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Why should your library complete a profile and keep it up-to-date?

What information should every library provide in its profile?
How can your library participate in the Global Reference Network and virtual groups?

Some profile information is needed from every library

Every library should provide the profile information that the QuestionPoint system needs for general operation. You should provide the needed information even if your library is not submitting a completed profile now to participate in the Global Reference Network or a virtual group. See What profile information should every library provide? for more information.

A completed profile is required to participate in the Global Reference Network

Your library is required to complete and submit a profile in order to participate in the Global Reference Network. Your profile is an important tool for identifying and sharing resources. It describes your library and the resources it will use to answer questions through the network.

Using the QuestionPoint Profile module, your institution administrator completes a profile and submits it to the Global Reference Network. After the Global Network administrator activates the profile, your library can refer questions to the network and receive questions from it.

Keep it up to date

Your library should continue to update the profile, as its capabilities, services, staff and resources change.

Automatic matching of questions and resources

The profiles of all libraries participating in the Global Reference Network are kept in a database. Reference requests are submitted to the network via a form. Data in each request is matched automatically against the data in the profile database to find the libraries best able to respond to the request. Information in profiles should be as precise and accurate as possible so each submitted request goes to the most appropriate library for an answer.

Requirements for matching

The Global Reference Network requires that you complete the profile parts and fields needed to match questions with the best sources for answers. For help learning which parts and fields the network requires, see Determine what information you need to provide in the profile.

Adjustments for better matching

If you receive a question through the network that is not appropriate for your library to answer, you can reject it so the network can send it to another library. As you gain experience with questions sent by the network, you can update the information in your library's profile to adjust the types of questions you receive to better match your library's resources.

About the Global Network

For additioanl information about the Global Reference Network and how it works, see About the Global Network.

How virtual groups use the profile

After the Global Network administrator activates your library's profile, your library can also join and participate in virtual groups whose members refer questions to each other or work together to cover questions submitted by the group's patrons. (These virtual groups are separate from the 24/7 Reference Cooperative.)

In addition, if your library participates in a subscription group, the group members may refer questions to each other. Your library must submit its profile to the subscription group and the group administrator must activate the profile in order for your library to participate.

The profile process for institution administrators

If you are a QuestionPoint institution administrator or someone helping to complete a library's profile for participation in the Global Reference Network or a virtual group, see the following for help with the steps of the profile process:

For additional help with the profile process, see the following:

The profile process for group administrators

If you are a QuestionPoint group administrator, see the following for help with the profile process:

For additional help with the profile process, see the following:



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