Jisc have published a helpful guide, Check your tech as part of your coronavirus planning, on making contingency plans in case of self-isolation or workplace closure as a result of COVID-19. While written for HE/FE audiences, it may have wider application. We’re using some of their headings to highlight resources that may be useful for information professionals who find themselves temporarily displaced from their workplace.
Obviously, if you are unwell, your energy should be directed to following medical advice and convalescing. Work can wait!
Collaborate with the right platforms
If you are going to be working from home for whatever reason, do make sure that you have access to the Usernames and Passwords for all the systems you will need remote access to. Too many of us rely on the saved password feature on our work computers! We suggest that you use use a password manager to record these rather than Post-It notes!
Many of us already support library users at a distance using chat or video. You may find some useful suggestions amongst the recording, slides and tweets from MmIT’s 2018 webinar on using video in your library and information service (#MmITvideo).
We’ve discovered some helpful guidance on good practices for COVID-19-necessitated online meetings.
Access digital content wherever you are
This should be a quick win for info pros, but have you taken advantage of all the software that you are entitled to download on your own tech? Within HE, you may have subscriptions that permit you to download Office 365 and EndNote, for example, while you are employed or studying. It may also be worth ensuring that you’ve downloaded the latest version of Adobe Reader and updated the apps that give you access to e-content.
Check out what your employer permits you to save or access away from the workplace (there may be restrictions due to GDPR or sensitive data). If you can access files remotely through a VPN, test it out in advance.
Are you registered with your local public library for e-books and e-audiobooks? Most services offer Borrowbox or Overdrive but you’ll normally need to obtain a pin number as well as your library registration number.
Support your most vulnerable
Does your workplace or union provide access to online support services or tools like the Big White Wall ?
Can you access Reading Well recommended titles through your workplace or public library service? You may find that some of the titles are available as e-books.
Virtual spaces for wellbeing
We have a number of posts which touch on aspects of Digital wellbeing on our blog. Whether you want to feel better without logging off, find 20 quick ways to beat digital distraction or balance work and life, you’ll find resources of interest.
Many people find podcasts a great way to relax and/or distract themselves. Everyone has their own favourites but we’d recommend the back catalogue of Jo Woods’ Librarians with Lives podcast. Plus you can read all about Jo’s experience of Creating, producing and marketing a podcast for information professionals.