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Common Recruitment Pool

Library Assistant





1. Character

Each candidate must be of good character.

2. Health

Each candidate must be in a state of health such as would indicate a reasonable prospect of ability to render regular and efficient service.

3. Education, training, experience, etc

Each candidate must, on the latest date for receipt of completed application forms -

a) Each candidate must have a good general level of education.
b) Hold a full clean current driving licence in respect of Category B Vehicles or equivalent in the EU Model Driving Licence on the latest date for the receipt of completed applications.

Job Description

The Role:

A Library Assistant Officer is the entry grade in the local authority Library Service who works as part of a multidisciplinary team to meet the wide ranging information, education, research and cultural needs of both the citizens of County Laois and its visitors. Laois County Council’s Library Service which is headquartered in Portlaoise manages and supports a network of ten public libraries strategically located across the county.

Library Assistants make a valuable contribution to the provision of the library service by delivering frontline service and by providing support to library management. The duties of the Library Assistant shall be consistent with the provision of a modern public library service that is responsive to the changing requirements of customers of all ages and abilities.

The ideal candidate will have:

• An understanding of the Council’s purpose and knowledge of public service organisation in Ireland;
• An interest in information, the local government and it’s history & culture;
• An ability to work effectively within a team to achieve a common goal, ensuring standards are adhered to and maintained;
• An excellent customer service ethos;
• Good interpersonal and communications skills;
• Administration experience and good organisational skills;
• A high level of proficiency in operating ICT System
• An ability to plan and prioritise work effectively;

Skills and Competencies:

Key Competencies for the post will be examined under the following headings and candidates will be expected to demonstrate sufficient evidence within their application form of competence under each.

Competency 1 – Information Management & Processing
• Organisational & ICT skills
• Ability to understand and adhere to procedures and processes
• Analytical skills

Competency 2 – Team Working
• Inter-personal skills and ability to communicate effectively with a wide range of stakeholders
• Develop and maintain good working relationships within teams
• Demonstrate dignity and respect for colleagues
• Understand own role and personal contribution within a team

Competency 3 – Delivering Results:
• Flexibility in approach to work
• Adapting quickly to change and new ways of doing things
• Taking responsibility for delivering quality work in a timely manner
• Assessing and prioritising workloads
• Ensuring accuracy and high standards in work delivered
• Using initiative and self-motivation when required

Competency 4 – Customer Service & Communications Skills
• Communicating clearly
• Actively listening
• Demonstrating positive customer service attitude and ethos

Competency 5 – Personal Effectiveness
• Knowledge of key plans and policies under which the library service operates
• Clear knowledge and understanding about the local authority, its services generally and role of Councillors
• Commitment to self-development and improving skills and knowledge base
• Enthusiastic and energetic about the role
• Striving to perform at a higher level
• Acting with honesty and integrity
• Treating others in a fair and consistent manner
• Resilience when faced with difficult situations




1. The position is wholetime and permanent.

Persons who become pensionable employees of a local authority under the Single Public Service Pension Scheme will be liable to pay the Class A rate of PRSI contribution will be required in respect of their superannuation to contribute to the local authority at the rate of 3.5% of their net pensionable remuneration plus 3.0% of pensionable remuneration.

2. Probation

Where persons who are not already permanent employees of a local authority are appointed to a permanent position, the following provisions shall apply, that is to say:-

a) there shall be a period after such appointment takes effect during which such persons shall hold such position on probation;

b) such period shall be ten months but the Chief Executive may at his or her discretion extend such period;

c) such person shall cease to hold such position at the end of the period of probation unless during such period the Manager has certified that the service of such person is satisfactory.

3 Location: - There are 10 Branches (Abbeyleix, Ballylinan, Durrow, Mountmellick, Mountrath, Portarlington, Portlaoise, Rathdowney, Borris-in-Ossory & Stradbally). Library Assistants may be assigned to any one of the Branches.

4. Salary

€23,122 - €38,722 (LSI 1)

The salary shall be fully inclusive and shall be as determined from time to time. The holder of the position shall pay to the local authority any fees or other monies (other than inclusive salary) payable to or received by him/her by virtue of his/her position or in respect of any services which he/she is required by or under any enactment to perform.

In accordance with EL02/2011 persons who are not serving Local Authority employees must be placed on the minimum of the scale. Where a person being appointed is a serving Local Authority employee normal starting pay rules will apply.

The rate of remuneration may be adjusted from time to time in line with government policy.

5. Duties

The duties shall be such as may be assigned to the employee from time to time by the Local Authority and shall include the duty of deputising for other employees of the Local Authority, when required, and such duties as may be assigned to him/ her in relation to the area of any other Local Authority.

