Most of us have big chunks of student debt

Librarians, State Library of New South Wales, 1952 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 libraries at the following levels: Entry level, Requiring at least two years of experience. This new grad/entry level applicant has internship/volunteering experience:

Interned at one library in my field (voluntary), graduate teaching assistantship (related to my field)

This job hunter is in an urban area, in the  Northeastern US and is trying to relocate to a specific region.

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

Location, competitive salary, collaborative environment

Where do you look for open positions?

INALJ, individual library websites, regional boards, MLA

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

√ Only for certain kinds of employers

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

I tweak my CV, and write a new cover letter. Without taking into consideration having to re-type all this information into an online form- roughly 2 hours? Then I send it to someone to proofread, and typically submit it within a few days.

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

√ Other: I’ve been “vague”

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
√ 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)?

√ Meeting department members/potential co-workers
√ Meeting with HR to talk about benefits/salary
√ Being able to present

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

Post the job position to as many places as possible; know the cost of living in your area, and offer a competitive salary. Most of us have big chunks of student debt- we need to be able to live somewhere, buy groceries, and pay back our loans (especially if we had a volunteer internship throughout grad school!).

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

Communicate throughout the process. I appreciate that you can’t take down the job ad until someone has formally accepted the position, but it would be great to know if you’re already interviewing people and won’t be looking at my application unless your first round of interviews doesn’t go well.

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

In order to get an interview- knowing people. In order to get hired- fitting in with the library personality-wise

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 Academic, Job hunter's survey, Northeastern US, Urban area

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