This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who 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, public, and special libraries, at the following levels: entry level, requiring at least two years of experience. Here is this person’s experience with internships/volunteering:
Two field work courses in public libraries (I spent one semester organizing an event and the other working in collection development), and a summer internship in a public library where I worked on the reference desk. I have volunteered with different friends of the library groups over the last three years.
This job hunter is in a city/town in the Midwestern US.
Where do you look for open positions?
I Need a Library Job (INALJ), websites of local libraries (or county/city/municipal websites if jobs are listed there)
Do you expect to see salary range listed in a job ad?
√ Only for certain kinds of employers
What’s your routine for preparing an application packet? How much time do you spend on it?
I tweak my resume if necessary to highlight experience and skills relevant to the position. I take a few hours to write my cover letter after reviewing the library’s website.
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 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?
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 should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?
Just contacting candidates makes a big difference. A generic rejection email is much better than nothing.
It would also be wonderful if online application systems didn’t require the resume to be submitted multiple ways. I’ve filled out an application once where I had to attach my resume, copy and paste the contents of my resume to a text box, and also fill in a form asking for my contact, education, and employment information.
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!