While advances in search technology are making it easier for end users to find information on their own, these users still need guidance in finding the information they need. InfoStar Kelley Martin, a law librarian with Sterne Kessler Goldstein & Fox, a leading intellectual property law firm based in Washington D.C., is embracing this new paradigm in information searching.
Kelley encourages every user at the firm to access the library services directly from their desktop. Making this happen was a large undertaking for the library, as it required training all users. Now when the firm hires new employees, they are trained and given desktop access to online services.
“Providing our users with desktop access has made them more efficient,” said Kelley. “Our users are working on cutting edge technology. Having them draft their own search strings and perform searches themselves allows for more precise data retrieval.”
Kelley was recently honored for her leadership in single-handedly managing the information needs of her organization and empowering her broad audience to use strategic electronic resources on desktops through the firm.
One of the latest developments being offered by the Sterne Kessler’s law library is document delivery of soft copy documents via e-mail or hard copies via interoffice mail. This shortens the wait time for end users in receiving vital information. They also keep track of the informational needs of their users by actively participating in the professional development activities provided by the firm.
Going forward, Kelley believes that people will begin to see the Internet as a stepping stone to information and not a one stop shop.
“I believe people will understand that the Internet, while containing a great wealth of information, does not contain all information,” said Kelley. “To completely research and understand a topic, one must look beyond the Internet as the only source of information.”
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