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The user experience movement is gaining momentum in libraries, but its adoption and adaptation into an organizational culture may present unexpected challenges. In June 2014, the Michigan State University (MSU) Libraries created a User Experience unit and in a short time, established a solid and reputable team of practitioners. This success, however, was not achieved overnight. User experience work tends to be team-oriented and project-based, and initially, unit members struggled to adapt their roles within the unit and the unit’s role within the organization. To guide the unit forward, an in-house retreat was held to give unit members an opportunity to better understand each other as user experience professionals. Through a skills audit and a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis, respect for others’ skills was gained and a shared vision was established. The User Experience unit now effectively functions as a productive, collaborative, synergistic change agent, holistically integrating user experience into all services at the MSU Libraries.

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user experience, academic libraries, organizational management


Library and Information Science

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

From Dandelion Seed to Cottage Garden: The Transformation of User Experience in the MSU Libraries