This anonymous interview is with a public librarian who has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee. This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:
This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a suburban area in the Western US.
Approximately how many people applied for the last librarian (or other professional level) job at your workplace?
√ 25 or fewer
Approximately what percentage of those would you say were hirable?
√ 25% or less
And how would you define “hirable”?
MLS degree and some public library experience
How are applications evaluated, and by whom?
Weeded by HR if don’t have an MLS.
What is the most common reason for disqualifying an applicant without an interview?
Not hirable as defined above
Do you (or does your library) give candidates feedback about applications or interview performance?
What is the most important thing for a job hunter to do in order to improve his/her/their hirability?
Do background research on the library and the city. Be personable. Stress previous experience orally at interview. Don’t rely on someone reading your resume.
I want to hire someone who is
How many staff members are at your library/organization?
How many permanent, full time librarian (or other professional level) jobs has your workplace posted in the last year?
√ Other: none
How many permanent, full time para-professional (or other non-professional level) jobs has your workplace posted in the last year?
√ Other: none
Can you tell us how the number of permanent, full-time librarian positions at your workplace has changed over the past decade?
√ There are fewer positions
Have any full-time librarian positions been replaced with part-time or hourly workers over the past decade?
Have any full-time librarian positions been replaced with para-professional workers over the past decade?
Does your workplace require experience for entry-level professional positions? If so, is it an official requirement or just what happens in practice?
Yes, official. But internships count as experience.
Is librarianship a dying profession?
Why or why not?
Our library is busier than ever and patrons rely on librarians to help with information overload, book recommendations, computer and e-book assistance.
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.