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 more than 18 months. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Archives, and Special libraries, at the following levels: Entry level and Requiring at least two years of experience. This new grad/entry level applicant has internship/volunteering experience:
Interned with a government collection and a non-profit. Have done a lot of volunteer work in digital library software development.
This job hunter is in a city/town in the Midwestern US, and may be willing to move but it
Depends on Salary/Benefits
What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?
An intellectual challenge
Collaborative and open rather than hierarchical work environment
Where do you look for open positions?
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?
I usually spend several days analyzing a posting to determine how exactly I fit the position and crafting a cover letter. My usual tactic is trying to make myself seem like the exact person the employer needs to solve this hole in the staffing needs.
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 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
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 honest and upfront about expectations.
What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?
Communicate. To not respond either way after an interview is rude and quite painful for the job seeker. This also means being clear with job seekers about what you need from them and are looking for in an employee.
What do you think is the secret to getting hired?
I honestly don’t know. I’m still struggling to figure that out.
Do you have any comments, or are there any other questions you think we should add to this survey?
I think what you’re doing is fascinating work and a great service to all librarians.
This survey was co-authored by Naomi House from I Need A Library Job - Do you need one? Check it out!