youthful librarian vs someone who had been in the discipline for 20 + years.

Mens Suit

By Flickr user Kazamatsuri

This anonymous interview is with a public librarian who has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee. This librarian works at a library with 200+ staff members in the Western US.  S/he says

We are a county library system which covers rural, suburban and urban 

What Candidates Should Wear

Should the candidate wear a suit to the interview?

√ Probably, yes (but it’s ok if the candidate wears something a little less formal)

An outfit with a coordinated blazer and trousers:

√ Counts as a suit

Bare arms are inappropriate in an interview, even in the summer.

√ Other: In our area the temps can get well up into the 110’s–here I would say short sleeves would be ok depending on what they are paired with.

If a woman wears a skirt to an interview, should she also wear pantyhose?

√ Other: depends on the fashion in your locale. See above regarding temps in the 100’s

Women should wear make-up to an interview:

√ Other: Once again it depends on the person–I have rosacea, I would always wear makeup, but if you are 25 and have beautiful skin why would you need to?

Do you expect different levels of formality of dress, depending on the position you’re hiring for?

√ Yes, the higher the position, the more formal I expect the candidate to dress

Which jewelry may candidates wear: (Please select all that are acceptable)

√ Single, simple necklace, bracelet, and/or ring
√ A few simple necklaces, bracelets, and/or rings
√ Arty or more elaborate necklaces, bracelets, or rings
√ Earrings

The way a candidate dresses should:

√ Other: A & B above as appropriate for the position.

How does what a candidate wears affect your hiring decision?

Yes, I would expect a different level from a department head than from a library aide, youthful librarian vs someone who had been in the discipline for 20 + years.

What This Library Wears

How do you dress when you are going to conduct an interview?

I prefer to dress more formally. It helps me to set the tone of the interview.

On a scale of one (too dressed up for my workplace) to five (too casual), khakis and a polo shirt are:


What’s the dress code at your library/organization?

√ Business casual

Are there any specific items of clothing, etc. that are forbidden by your dress code? (Please check all that apply)

√ Jeans
√ Flip flops
√ Short skirts/shorts
√ Tank tops
√ Logos/band insignia/slogans
√ Other: We can wear jeans on casual Fridays. We have a formal dress code–it is slightly different for library aides than for other staff.

Librarians at your organization wear: (Please check all that apply)

√ Name tags

This survey was co-authored by Jill of Librarian Hire Fashion – submit your interview outfit to her blog!

Photo:  Men’s Suit By Flickr user Kazamatsuri


Filed under 200+ staff members, Public, Western US, What Should Candidates Wear?

3 responses to “youthful librarian vs someone who had been in the discipline for 20 + years.

  1. LabLib

    Perhaps they meant to say “new”, not “youthful?” At least, I hope so.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.