HR can tell when you just want a job instead of wanting THAT job.

IMG_1534Alexandra Patterson currently works as a Research Librarian at Mercersburg Academy. She recently revamped the acquisitions system and is currently undertaking a statistical study of circulation statistics. In her free time she runs a book blog (The Library of Alexandra). You can also find her on twitter @alexandrap529. She took the job hunter’s survey on May 6, 2014, while she had been job hunting for less than six months in academic, school and special libraries at the entry level. Ms. Patterson described her internship and volunteering experience as,

I have interned at a public library for a year, done ebook work for a few months and served as a graduate assistant at a large science research library for the past year.

Ms. Patterson was in an urban area of the Northeastern US, and was willing to move anywhere.

What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?

Alignment with my interests

Where do you look for open positions?

ALA JobList
Oberlin Group
SERIALIST listserv

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?

I copy and paste the required and preferred qualifications into a word document and start listing my skills and/or accomplishments that line up with them. I then construct a cover letter from this document.

For my resume, I look at my “master resume” file which is about 10 pages long. I pick and choose accomplishments to highlight based on the posting.

The process takes me a few hours + an hour or so to do the online application portion.

Have you ever stretched the truth, exaggerated, or lied on your resume, or at some other point during the hiring process?

√ No

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?

√ Email

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
√ Other: the types of questions the committee focuses on

What do you think employers should do to get the best candidates to apply?

Post jobs to multiple locations and be sure to list a salary! So many positions don’t and that can be a real stumbling block.

What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?

Online forms may be required for HR but they certainly don’t help instill a desire to apply. Cutting out that step, at least until it’s absolutely required for on-boarding, would make applications a lot easier.

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

Apply to jobs about which you are passionate. HR can tell when you just want a job instead of wanting THAT job.

For some context, take a look at the most recently published summary of responses.

Are you hunting for a new LIS job? Take the survey!

This survey was co-authored by Naomi House from I Need A Library Job – Do you need one? Check it out!


Filed under Job hunter's survey, Public

2 responses to “HR can tell when you just want a job instead of wanting THAT job.

  1. Pingback: Job Hunter Follow Up: Alexandra Patterson | Hiring Librarians

  2. Pingback: Job Hunter Follow Up: Alexandra Patterson | Hiring Librarians

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