Each of our positions is a solo librarian

This anonymous respondent serves as a solo librarian in a multi-campus academic system and has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee.This librarian hires the following types of LIS professionals:

Solo librarians with a wide variety of duties – marketing, instruction, promotions, cataloging, reference, experience with Learning Management Systems and MS Office (in order to help students, staff, and faculty).

The library is in a suburban area in the Midwestern US.

Approximately how many people applied for the last librarian (or other professional level) job at your workplace?

√ 25-75

Approximately what percentage of those would you say were hirable?

√ 26-50 %

And how would you define “hirable”?

MLS, realistic salary expectations, relocation, socially and technologically adept and involved.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

I work with my manager on evaluating resumes and cover letters. We decide which librarians we would like to phone screen. If someone does well in the phone screen, we do a WebEx interview (if travel is difficult, which it usually is). HR does not see or weed any resumes. We do not have a rubric, but we work with leadership at the campuses with vacancies before making a final decision.

What is the most common reason for disqualifying an applicant without an interview?


Do you (or does your library) give candidates feedback about applications or interview performance?

√ Yes

What is the most important thing for a job hunter to do in order to improve his/her/their hirability?

Be enthusiastic and engaged about the profession. Stay current on new trends and developments in libraries, information, technology, and pedagogy.

I want to hire someone who is


How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 10-50

How many permanent, full time librarian (or other professional level) jobs has your workplace posted in the last year?

√ 3-4

How many permanent, full time para-professional (or other non-professional level) jobs has your workplace posted in the last year?

√ Other: 0

Can you tell us how the number of permanent, full-time librarian positions at your workplace has changed over the past decade?

√ There are more positions

Have any full-time librarian positions been replaced with part-time or hourly workers over the past decade?

√ No

Have any full-time librarian positions been replaced with para-professional workers over the past decade?

√ No

Does your workplace require experience for entry-level professional positions? If so, is it an official requirement or just what happens in practice?

We only hire MLS librarians. Each of our positions is a solo librarian.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

People will always need assistance navigating, accessing, evaluating, and communicating information.

Do you hire librarians? Take this survey: http://tinyurl.com/hiringlibjobmarketsurvey or take other Hiring Librarians surveys.

For some context, look at the most recent summary of responses.


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Filed under Academic, Midwestern US, State of the Job Market 2015, Suburban area

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