Don’t plan to only hire MLIS students for shelving positions and leave no intermediate positions for students

HM Queen Mother at the formal opening of the new library in the Lionel Robbins Building, 10th July 1979This 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 Less than six months. This person is looking in Library vendors/service providers, Public libraries and Special libraries, at the following levels: Entry level, Requiring at least two years of experience. This new grad/entry level applicant has internship/volunteering experience:

2.5 years experience in ILL in an academic library; 1.5 years in circulation in a public library

This job hunter is in an urban area, in the  Western US, and is willing to move anywhere.

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

1. A place to grow with my career.
2. A salary I can support myself on.
3. Location

Where do you look for open positions?

Library Jobline, INALJ, specific library websites (e.g. Denver Public Library)

Do you expect to see salary range listed in a job ad?

√ Other: Almost always yes, but I will still apply to a job if it’s not.

What’s your routine for preparing an application packet? How much time do you spend on it?

I have a standard cover letter that I adapt based on the job, occasionally re-writing it completely. I don’t spend more than an hour on most applications, mainly because many government and/or library application systems are shared and remember my information so I don’t have to reenter.

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?

√ 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 employers should do to get the best candidates to apply?

Be honest about the job opening and search for employers who fit the actual job. (Don’t plan to only hire MLIS students for shelving positions and leave no intermediate positions for students)

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

Be more timely, i.e. not take 3-4 weeks just to get back to me with a “no”

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

be awesome and honest and find the right fit.

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!

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Filed under Job hunter's survey, Public, Special, Urban area, Western US

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