The Revised 2012–2013 ARL Salary Survey · 9
The Revised 2012–2013 ARL Salary Survey
The ARL Annual Salary Survey 2012–2013 reports salary data for all professional staff working in ARL libraries.
The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) represents the interests of libraries that serve major North American
research institutions. The Association operates as a forum for the exchange of ideas and as an agent for collective
action to influence forces affecting the ability of these libraries to meet the future needs of scholarship. The
ARL Statistics and Assessment program, which produces the salary survey, is organized around collecting,
analyzing, and distributing quantifiable information describing the characteristics of research libraries. The
ARL Annual Salary Survey is the most comprehensive and thorough guide to current salaries in large US and
Canadian academic and research libraries and is a valuable management and research tool.
The job categories and subcategories for the university libraries in the ARL Annual Salary Survey 2012–2013 have
been revised and modernized after an extensive review process led by the Task Force on Reviewing the ARL
Statistics, the ARL Annual Salary Survey and the ARL Supplementary Statistics. Members of the ARL Statistics
and Assessment Committee and the task force interviewed ARL directors during the spring of 2011 and
collected feedback that helped them articulate the key issues, questions, and revisions for annual data collection
purposes. This feedback was shared with ARL library directors and salary survey contacts, and the final list of
job categories was approved by the ARL Statistics and Assessment Committee in April of 2011.
As a result of this revision process, for the first time, the salary survey collected working job titles for the
university libraries to evaluate the new job categories and their use in response to feedback from survey
coordinators. Also, two new categories of specialists—Administrative Specialists (ADMSPEC) and Digital
Specialists (DIGITALSPEC)—and seven new subcategories were added to the ARL Annual Salary Survey 2012–
2013 (DEV, SCHOLAR, IT, DIGIACQ, DIGICUR, ASSESS, AND CTL). Three job categories were removed from
the ARL Annual Salary Survey 2012–2013: HDDOC, HDMAP, HDSER, and many of the descriptions for the old
job categories were revised and expanded, as well.
Many of the new categories reflect librarians’ expanding roles in assessment and in the creation, stewardship,
provision of access to, and preservation of digital/digitized content. As a result, the new and revised job
categories will provide a better description of the true scope of the current work responsibilities and emerging
roles of librarians in research libraries. Please see the instructions for the ARL Annual Salary Survey 2012–2013 on
page 118 for a more complete list of the new and revised job categories.
Initial diagnostics showed that some of the new categories were used to code a small number of library
professionals. These categories have been aggregated into larger groups. The broader Administrative Specialist
category and the Administrative Support subcategory, ADMSPEC (no subgroup, n=12) and ADMIN (n=179),
respectively, were combined to create one category for those who provide general administrative support that
may also encompass marketing, communications, and IP permissions work. The broader Digital Specialist
category, DIGITALSPEC (no subgroup, n=12), was combined with two other subcategories that also describe
specialized responsibilities of those who may work with digital/digitized collections: Scholarly Communications
(SCHOLAR, n=52) and Institutional Repository Curator (IR, n=21). Finally, the broader Functional Specialist
category, FSPEC (no subgroup, n=194), and the Coordinator, Team Leader (non-supervisory responsibility)
subcategory, CTL (n=11), were combined to create one broad category for individuals whose specialized work is
not subject based and who do not have significant supervisory responsibilities.
This revision of the ARL Annual Salary Survey job categories was conducted with the understanding that the
salary survey attempts to provide a standardized schema to fit more than 100 different and complex research
library structures. So, any such standardization is viewed as a reasonable and practical schema that meets
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