Discovery Librarian

Simon Fraser University, W.A.C. Bennett Library, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada
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Created: May 27, 2019


Discovery Librarian

Simon Fraser University Library invites applications for a Discovery Librarian.  This full-time, continuing position is based at the W.A.C. Bennett Library, SFU Burnaby, and supports end users and staff from all three SFU campuses, online and in person.

Reporting to the Head, Digital Library Services, the incumbent will be responsible for seamless discovery and access to Library resources to enable learning, teaching, and research.


We acknowledge the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish), xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), səl̓ílwətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh), q̓íc̓əy̓ (Katzie), and kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem) peoples, on whose traditional territories Simon Fraser University's three campuses stand. By recognizing the Unceded Traditional Coast Salish territories, we aspire to create space for reconciliation through dialogue and decolonizing practices.

Ranked by respected national surveys as one of Canada’s top three comprehensive universities for the past 20 years, Simon Fraser University has also been consistently named one of British Columbia’s Top Employers in recent years, as well as one of Canada’s Top 100 employers, and one of Canada's top family-friendly employers.  

SFU offers more than 100 undergraduate major and joint major programs and more than 45 graduate offerings, spanning many disciplines in eight faculties, and has an international reputation for its innovative interdisciplinary and professional programs. The main W.A.C. Bennett Library is located on the Burnaby campus, while the Belzberg Library is on the Vancouver campus, and Fraser Library is at SFU Surrey. With almost 5 million visits to our public website in the past year, the Library is also host to a large, heavily used digital presence.

The SFU Library is known for the development and implementation of innovative technology, leadership in Open Access, and excellent in-person and online user services. We serve an ethnically diverse student population, most of whom live off-campus and work part-time while attending university.  SFU Library collaborates broadly with other institutions through membership in the Canadian Association of Research Libraries, the Association of Research Libraries, and regional consortia. For more information, see the Library’s website.

The SFU Library commits to a continuous process of transformation to advance equity, diversity, and inclusion and to serve the cause of social justice.  The Library’s Statement on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion provides more information.


As a member of the Digital Services team, the Discovery Librarian plays an important role in advancing Library and University goals, including the Library’s Strategic Plan, and has the curiosity, flexibility, and drive to try new and innovative ways to support Library and University objectives. This support includes creating and sustaining relationships across Library divisions and the wider SFU community.

The Discovery Librarian advocates for users, develops partnerships, implements best practices, and serves as a leader and peer, working closely with colleagues in the Resource Acquisition, Management, and Metadata (RAMM) and the Collections divisions.

Specific areas of responsibility

Discovery layer administration

The Discovery Librarian:

  • is responsible for the overall management, operation, support, and development of the Library’s library services platform (LSP) discovery layer (Primo) and related applications and integrations.

  • ensures integration of the discovery layer and back-office management tools.

  • supports the developer(s) in charge of the Library’s bento box system Library Search.

  • supports the integration of the discovery layer and Library Search system with other systems.

  • liaises with, and acts as primary contact for students, faculty, and staff regarding the discovery layer and the locally-managed Library Search.

  • serves as an active member of the Library’s ILS working group, and participates in other Library working groups and committees.

  • develops, supports, and advocates for discovery services that are user-centred, making use of inputs including analytics, test results, feedback, and user experience data.

  • ensures excellent discoverability of Library resources informed by best practices and trends.

  • tests new customizations, functionality, and regular system updates for the discovery layer and Library Search.

  • manages problem reports and follows up with system vendors or local development staff.

Findability of digital collections

  • Optimizes metadata and collections structure in digital collections to improve findability, as a member of the Digital Collections team, and working closely with colleagues in the Resource Acquisition, Management, & Metadata division (RAMM), and other parts of the Library.

First level support and troubleshooting

  • Along with support technicians, is a first point of contact for staff and members of the public for digital or online services.

  • Proactively and collaboratively solves problems, finds solutions, and troubleshoots.

Other duties

  • Other duties, as assigned.



  • Master's degree in Library or Information Studies from an ALA accredited program, or its equivalent, and a minimum of two years experience administering relevant technology in libraries or comparable organizations.

  • A demonstrated commitment to public service with an ability to recognize, respect, and work effectively with individuals and groups with diverse perspectives and backgrounds.

  • Knowledge of, commitment to, and experience advocating for usability principles and user-centred service.

  • Excellent oral and written English language skills and excellent interpersonal and intercultural communication skills, including the ability to:

    • write clearly and concisely in plain language.

    • effectively explain technical concepts in non-technical terms, in writing and verbally.

    • listen with empathy and respect.

  • Excellent organizational and project management skills, including the ability to:

    • initiate, organize, set, and follow through on priorities, working independently and as part of a team.

    • take responsibility for following up on unresolved issues.

    • achieve consensus.

  • Demonstrated analytical, technical, and troubleshooting skills for applications in a large and complex environment.

  • Knowledge of XML and metadata standards, and familiarity with library service platforms or integrated library systems.

  • Commitment to continuing self-directed learning; ability to effectively learn, adapt to, and use existing and emerging technologies and software.

  • Ability to embrace change, think creatively, and work independently.


  • Demonstrated experience with configuring public views of library services platform (LSP) components.

  • Comfortable manipulating metadata using a variety of tools.

  • Experience with common web technologies, including HTML5 and CSS3.

  • Experience with the OAI-PMH protocol for metadata harvesting.

  • Familiarity with working with APIs and web services.

  • Experience dealing with vendors and service providers.

  • Awareness of accessibility standards.

Terms of appointment

This is a continuing Librarian position beginning 30 September 2019 or as soon as the successful candidate is available.

Librarians and Division Heads are members of the SFU Faculty Association. Terms, conditions and benefits of employment are outlined in the Collective Agreement.

The successful applicant will be appointed at a salary level commensurate with their experience and qualifications. View SFU Librarian salary scales.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. Simon Fraser University is committed to employment equity and encourages applications from qualified candidates of all genders, including visible minorities, persons of Aboriginal heritage, persons with disabilities, and LGBTQ-identified persons.

Under the authority of the University Act, personal information that is required by the University for academic appointment competitions will be collected. For further details see SFU’s Collection Notice.


Published: Tuesday, May 28, 2019 02:08 UTC

Last updated: Tuesday, May 28, 2019 02:08 UTC