This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who is currently employed (even if part-time or in an unrelated field) and was hired within the last two months. This person is/has been looking for a new position for more than 18 months. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Library vendor/service providers, Public libraries, School libraries, Special libraries, bookstores, and anything, at the entry level and for positions requiring at least two years of experience. Here is how this person describes experience with internships/volunteering:
I had a 3 month service learning project volunteering (menial tasks) at a small library, and a 6 month project at a public library in adult services.
This job hunter is in a suburban area in the Midwestern US, and is/was willing to move anywhere.
What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?
1) Full time hours and benefits
2) A good supervisor
3) I prefer the Chicagoland area
Where do you look for open positions?
Reaching Across Illinois Library Systems (RAILS) job board
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?
It depends on what the institution requires. A resume and cover letter are not going to take as long as a resume/cover letter/references/application/online job application.
I spend a good 5-10 minutes comparing my resume to the position description, noting keywords that I can use on my resume to highlight my applicable skills.
Have you ever stretched the truth, exaggerated, or lied on your resume, or at some other point during the hiring process?
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
√ To follow-up after an interview
√ Once the position has been filled, even if it’s not me
How do you prefer to communicate with potential employers?
√ Phone for good news, email for bad news
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
√ Being able to present
What do you think employers should do to get the best candidates to apply?
Is this a problem? I was under the impression that employers are bombarded with resumes for every position. Surely, they can find a qualified applicant.
What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?
ROB: I just tested for [a job]…
MIKE: …yeah, a month ago.
CHARLES: Oh, I’m sorry. How’d your folks take it?
ROB: I haven’t heard an official “no” yet.
Seriously, you can’t contact me enough. Tell me you’re sorry and you are going to interview other candidates. Tell me that the position has been filled. Don’t leave me feeling like I just sent my resume into a black hole. And don’t send me a snail mail letter 3 months after I’ve already forgotten I applied for that job. Is it too much to ask for a timely response?
What do you think is the secret to getting hired?
It is, without a doubt, knowing someone and networking. Which is why it is miserable for the long term unemployed.
This survey was co-authored by Naomi House from I Need A Library Job – Do you need one? Check it out!