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 six months to a year. This person is looking in academic, archives, and special libraries, at the following levels: entry level, requiring at least two years of experience.
This job hunter is in a city/town in the Northeastern US and is relocating for other reasons.
What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?
Where do you look for open positions?
Institutions’ HR pages
state library board webpage
Do you expect to see salary range listed in a job ad?
√ Other: Only for certain kinds of employers
What’s your routine for preparing an application packet? How much time do you spend on it?
Resume editing – changing the language to match the language/vocabulary used by the hiring institution. Not to change what I have done, but to make sure it is clear to them that I have met certain criteria and had specific work experience they are looking for.
Job description – List experiences/scenarios/examples under each requirement so that I can use them in my cover letter.
Cover letter – complete rewrite of a letter used for a similar type of job.
References – contact references, get permission to list them on the application, send them the job ad
3 – 4 hours, depending… sometime up to 6 hours
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 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
√ Meeting with HR to talk about benefits/salary
√ Being able to present
What do you think employers should do to get the best candidates to apply?
Consider skills learned in past careers or more unique paths to the library field.
Be specific in the job advertisements without using jargon and vague language.
Be clear and specific with experience requirements.
Indicate if there is an internal candidate.
What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?
Contacting applicants as quickly as possible.
If applicants have been selected for an interview, contact the others. Tell them or update the job’s status to say “interviews in process” – at least then people will know. I don’t think most people expect personal contact regarding each job, but updating the job status would be helpful (not just open or filled).
What do you think is the secret to getting hired?
Having variety of experience.
Involvement in professional organizations.
Numbers – apply to every job you want (and are qualified for).
Do you have any comments, or are there any other questions you think we should add to this survey?
Would like to know how many jobs people apply to during their job hunt.
Are you hunting for a new LIS job? Take the survey! http://tinyurl.com/hiringlibJOBHUNTERsurvey
This survey was co-authored by Naomi House from I Need A Library Job – Do you need one? Check it out!