Write the Sweetest Rejection Letters

Eerste Wereldoorlog, luchtoorlogThis anonymous interview is with a job hunter who is not currently employed, has not been hired within the last two months, and has been looking for a new position for More than 18 months. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Public libraries, and Special libraries, at the following levels: Entry level. This job hunter is in a rural area in the Western US and is willing to move to the Eastern US.

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

Congenial working conditions
salary & benefits
professional development

Where do you look for open positions?

Alerts from particular employers
ALA joblist
INALJ
SLA
USAjobs

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

√  No (even if I might think it *should* be)

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

I review and reread the job posting several times. I consider whether I have a reasonable “argument,” that I am a candidate for the job. I consider how to address weak spots. I review my resume and tweak it if I need to. I write a cover letter. Then I go online and complete the application. It takes 2-8 hours.

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 acknowledge my application
√ 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

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

Simplify and clarify the job posting. It’s easier for a candidate to determine whether they’d be a good fit that way. Some of the job postings I’ve seen want a candidate to do everything and be qualified for everything. I’ve seen job postings offering ten dollars an hour and requiring years of experience for a person who will do everything, even walk the dog. It’s just crazy.

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

More communication. Write the sweetest rejection letters. I wish employers would be more honest. Sometimes I know that is not possible, but I would like to know if the interview process is a charade (that is, they already have someone in mind) or if I actually have a chance.

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

Knowing people before the job posting.

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

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