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OPL 2023-2028 Strategic Plan

Oct 12, 2023

On Tuesday, October 10 2023, the Ottawa Public Library (OPL) Board approved a refreshed Strategic Plan, valid until 2028. The previous 2020-2023 Strategic Plan was approved by the Board in June 2019, and encompassed OPL’s Vision, Mission, Values, a Strategic Statement, Directions (the key areas in which resources will be focused), and Priorities (to guide operations). It was developed during a thorough and dynamic multi-year process which included extensive community engagement. 

In keeping with industry best practices, the 2020-2023 Plan was intended to endure beyond the immediate four-year cycle. This Plan incorporated consideration of trends and drivers, public input, and actions required, and many of the elements remain valid, useful, and achievable today. 

Several factors have influenced OPL operations in the years since the 2020-2023 Plan was developed, including pandemic restrictions on in-person public library services, and the larger social shifts influencing activities such as library use. Significant OPL strategic initiatives were also undertaken, such as the Service Delivery Framework (SDF) and a renewed commitment to community development work: these are now reflected in the Directions. 

Notably, the 2023-2028 Plan does not include the strategic statement approved in June 2019: “By 2023, we will increase the number of active cardholders by 25 percent by improving OPL’s community relevance.” In keeping with industry trends, OPL will focus on the value of all library activities, including those which do not require a card. Staff will continue to report on the active cardholder measure as an operational key performance indicator (KPI).

The 2023-2028 Strategic Plan is intended carry OPL past the opening of Ādisōke, and allow us time for a more fulsome renewal thereafter. Until then, I know that our shared Vision, Mission and Values continue to guide the important work that OPL engages in every day for our community.