The Senior Partnering Consultant is part of the Office for Planning and Institutional Effectiveness (PIE) at Vanderbilt University and works closely with leadership at the Vanderbilt Libraries. Their contribution is to support Vanderbilt Libraries to shape and implement strategy and decisions on the basis of high-quality and relevant data, information, and analysis. This position reports directly to the Assistant Provost and Executive Director for Planning and Institutional Effectiveness and has a dotted line to the University Librarian.
This Senior Partnering Consultant - Libraries (SPC-L) position is a new position being funded by the Vanderbilt Libraries. The SPC will be part of the Libraries' leadership team and work at a strategic and operational level in the Libraries to ensure that data are integrated into the Libraries' strategy and decision-making. Building on the insights of data and analysis, the SPC works with library leadership, the Assessment Librarian and university communications to increase the impact of the Libraries on the life of the institution. They will also be a full member of the Partnering team in PIE and will be able to draw on the relationships and resources within PIE to support their activities, and provide feedback to PIE about the Libraries' priorities, needs, and preferences to enable PIE to be more effective.
Senior Partnering Consultants must be able to integrate disparate sources of information to provide strategic insights and pragmatic recommendations for action. Because of the nature of this role, experience and training in an academic library is required for this Senior Partnering role.
Vanderbilt University is entering a time of ambitious growth. With a new Chancellor and a new undergraduate student-focused residential college system, the campus is poised for significant transformation.
The University recently completed an external review of the Libraries which resulted in a series of recommendations, including a more comprehensive approach to assessment and continuous improvement of Libraries' services to campus stakeholders.
The Office for Planning and Institutional Effectiveness (PIE) partners with leaders in Academic Affairs and beyond to support decision-making, planning, and actions based on high-quality and relevant data, information, and analysis. The Office works collaboratively with many units at Vanderbilt. It comprises four teams: Partnering; Institutional Research and Analysis; Assessment; and Data Governance and Solutions.
The SPC-L will be a member of both these exciting units as and will be able to shape and support this exciting period of strategic development for Vanderbilt and the Libraries.
Duties and Responsibilities
The SPC-L will work at a strategic and operational level in the Libraries to ensure that data are integrated into the Libraries' strategy and decision-making. More informed decisions will enable the Libraries to ensure they are meeting the needs of students and faculty, who are the Libraries' primary stakeholders.
Making data and analytical information accessible, relevant, and usable to leaders and stakeholders in the Libraries
Share and explain data, analysis, assessment findings, and similar information to leadership in the Libraries. This may include customizing reports, and using a variety of tools including Excel, PowerPoint, and data visualization software (e.g., Tableau).
Identify weaknesses in data resources and advise and lead on how to collect and curate information better, working with the Libraries' teams and PIE teams as appropriate.
Be familiar with the key issues facing the Libraries and work with leadership to understand those issues and to determine how data, information, and analysis can best support decision-making.
Integrate quantitative and qualitative information with an understanding of the goals and constraints of the Libraries.
Develop and report on key indicators as required to monitor the Libraries' effectiveness.
Advise on factors influencing achievement of Libraries' goals on the basis of an analysis of available data and suggest ways to enhance performance.
Advise on options, risks, and action plans.
Collecting and enhancing data resources, especially those specific to the management of the Libraries. ( NB: this section refers to data resources used to manage the Libraries and support the Libraries' service delivery, not the academic or bibliographic data resources which are what the Libraries deliver to the University and which are the responsibility of librarians.)
Identify how to improve existing data resources and advise and lead on how to collect and curate data to be more effective, working with the PIE and partner area teams as appropriate.
Work with partners in the Libraries and PIE to develop and implement assessment instruments, which might include surveys, focus groups, interviews, etc., in order to collect data from stakeholders.
Review the data resources supporting the Libraries' management and work with Vanderbilt's Data Governance Committee (chaired by the Assistant Provost in PIE) to ensure good data governance and management.
Work with experts in the Libraries, PIE, and VUIT to ensure that the technical underpinnings and integration of these data resources are fit for purpose and aligned with Vanderbilt's Data Strategy.
Serve as Data Steward for these data resources, ensuring adequate data quality for known uses, documenting the data sources and definitions, overseeing data retention, managing data access, and ensuring data privacy standards are maintained.
Working with leadership to support strategic planning and strategic implementation for the Vanderbilt Libraries. Support leadership to connect library value to university goals and mission through the development and monitoring of key indicators (learning analytics, library's role in research activity, quality, and visibility).
Use data and analysis to inform planning and decision-making in the Libraries. Present/discuss issues, data, and analysis with local leadership. Advise on options, risks, and action plans, helping to shape these discussions.
Consult with units or departments to frame needs, outcomes, and next steps and help to develop well-crafted business cases for stakeholder buy-in.
Communicate data for strategic purposes. Write compelling narratives, creating reports that follow basic graphic design rules and include evidence-based, actionable analysis. Integrate quantitative and qualitative information, informed by a nuanced understanding of the needs, strengths, and constraints of the Libraries and their role in delivering Vanderbilt's strategic priorities.
Assess and evaluate activities in the Libraries, to inform future plans and enhance effectiveness.
Train stakeholders in data usage, data literacy, data tools, and assessment, and serve as a source of data expertise
Present on data resources and reports, increasing familiarity with data resources and helping users to interpret data robustly
Advise and support individuals and groups of users to improve their familiarity with and level of comfort using data for decision-making purposes.
