This paper shares research based on interviews with 12 UK university senior managers commissioned by SCONUL and carried out by external consultants which found that libraries can have a positive impact on student satisfaction and experience and are a source of institutional information about the student body. Libraries are seen very much as supporting learning and teaching; centrality to research was less apparent. They are rarely seen as problematic except in terms of future resource levels, but there is awareness that rapid change will continue to affect libraries; library leaders will need to provide innovative solutions to this and other challenges. The need for strategic alignment is key. These findings are seen within the context of a survey of senior librarians carried out by SCONUL showing a trend towards greater centralisation of services. The position of the senior librarian is now lower down the reporting structure than in the past.