They need to COMMUNICATE.

Folger Shakespeare Library, ca. 1932-1950, from the collection of Cornell University This 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 More than 18 months. This person is looking in Academic libraries and Special libraries, at the following levels: Requiring at least two years of experience. This new grad/entry level applicant has internship/volunteering experience:

I volunteered for a library association to work on professional development opportunities for a variety of librarians.

This job hunter is in a city/town, in the  Southern US.

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

Growth and flexibility to make the job “mine”. I don’t want to lose my interests as we all know there are aspects to jobs that might not always engage people.

The final thing that I look for in a job is a great environment to work in. I just recently left the BEST group of people to take a job in a library. It was the hardest decision I have made in my career.

Where do you look for open positions?

Indeed, ALA, actual academic institutions (most do not post to listserv), alumn network at MLIS school, higheredjobs, chronicle.

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

√ Other: depends on the institution

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

 DAYS..After finding the job I want to apply for, I pick it apart. I identify the skills that the job is looking for and then go back to my resume to see what skills that I have on there. I take the time to make sure that the skills are the “first” under the title of each job where the skills are found. Then I write the cover letter. I let it all sit for a few days… then I go back and re-read. I then share with a peer to see what their thoughts are. I make revisions then submit. The whole process takes about a week to get all of the material ready for one job.

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
√ Meeting with HR to talk about benefits/salary
√ Being able to present
√ Other: Meet with the Colleges that the position would be supporting.

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

I am a firm believer in sharing the “more” of the position. I am an academic librarian. I love to research and consult but I like teaching. I would have loved to know in the job posting about collaboration opportunities to work with the actual school in different ways.

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

They need to COMMUNICATE. I understand that academic libraries take a while to hire (4-6 months) but that is a long road. They should at least reach out and let people know that the process is still moving forward.

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

I think that if you are a someone who hires, you can look past experience and really look at the person. You cannot train motivation or enthusiasm for the job. As a potential employee, be honest and if you are truly into this job, then research the position and have ideas that you would implement in the position…

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, Southern US, Special

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