The duties of the Library Assistant shall be such clerical/administrative library duties as may be assigned from time to time by Laois County Council Libraries. They shall include deputising, when required, for other employees of the Council, lone working and such duties as may be assigned in relation to the area of any other Local Authority. Duties will include but are not limited to:

a) Frontline staff dealing with the public/customer care (e.g. responding to queries and providing information);

• Shelving and tidying of library material;
• Issue and discharge of library material;
• Process reservations for material;
• Deal with queries from the public on the collections or various services of Laois County Council Libraries;
• Help library users retrieve information and access library and other services;
• Book processing – covering, labelling, mending and shelving of library material;
• Assist in the organisation and delivery of events: book clubs; hobby clubs; parent and toddler groups; storytelling etc.;

b) General clerical and administrative duties relevant to the Library Service, e.g. cash management, attendance returns, Health & Safety checklist, branch statistics, filing, photocopying, scanning, telephone, post

c) Operating existing and future IT systems - word processing, spreadsheets, database, library systems, e-mail and internet;

• Assisting the public in using the self-service facilities and other I.T. equipment;
• Any other duties that may be assigned from time to time

The particular duties and responsibilities attached to the post may vary from time to time, without changing the general character of the duties or level of responsibilities entailed. The post holder may therefore be required to perform duties appropriate to the post, other than those detailed above, and to take instructions from and report to, an appropriate Officer or such designated Officer as may be assigned from time to time by the Council.

6. Working Hours

The working hours, at present, provide up to a 37 hour week on a rota system Mon – Sat. The role will also include evening work. Working hours may be reviewed at any time by the Council.

7. Driving Licence

Candidate must have a full clean driving licence of category “B” free from endorsement. Successful applicants will be required to produce their driving licence annually in order to enable the Council to verify the status of the licence.

8. Health

For the purpose of satisfying the requirement as to health it will be necessary for a successful candidate, before he/she is appointed, to undergo at his/her own expense, a medical examination by a qualified medical practitioner to be nominated by the local authority. On taking up appointment the expense of the medical examination will be refunded to the candidate.

9. Sick Leave

The terms of the Public Service Management (Sick Leave) Regulations 2014 as amended will prevail.

10. Residence

The holder of the position shall reside in the district in which his/her duties are to be performed or within a reasonable distance thereof.

11. Recruitment

a) Shortlisting Process
The local authority may decide, by reason of the number of persons seeking admission to a competition, to carry out a shortlisting procedure. The number of persons to be invited, in these circumstances, to interview, shall be determined by the local authority from time to time having regard to the likely number of vacancies to be filled. The local authority may at its discretion, decide that such shortlisting will be based on qualifications, relevant experience and information submitted on the application form.

In that regard, candidates should ensure they provide detailed and accurate information in completing the form, and demonstrate sufficient evidence that they possess the required competencies for the position. Alternatively, the local authority may at its discretion decide to shortlist by way of preliminary interview.

b) Competitive Interview
Selection of candidates for appointment shall be by means of a competitive interview. The competitive interview shall be conducted by or on behalf of the local authority. The Council is committed to a process of selection on merit, based on fair and open competition. The criteria for judging suitability and ranking will be related directly to the qualification, attributes and skills required to undertake the duties and responsibilities to the standard required in the post.

c) Panels
A panel may be formed on the basis of the interviews from which Library Assistants will be employed on a full-time permanent capacity within the life of the panel. Temporary contract positions, as they arise may also be offered, within the life of the panel.

d) References/Documentary Evidence
Each candidate may be required to submit as references the names and addresses of two responsible persons to whom he/she is well known but not related.

Candidates may be required to submit documentary evidence to the local authority in support of their application.

12. Garda Vetting

A person who is being considered for appointment will be required to complete a Garda Vetting application. The results of which will be considered before an offer of employment is made.

13. Commencement

The local authority shall require a person to whom an appointment is offered to take up such appointment within a period of not more than one month and is he/she fails to take up the appointment within such period or such period or such longer period as the local authority in its absolute discretion may determine, the local authority shall not appoint him/her.

14. Retirement

The Single Public Service Pension Scheme (“Single Scheme”) as provided by the Public Service Pensions (Single Scheme and Other Provisions) Act 2012 commenced with effect from 1st January 2013. The act introduces new pension and retirement provisions for new entrants to the public service appointed on or after 1st January 2013. Pension age set initially at 66 years; this will rise in step with statutory changes in the SPC age to 67 years in 2021 and 68 years in 2028. The compulsory retirement age of 70 applies. Otherwise the retirement age of the relevant Scheme applies.

Request application form

Contact Details

Laois County Council
Aras an Chontae
James Fintan Lalor Ave
Co. Laois


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Since the establishment of democratic local government local authorities have provided between them some 350,000 homes to people who could not otherwise house themselves.