All things should change. This is a deeply saddening question.

Man selling dill at vegetable market in Stockholm 1951 This anonymous interview is with an academic librarian who has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee a human resources professional. This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:


This librarian works at a library with 50-100 staff members in an urban areain the Northeastern 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”?

met the qualifications for the position.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

Some get weeded from HR before coming to chair of search committee, who then weeded further before sharing about 10 with the search committee.

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

Did not meet qualifications.

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

√ No

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

Have current skills, current experience.

I want to hire someone who is

Enthusiastic about academic librarianship.

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 50-100

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

√ 2

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

√ 1

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?

I’m not sure.  The position I hired for required experience.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

It’s a changing profession.  All things should change.  This is a deeply saddening question.

Do you hire librarians?  Take this survey: or take other Hiring Librarians surveys.

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

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Filed under 50-100 staff members, Academic, Northeastern US, State of the Job Market 2015, Urban area

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