AskAway chat visitors over the previous year
  • "This is so great! I thought I had to come to the library during certain hours to ask questions. This makes our student life easier," says BCIT undergraduate student
  • The new eHLbc website is up and running (and secure through https); we anticipate workflow efficiencies and new opportunities around member support and communications... Check it out at 
  • A close review of the BCELN Model License is slated to begin soon; keep an eye out for more info and an opportunity to provide input in September
  • You asked, and we're working on it... Negotiations for EBSCO's LGBT Life with Full Text are in the final phase; updated pricing will be provided to members this Fall 

  • Good News: Enhanced Desktop Delivery is now available for Non-returnable (copy) requests. Libraries can deliver documents, such as journal articles, directly to patrons within OutLook OnLine!
  • New SHAREit Version 6 software will be available as soon as Fall 2018! The Admin Centre will be checking in with libraries to plan the best way forward implementing the new version


  • Throughout the summer WriteAway is progressing with a software review to identify operational and cost effective options for online tutoring