Provide communications and training on data-oriented activities.
Serve as an intermediary between PIE and the Libraries.
Identify projects (e.g., assessment, surveys, analysis, reporting) which may require input from the broader PIE team and broker and facilitate those conversations.
Provide feedback to the PIE team about the effectiveness and impact of various office outputs, and about local priorities from the Libraries.
Remain abreast of developments elsewhere in the PIE team and beyond to identify what may be of use to the Libraries.
Support accreditation, compliance, and benchmarking processes.
Work with local and institutional leadership to support regional accreditation processes (SACSCOC).
Coordinate the collect and compilation of local data, ensuring it is compliant, consistent, and in the correct format.
Work with library leadership to support regional and disciplinary accreditation compliance requirements, particularly around data requirements specific to the library.
Draw on knowledge of national datasets and benchmarking efforts (e.g., LibQUAL+, IPEDS, NCES, Ithaka S+R, etc.), influential library assessment methods (e.g., EBLIP, SAILS, RAILS, Conspectus), and relevant library standards (e.g., ACRL Standards for Libraries in Higher Education) to advise the Libraries about engaging in initiatives and how to use the data that comes out of institutional and national datasets.
Abide by professional codes of ethics for librarians such as the American Library Association Code of Ethics and the IFLA Code of Ethics for Librarians and other Information Workers.
Contribute to or lead projects for the Libraries or PIE. Actual projects will vary, but examples of current activities include:
Review of reporting resources and tools to develop a more self-service approach
Communication of institutional datasets, surveys, or findings
Cover for colleagues in Partnering team and collaborate as required inside and outside PIE
This position does not have supervisory responsibilities; this position reports administratively and functionally to the Assistant Provost and Executive Director for Planning and Institutional Effectiveness. The Senior Partnering Consultant will also have a strong dotted-line reporting relationship with the designated leaders in the Vanderbilt Libraries.
The Senior Partnering Consultant is a generalist role, and a variety of skills and experiences may provide appropriate experience and preparation for this role.
Master's degree in Library or Information Science from a program accredited by the American Library Association (ALA) is necessary.
Practical knowledge of social science research methods is necessary.
At least five years' experience working in a professional setting is necessary, including experience working with those in leadership roles.
Experience of working in an academic library setting is necessary.
Experience working in higher education is necessary, with a demonstrated understanding of how a higher educational institution works. This includes an understanding of the strategic challenges, knowledge of the formal structures, and an appreciation of the internal and external political context and how that influences appropriate behavior.
Experience of working with quantitative information and data is necessary; this may be demonstrated by academic or professional experience.
Ability to manipulate and present data in Excel is necessary.
Ability to work with Tableau or a similar data visualization tool is strongly preferred.
Ability to do descriptive statistical analysis (e.g., compute means, variances, change over time) is necessary.
Training in and experience of more advanced statistical techniques is preferred.
Experience with multiple data collection techniques (e.g., surveys, focus groups, structured interviews) is preferred.
Experience of qualitative analysis is preferred.
Experience of bibliometric analysis is preferred.
Ability to understand and translate quantitative data for a wide variety of audiences is necessary.
Excellent interpersonal skills are necessary. The Senior Partnering Consultant needs to be able develop a rapport with a wide range of individuals. They must be able to effectively challenge pre-conceived notions and deliver messages which may be unwelcome.
Experience working with those in senior leadership roles is necessary. The SPC-L must have the gravitas to engage with senior leadership and an understanding of how they best receive and consume data and analysis.
Experience working with faculty and/or students is strongly preferred.
Excellent communication skills are necessary. This includes both written and verbal skills.
Ability to present and do training to targeted audiences is necessary.
Excellent problem-solving skills are necessary. The Senior Partnering Consultant needs to be able to define a problem, place it into a broader strategic context, and work collaboratively to explore the issue and develop solutions. This requires the intellectual agility to move from theoretical to practical and back again, drawing together a variety of different inputs to come to a conclusion.
Demonstrated experience managing projects through to completion is necessary.
Strong time-management skills are necessary, as this post will be working in a matrix environment so will need to prioritize their own workload much of the time.
Commitment to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
At Vanderbilt University, we are intentional about and assume accountability for fostering advancement and respect for equity, diversity, and inclusion for all students, faculty, and staff. Our commitment to diversity makes us who we are. We have created a community that celebrates differences and lets individuality thrive. As part of this commitment, we actively value diversity in our workplace and learning environments as we seek to take advantage of the rich backgrounds and abilities of everyone. The diverse voices of Vanderbilt represent an invaluable resource for the University in its efforts to fulfill its mission and strive to be an example of excellence in higher education.
Vanderbilt University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. Women, minorities, people with disabilities and protected veterans are encouraged to apply.
Please note, all candidates selected for an offer of employment are subject to pre-employment background checks, which may include but are not limited to, based on the role for which they have been selected: criminal history, education verification, social media review, motor vehicle records, credit history, and professional license verification.
Internal Number: 10000353
About Vanderbilt University
Vanderbilt University is a center for scholarly research, informed and creative teaching, and service to the community and society at large. Vanderbilt will uphold the highest standards and be a leader in the quest for new knowledge through scholarship, the dissemination of knowledge through teaching and outreach, and the creative experimentation of ideas and concepts. In pursuit of these goals, Vanderbilt values most highly intellectual freedom that supports open inquiry, equality, compassion, and excellence in all endeavors.