Having an Established Reputation in the Field

Girl looking in a rock pool, about 1890. Collection of National Media Museum/Kodak Museum

This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who is currently employed (even if part-time or in an unrelated field), has not been hired within the last two months, and has been looking for a new position for six months to a year. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Archives, Public libraries, Special libraries, Federal and other government agencies, and research centers, at the following levels: Senior Librarian, Archivist, and Collection Curator. This job hunter is in an urban area in the Western US, and is not willing to move.

What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?

Professional status, quality salary, compatibility with staff.

Where do you look for open positions?

professional listserv, local job lines (i.e. Colorado Library Jobline), Indeed, institutional HR pages.

Do you expect to see salary range listed in a job ad?

√ Yes, and it’s a red flag when it’s not

What’s your routine for preparing an application packet? How much time do you spend on it?

Depends on the type of job. I spend the most time on my cover letter, tailoring it to the position. My resume and CV generally remain the same and are submitted based on what is required for the application.

Have you ever stretched the truth, exaggerated, or lied on your resume, or at some other point during the hiring process?

√ No

When would you like employers to contact you?

√ To tell me if I have or have not been selected to move on to the interview stage
√ Once the position has been filled, even if it’s not me

How do you prefer to communicate with potential employers?

√ Other: either phone or email

Which events during the interview/visit are most important to your assessment of the position (i.e. deciding if you want the job)?

√ Tour of facility
√ Meeting department members/potential co-workers

What do you think employers should do to get the best candidates to apply?

Be as specific as possible in the job announcement. More information is better.

What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?

Acknowledge applicants who have not been selected for an interview as soon as possible. Allow applicants to call HR to check on the status of their application so that as the months pass without any acknowledgement, it can be up to the applicant to gather updates.

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

Knowing someone at the institution where you are applying. Having an established reputation in the field. And luck.

This survey was co-authored by Naomi House from I Need A Library Job – Do you need one?  Check it out!

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1 Comment

Filed under Academic, Archives, Job hunter's survey, Public, Special, Urban area, Western US

One response to “Having an Established Reputation in the Field

  1. Pingback: Job Hunters Respond! | INALJ

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