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 less than six months. This person is looking in academic 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 Midwestern US and is willing to move anywhere.
What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?
1) Pleasant co-workers 2) Decent salary 3) Opportunity to innovate
Where do you look for open positions?
Professional listservs, the NOCAL AALL job list, sometimes ALA Joblist, sometimes LibGig
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 re-write my entire cover letter, tweak my resume as appropriate, confirm with references that they are available, and do a final search of the job ad for keywords that I try to insert or refer to in my cover letter. I usually spend between two and four hours on it. I probably used to spend more time, but now I have a job and am looking for another one, so I have less time to spend than when I was unemployed.
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
√ 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)?
√ Being taken out to meal
√ Meeting department members/potential co-workers
√ Meeting with HR to talk about benefits/salary
What do you think employers should do to get the best candidates to apply?
I don’t think they’re having a huge problem with that one, honestly.
What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?
It would be so much simpler if it were possible to email candidates who weren’t selected for a phone interview and inform these candidates that the search has moved on and that the institution can be crossed off the consideration list. Often phone interviews happen a full month (or way more!) before final consideration and really, it’s a kindness to let non-advancing candidates know.
What do you think is the secret to getting hired?
If I knew, I wouldn’t have so many failed applications.
Do you have any comments, or are there any other questions you think we should add to this survey?
Thanks for asking!
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!