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Library Clerk

Library clerks help librarians and library technicians by serving library users and performing many of the clerical tasks involved in library work.

  • Avg. Salary $27,254.00
  • Avg. Wage $24.53
  • Minimum Education High school diploma
  • Outlook above avg
  • Employed 2,500
  • In Demand Lower
Also Known As

Circulation Assistant, Customer Services Specialist, Information Clerk, Library Assistant

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Library Clerks (1451) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Library Clerks (B551) 
  • 2011 NOC: Library assistants and clerks (1451) 
  • 2016 NOC: Library assistants and clerks (1451) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

Average Wage
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 10 kg
Interest Codes
The Library Clerk is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Library Clerks

Interest in comparing information to reshelve books and other materials; and to maintain journal subscriptions


Interest in assisting users to gain access to materials and to make interlibrary loans


Interest in handling to issue and receive books and other materials

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Updated Mar 04, 2021

In general, library clerks:

  • Issue materials to library users using online software
  • Check for damage when materials are returned
  • Deal with library users' questions and concerns and, when appropriate, refer them to other library staff members
  • Sort and shelf materials
  • Help people find books and other materials
  • Photocopy and mail out material
  • Maintain records of overdue books and issue notices
  • Accept fine payments
  • Reserve requested materials
  • Sort and stamp mail
  • Do related word processing, as required

Other duties depend upon the size and nature of the library. Library clerks also may:

  • Issue library membership cards
  • Make minor repairs to damaged books
  • Answer telephone inquiries
  • Process new materials, including books, audiovisual materials and computer software
  • Enter bibliographic information into databases
  • Maintain the periodical section
  • Assist in delivering programming for children and adults
  • Keep online and paper files and pamphlets up to date
  • Assist in the preparation of displays
  • Issue photocopier cards
  • Reconcile daily cash deposit

Many duties are automated. In large libraries, duties generally are divided among a number of library or circulation clerks.

Working Conditions
Updated Mar 04, 2021

Public, college and university libraries require library clerks to work some evenings and weekends, usually on a rotating basis. School and business libraries normally are open only during regular school and business hours. Lifting up to 10 kilograms may be required. Repetitive motions are performed to complete duties.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 10 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Mar 04, 2021

Library clerks need:

  • Patience and a strong customer service orientation
  • Flexibility and resourcefulness
  • An ability to communicate effectively both orally and written
  • Interpersonal skills
  • An ability to work with alone or as part of a team
  • To be detail oriented
  • Accuracy while doing repetitive tasks
  • Working knowledge of Microsoft Office programs
  • Understanding of the Dewey Decimal System and other classification systems used for library collections

They should enjoy taking a methodical approach to tasks such as re-shelving books, helping people find information, and working with equipment such as computers.

Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 04, 2021

Most employers prefer to hire people who have:

  • High school diploma or GED
  • Related education or training
  • Keyboarding and computer skills
  • Volunteer or work experience in a library
  • Past work experience in a service capacity, helping the public

Post-secondary education is a definite asset.

Once hired, library clerks are trained on the job or take related post-secondary courses (for more information, see the Library Technician occupational profile).

Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Red River College

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 04, 2021

There is currently no provincial legislation regulating this occupation in Alberta.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 04, 2021

Library clerks are employed in:

  • Public libraries
  • Public and private school libraries
  • College, research and university libraries
  • Corporate, government, hospital and legal libraries

Some positions are part time. Advancement to library technician positions requires completion of a 2-year post-secondary diploma program (see the Library Technician occupational profile).

In Alberta, 77% of people employed as library clerks work in the Information, Culture and Recreation [pdf] industry.

The employment outlook [pdf] in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • Trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the Information, Culture and Recreation industry)
  • Location in Alberta
  • Employment turnover (when people leave existing positions)
  • Occupational growth (when new positions are created)
  • Size of the occupation

In Alberta, the 1451: Library assistants and clerks occupational group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 2.1% from 2019 to 2023. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 58 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

NOC groups often include several related occupations. Although there is labour market data for the larger NOC group, this occupation makes up only a part of that group. It means data for this occupation may be different than the data shown. For example, only some of the 58 new positions to be created will be for this occupation. It also applies to other data for the NOC group such as number of people employed.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 04, 2021

Salaries for library clerks vary greatly depending upon the responsibilities of the position, the nature and location of the library, and the clerk's qualifications.

Library assistants and clerks

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $15.00 $29.13 $21.55 $21.84
Overall $15.15 $35.16 $24.53 $25.18
Top $15.75 $35.84 $26.52 $28.41

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

A: High Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

High Reliability, represents a CV of less than or equal to 6.00% and 30 survey observations and/or represents 50% or more of all estimated employment for the occupation.

Industry Information
Public Administration
Educational Services
Information, Culture, Recreation

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years


Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties


Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months


Vacancy Rate

Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Education and Library Studies
  • Personal and Food Services

Updated Mar 04, 2021. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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