This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who is currently employed (even if part-time or in an unrelated field), has been hired within the last two months, and has been looking for a new position for more than 18 months. This person is looking in academic, archives, and special libraries, at the following levels: entry level, requiring at least two years of experience, and senior librarian. Here is this person’s experience with internships/volunteering:
I worked for the university music library and cataloging department at my school during my studies and volunteered after graduation. I also worked before, during, and after library studies in secondary and higher education.
This job hunter is in a city/town in the Southern US and is willing to move
only a short distance and only if absolutely necessary
What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?
job description that fits my education, skills, and experience
type of institution
Where do you look for open positions?
Do you expect to see salary range listed in a job ad?
√ Other: Yes, but if salary is not listed this does not mean I will not apply
What’s your routine for preparing an application packet? How much time do you spend on it?
Read the job ad carefully, making note of specific requirements and how I meet them.
Update my CV/resume.
Write a cover letter for the job, addressing important points from the ad. I often use a template from a letter I have written for a similar job in the past. Ask a colleague/mentor to proofread the letter.
Assemble any other materials.
Go over the job ad again.
At first, this took a couple of days to complete. Now, it is usually only a couple of 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 tell me if I have or have not been selected to move on to the interview stage
√ 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
√ 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?
Write clear job ads. Give more information on how long the search process might take if possible. Give information on potential salary and benefits.
What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?
Again, try to give candidates an idea of how long the process might take. Contact candidates about the progress of the search and when someone is hired, even if it’s not them.
What do you think is the secret to getting hired?
Being in the right place at the right time.
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!