Raymond Wang took the Job Hunter’s survey on February 27, 2013. His responses appeared as This Should Be a Profession That Cares and Has Empathy, Not a Profession That Reinforces a Dog Eat Dog World. We followed up with him last year on December 18, 2013.
What’s your current work situation?
I work as a full-time community services librarian at Millbrae Library. I finally get full time benefits that include retirement and health insurance.
Did you relocate for your job? If so, who paid?
I did relocate for my job and I paid for all of it.
How did you find the listing for your job?
I found it on the CALIX list serv, BayNet list-serv and APALA list-ser
Did you meet all of the required qualifications? How many of the desired qualifications?
I did meet all the required qualifications. I also met all the desired qualifications
What was the application process like? How many interviews did you do?
The application process was very long. Prior to the in-person interview, I had to submit a two-three minute video presentation of myself reading a children’s story. I also did a in-person panel interview and a follow-up telephone interview with a Chinese mandarin speaker.
How did you prepare for the interview(s)?
I studied up on all the required job qualifications, read the job announcement many times, checked the library’s websites, and looked over my cover letter and resume that I submitted. I also looked at sample interview questions from multiple library blogs including Hiring Librarians.
Did you know anyone in the organization that hired you? If so, how?
Yes, I knew two people on the panel interview. One person was in my professional library organization and the other one was in a non-profit library fundraiser organization.
Is your job commensurate with your skills, experience and expectations?
I would say that my job does commensurate with my skills and experience. I did not really know what to expect with my until I met with my manager and staff.
Is the pay scale higher or lower than you were looking for?
The pay scale was just about right for a librarian job anywhere else in the country, but due to the ever so increasingly high cost of living in the Bay Area it should be a little more.
What do you think was the biggest obstacle in your job hunt? How did you overcome it?
I would say getting the interview and beating the application pool.
What set you apart from the other applicants? Why did they hire you?
I think having knowledge of a foreign language really helped me and knowing people that are on the panel interview definitely did not hurt.
Your Job Hunt
How long did it take to find your job?
I finished library school in December 2010 so I would say almost 4 years
How many positions did you apply to?
I would say at least over 100.
How many interviews did you go on?
I would say I went to about 10-15 interviews
What was your work situation while you were job hunting?
I was unemployed, volunteering, and freelancing as a tutor
Were you volunteering anywhere?
Yes, I volunteered at KPFK in Los Angeles and East Los Angeles Community College Library
Did you travel for interviews? If so, who paid?
Yes I traveled quite a bit and I was not paid.
Did you decline any offers?
No I did not
State of the Job Market
What’s the most ridiculous thing you’ve seen on a job announcement?
I don’t remember because it was so ridiculous I must have blocked it out of my most recent memory.
What was your favorite interview question? What was the worst?
Why should we hire you? Why did you leave your last position?
Any good horror stories for us?
Has job hunting been a positive or negative experience, for the most part?
It has been a very difficult experience for the most part that allowed me to learn a lot of life’s many challenges.
Would you change your answer to “what’s the secret to getting hired”?
What’s your ideal work situation? (hours, location, library type, etc.)
I did want to work in an academic library with more intellectually stimulated reference questions or in a historical archive, however without much experience coming out of library school I would say I am very satisfied with my current work situation.
Anything else you want to tell us?
Thank you for keeping this website up! It has been so helpful for me and I strongly believe your questions and my answers can definitely help the new library graduates as well