Reviewing your Recommendations and creating an Action Plan
The next step is to review your Recommendations, select 10-15 recommendations (Action Items) for your library to focus on, and create an Action Plan.
To view your Recommendations, click Recommendations in the left sidebar menu. For most libraries, the list of recommendations is quite long! It’s easy to feel overwhelmed, but remember, priorities are different for every library. No library will achieve 100% on the Assessment or implement all of the Recommendations.
Your library's list of Recommendations is based on your responses to the Assessment; any item not marked “yes” in the Assessment appears as a Recommendation. Each Recommendation includes Resources selected to provide more information about the topic including examples of libraries that have already taken this action, and tools or other resources to help with implementation. Click on the link that shows the number of resources to expand the list:
Using your reports to prioritize your Recommendations
Our Getting Ready for Action video will guide you through ways to use the reports to prioritize your Recommendations to create a realistic Action Plan. For a real-life example of how one library created their Action Plan, you can read about how the Mifflin County Library prioritized their recommendations to create their Action Plan.
Here are some quick tips to help prioritize your Recommendations and identify Action Items:
Schedule a review of the results and recommendations with your staff. This can help to determine areas that are of particular interest and that would resonate with the local community.
Use the filters at the top of the recommendations form to limit your recommendations to one of the Attribute Levels, Benchmarks, and/or Strategic Area. Level 1 recommendations are applicable to most libraries and are usually the easiest to achieve, making them a good place to start. You may also want to focus on one of the Strategic Areas where your library struggled on the assessment or one of the Benchmark areas that is especially important to your community.
Look at the list of resources associated with each recommendation to help you better understand what might be involved in implementing that recommendation.
- Download the peer comparison report available under Results and Reports. It can be helpful to see what other libraries of your size are doing.
Remember that not all recommendations are going to be appropriate for all libraries. For example, if you have a very high percentage of older adults in your community, it may be more important to focus on health information than on job-seeking information.
Be sure to add a few of the more difficult (Level 2 or Level 3) recommendations or recommendations that might take more planning or time to implement to your action plan. These are often the action items that allow you to engage with your community on a deeper level and build new supportive relationships with your stakeholders.
- Don't add more than 10-15 items to your Action Plan. You can always add more items later, but it can be discouraging to start with a very long list.
To add a Recommendation to add to the Action Plan, click Add to Action Plan.
Your Action Plan should only include Recommendations that make sense for your community! While the Edge Assessment reports are useful in helping you select Action Items, the reports alone don't detail your community's particular needs. Looking Outside the Reports addresses other questions you may want to ask before adding an Action Item.
To view your Action Plan, click Action Plan in the left sidebar menu. You will see the Recommendations you selected displayed as Action Items. To review the details about an Action Item or to remove it from your Action Plan, click on it in the list.
Clicking on the Action Item will take you to a details page that again provides access to all of the resources associated with the Action Item. There is also a section to update your progress towards implementation of the Action Item and record notes for your reference.
As work proceeds, updating the status of your Action Items creates a quick summary of your library's accomplishments. Always a useful thing to have!