Please Don’t Spare My Feelings

Kristen Hallows is ready for her next challenge.  She is a 2012 graduate of Kent State University’s School of Library and Information Science with experience in academic and law libraries., and has been looking for a new position for less than six months.  Ms. Hallows is looking in Academic libraries, Public libraries, and Law libraries, at the following levels: Entry level and Requiring at least two years of experience. This new grad has internship/volunteering experience:

I have volunteered for nearly one year in an academic library, and I have exactly one year of paid internship experience in an in-house law library.

She lives in a suburban area in the Midwestern US and is not willing to move. Follow her on Twitter @kristenhallows , view her latest work, on Health Information Literacy and the Elderly, here, or take a look at her body of scholarship here.

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

Stability (full-time, permanent); growth potential; pay (at least $40k per year)

Where do you look for open positions?

Library job boards; library Web sites; professional listserv; LinkedIn

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

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

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
√ 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)?

√ Other: Attitude of interviewers

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

They need to be completely honest from the very beginning of the process.  For example, rate of pay should be included in the job posting to avoid wasted time on both sides.

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

COMMUNICATE.  If I wasn’t chosen, I’d like to know why, and please don’t spare my feelings (please stop it with the “we’ve gone with another candidate who more closely matches our needs”).  This is even more important if I wasn’t selected to interview (please see my next response regarding the resume “black hole”)!

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

The secret is a champion (most often a real human being) who gets your resume in front of the right people.  Most of the time, I think it’s realistic to say that your application and resume are essentially sent into a black hole.  I worry that most of my applications are a waste of time and that no one actually looks at them, much less a decision maker.  I also suspect that employers are so inundated with applications that they simply don’t have the time to conduct a thorough investigation of my resume or application; in other words, they don’t have the time to decide whether or not I’m a good fit for the position.  As a result, they rely on less-than-ideal computer programs that use keyword matching, which just isn’t the same as having a real human being review your resume and make an informed decision about your appropriateness for the job.

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



Filed under Academic, Job hunter's survey, Midwestern US, Public, Suburban area

2 responses to “Please Don’t Spare My Feelings

  1. So sorry for the bad link! My paper, “Health Information Literacy and the Elderly: Has the Internet Had an Impact?” has been accepted for publication in The Serials Librarian. That’s why the paper was deleted from Scribd!

  2. Pingback: Job Hunter Follow Up: Kristen Hallows | Hiring Librarians

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