Recruitment #2402-2641DC-001




The Library Reference Assistant (LRA) performs public service duties at the reference desk of a branch library or at the Central Library as well as a variety of non-public duties that affect the quality of services provided to the public. 

Essential Functions

Customer Service and Reference

  • Assist the public with self-service resources including photocopiers, printers, computers, software applications, online registration, and holds-pickup.
  • Provide reference and readers’ advisory services in person, by telephone, by e-mail, and via Instant Message. 
  • Search indexes, bibliographies, and other references sources in response to patrons’ requests.
  • Determine availability of materials by using online catalogues and databases.
  • Provide technical support and assistance to staff and the public, including basic troubleshooting of computers, printers, and photocopiers.
  • Refer patrons to other community organizations and functions that may provide additional assistance or support.

Collection and Program Support

  • Under mentorship of a Librarian or Manager, observe and provide collection development support including using data, tools, and resources to make selection and deselection recommendations.
  • Assist with standing order and serials review, creation and maintenance of files and indexes for special collections.
  • Review missing lists and other reports through CountyCat, updating location codes, and distributing books. 
  • Provide program support for librarian staff including participating in planning, scheduling, and the delivery of programs. 

System Support

  • Provide emergency assistance throughout MPL system.
  • Serve on committees as assigned.
  • Perform minor repairs of materials.
  • Maintain varies files including current event schedules, meeting room schedules, etc.
  • Develop displays of library materials.

We welcome qualified individuals with disabilities who are interested in employment and will make reasonable accommodations during the hiring process in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, as amended by the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008.

Conditions of Employment

  • Ability to lift and move items weighing up to 10 pounds occasionally.
  • Supply emergency help at other MPL libraries as requested.
  • Must be willing and able to work week days, evening, and weekend hours as assigned.

Minimum Requirements

  1. Regular status as a City of Milwaukee employee, having successfully completed a probationary period for a civil service position, or status as a City of Milwaukee employee in a fixed term position.
  2. Bachelor’s degree in any major from an accredited college or university.
  3. Completion of a three-credit reference course from an accredited college or university within one year of appointment. 

Equivalent combinations of education and experience may be considered.

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities & Other Characteristics


  • Ability to read and understand work-related documents such as manuals, policies, and procedures.
  • Ability to learn and use job-specific computer programs.
  • Ability to perform basic reference and reader’s advisory work.
  • Ability to perform detailed work of a technical nature accurately and efficiently.
  • Ability to sort items accurately in alphabetical and numeric order.

Customer Service and Communication

  • Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer service.
  • Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Ability to communicate information and ideas in writing such as reports, business correspondence, email messages, and procedure manuals.
  • Verbal communication skills to be able to share information with patrons clearly.
  • Ability to interact effectively with staff and patrons.
  • Ability to practice active listening by giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, and asking questions as appropriate.
  • Ability to work cooperatively in a team-oriented, collaborative environment with people whose backgrounds may differ from one’s own. 

Professionalism and Judgment

  • Ability to use logic and reasoning to identify problems and make sound decisions.
  • Ability to problem solve, establishing systematic methods of accomplishing goals.
  • Ability to multi-task and respond rapidly and effectively to changing priorities.
  • Ability to maintain accurate work records.
  • Honesty, ability to safeguard library resources, and ability to maintain confidentiality.

Current Salary

The current salary range (PR 2CN) is $51,468-$59,242 annually, and the current resident incentive salary range for City of Milwaukee residents is $53,012-$61,019 annually. Appointment will be made in accordance with the provisions of the salary ordinance.

Selection Process

THE SELECTION PROCESS will be job related and will consist of one or more of the following: an evaluation of related education, experience and accomplishments, an evaluation of written communication, interviews, and/or other assessment methods. The Department of Employee Relations and the Milwaukee Public Library reserve the right to call only the most qualified candidates to proceed in the selection process. Information from the selection process will be used to make a hiring decision. Selected candidates will be transferred and/or promoted to the position.

INITIAL FILING DATE – The selection process will be held as soon as practical after the deadline listed above. Receipt of applications may be discontinued at any time after this date without prior notice. However, recruitment may continue until the needs of the City have been met. The applicant is responsible for attending all phases of the selection process at the time and place designated by the hiring authority.

NOTE: Transfer/Promotional Opportunities and Promotional Examinations are not open to Milwaukee Public Schools employees or to the public. Only current City of Milwaukee employees and civilian personnel in MFD and MPD hired through a City Service Commission process who have successfully passed a probationary period for a Civil Service position or who have status as a City of Milwaukee employee in a fixed term position will be considered. Individuals with exempt, provisional, temporary, or emergency appointments are not eligible for transfer.

Additional Information

APPLICATIONS and further information can be accessed by visiting

  • Applications and transcripts should be submitted no later than the deadline listed above.
  • If you would like assistance completing an application, please contact the Department of Employee Relations at (414) 286-3751 or
  • The Department of Employee Relations is located in City Hall, 200 E Wells St, Room 706, Milwaukee, WI 53202.


EEO 204

The City of Milwaukee values and encourages diversity and is an equal opportunity employer.