Job Posting: Branch Chief at the NIH Library, Bethesda, MD

During the first week of May, we expect that there will be an announcement on for the position of branch chief, a GS-14 position, at the NIH Library. This position will be posted for five calendar days. The short posting time reflects the government’s effort to hire talented people quickly. As part of the application process, it may be necessary to upload copies of degree transcripts. Major responsibilities of the position follow.

BRANCH CHIEF (Supervisory Librarian, GS-1410-14)

The National Institutes of Health is one of the largest biomedical and behavioral research centers in the world, with a staff of more than 20,000, over 9,000 of whom are medical and scientific specialists and/or physicians.  The NIH Library is the focal point for the exchange of biomedical and scientific Information vital to the support of the research activities conducted at the National Institutes of Health.  The NIH Library also provides information services and resources to several other agencies within the Department of Health & Human Services. The Library’s interdisciplinary collection is extensive in scope and intensive in depth of coverage.  The collection consists of over 10,000 online journals, 85,000 monographs and numerous general scientific databases including Web of Knowledge and Scopus, plus specialty databases and tools for chemists, neuroscientists and molecular biologists.
The Education Services Branch (ESB) is responsible (1) initiating outreach activities such as the informationist program and other consulting activities; (2) providing a dynamic instructional program that includes information management education and end user search training; (3) developing the information commons; and (4) property management. The branch leads the provision of comprehensive information and educational services to NIH medical, scientific and administrative personnel as well as several HHS agencies such as the Indian Health Service, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and a number of StaffDivs in the Office of the Secretary. Comprehensive information services include: facilitating access to all relevant information resources whether in the NIH Library, another library, or on the Internet; and providing a dynamic instructional program that includes Information management education and end user search training.

The incumbent in this position, under the direction of the Director, is responsible for all aspects of the Education Services Branch functions. S/he also serves as a member of the Library’s leadership team. As Branch Chief, is responsible for identifying Branch priorities; developing long term, mid-term, and short term goals and objectives; and hiring, training, supervising, and evaluating a staff of librarians, library technicians and IT specialists.

Develops and implements Branch policies and procedures. Makes recommendations about Library-wide policies, programs and services based on extensive experience and knowledge of the biomedical, research community and its information needs. Participates in Library-wide strategic and long range planning, program development, budget planning and decision making.

Provides technical guidance, leadership and administrative supervision and direction to staff. Plans, assigns, and directs the work to be accomplished, ensuring timely performance of satisfactory amount and quality of work; reviews work products and accepts, amends, or rejects work; develops performance standards and serves as rating official on employee evaluations; interviews and selects or approves selection for all positions; identifies and provides necessary training and makes decisions on non-routine, costly, or controversial training; hears and resolves group and individual grievances and serious complaints; effects minor disciplinary actions; approves within-grade increases, leave, and overtime; recommends promotions, awards, and reassignments; promotes team building, and identifies and implements ways to streamline operations and increase workload productivity.

As Branch Chief, supervises Branch staff and leads them in identifying priorities; establishing annual goals and objectives; and developing strategies for achieving them. Disseminates information concerning changes in policy, methods and techniques by memoranda, instructions or training to Branch staff. Makes necessary changes in organization of work and assignment of functions. Evaluates and reviews ratings of subordinates’ performance, approves leave; initiates personnel actions for recruitment, appointments, promotions, reassignments or disciplinary actions.

Prepares and submits the Branch’s annual request for equipment, staff, supplies, training or staff development. Prepares statistical reports describing activities of the Branch, including an assessment of progress on goals and objectives for the year.

Promotes good public relations with NIH Library users, interpreting their information needs through various needs assessments, surveys, program evaluations, comments, suggestions, complaints, or recommendations. Communicates program changes and issues to internal and external clients.

S/he has primary responsibility for developing and monitoring the informationist program which consists of librarians and technical information specialists. Oversees informationist program which provides information services embedded as part of customers’ clinical, research and health policy workflows. Plans, directs, coordinates and supervises the work of the informationist staff who work with selected NIH Institutes and Centers (ICs) or their branches, labs or offices.  Serves as coach and mentor and assures they have the proper training and support to work effectively as a clinical or biological science research team member. Assures the informationist and education services provided meet the needs of NIH and HHS users by conducting periodic user needs assessments and program evaluations.

Performs other duties as assigned.

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