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, archives, and special libraries at the following levels: entry level; requiring at least two years of experience.
This job hunter is in a suburban area in the Northeastern US and is willing to move anywhere.
What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?
1. I want to work for an organization that is doing something good for the world. I currently work as an archivist/special collections librarian for a non-profit that is wonderful on the surface but mismanages its resources, and for the most part does not see the bigger picture. I’d like to actually know that I’m serving the public good. I don’t want to have to convince myself that I am!
2. I’d like to know that there is a chance for upward mobility even if it isn’t at the organization itself. I’d like to be able to constantly learn new skills.
3. Obviously full time, benefits, and permanent status would be wonderful. I’d also like to be in an academic setting with the possibility of tenure.
Where do you look for open positions?
INALJ is the first place for me. I also go to the sources themselves. I’m in the NY metropolitan area so I’ll go directly to CUNY and other institutes in the area. ALA Joblist, SAA, SLA, etc. I look at all of them.
Do you expect to see salary range listed in a job ad?
√ No (even if I might think it *should* be)
What’s your routine for preparing an application packet? How much time do you spend on it?
If it’s a job I really want or I really feel qualified for I’ll spend at least half a day on restructuring my resume (if needed) and writing up my cover letter. I try to write it from scratch and plug in some pieces from previous versions. It’s the best way to ensure I’m not being generic.
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?
√ 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
What do you think is the secret to getting hired?
Timing. Send in your packet and wait for the right time to proceed. If you call right after sending it you’ll look a little crazy. If you wait too long you might look like you forgot about it.
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!