Hiring Librarians primarily posts interviews generated through online surveys about LIS hiring or careers. Most responses are anonymous (and I do not have any way of contacting the respondent or even verifying the response). We also maintain a spreadsheet of questions that people were asked in LIS interviews (over 500 responses spanning the last decade) and do regular features that highlight different LIS hiring and careers related resources. Hiring Librarians initially ran from 2012-2016, then started up again in 2022. Check out the Archives page for a more comprehensive list of surveys, features, and services.

Hiring Librarians is run by me, Emily Weak, with lots of help from all kinds of people who hire LIS workers, as well as researchers, career experts, job hunters, authors, and other such folks. I do not make any money from this project at this point, and in fact pay for WordPress.com and the domain name out of pocket. For more information about how you can help (non-monetarily or monetarily), please visit the Participate page.

If you have questions, comments, concerns, thoughts, collaborative project ideas, free art, or some other need to speak with me, I’d love to hear from you. My email is hiring librarians AT gmail or if you prefer anonymity you can use the contact form.

I am also available for teaching, speaking, and writing engagements. If you’re interested in diving deeper into hiring, job hunting, or LIS careers in your class, conference, event, training day, or publication, I encourage you to email me.


I started this blog over a decade ago, when I was a newly-minted, frustrated, job-hunting librarian. I was applying to both public libraries, with their rituals of bureaucracy, and to academic libraries, with their rituals of, well, academia. I felt like there was this whole secret etiquette to hiring, about which I had no clue.

Inspired by Alison Green’s Ask A Manager blog, I wanted to create a venue which allowed people who make hiring decisions to explain their enigmatic thinking. I think we need more opportunities where people on both sides of the hiring process can communicate without fear or pressure.

To this end, I created a survey instrument which could be completed anonymously (or not), and solicited help from anyone who might hire a librarian, in all library types, as well as in non-library organizations that hire information professionals.

From the first posts in February of 2012, I grew the blog into five different surveys, features such as Researcher’s Corner and ALA Candidate Interviews, and services such as the interview questions repository and crowdsourced resume review. I worked with various amazing partners, authors, researchers, hiring managers, job hunters, and volunteers.

Then in 2016, with a solidly established full time public library career and some upheaval in my personal life, I stopped writing the blog. I wanted to spend more of my off work hours doing fun things like cooking and bike riding.

In March 2022, I started a pandemic-inspired career transition away from full time work and into consulting and contract work. With my more flexible schedule and interest in interacting with a wider realm of LIS folks, I restarted the blog and put out a NEW survey of folks who hire LIS workers. Since the reboot, I have started a feature highlighting resources for people who hire, posted the work of several researchers and authors, featured new websites, and put out an additional three surveys. There is a lot of content here!

Thank you so much for reading. I hope that you will also participate, by commenting, filling out a survey, sharing this work, providing financial support, or in whatever other way occurs to you.

Learn More

If you’d like to learn more about this project, check out:

Emily Weak – Founder of the Hiring Librarians blog. (2022). The Librarian Linkover podcast. (a 40 minute listen).

Hiring Librarians: An Inside Look at an HLS Collab. (2022). Hack Library School.

Guest Interview with Emily Weak, Founder of Hiring Librarians Blog. (2022). Library Returners.

Be You. Just the Best Possible Version of You. (2015). Keynote Speech (invited). Symposium on LIS Education, Virtual and Champaign, Illinois.

What Candidates Want: How to Practice Compassionate Hiring. (2014). Library Leadership & Management, 28(4).

Getting Your Foot in the Door: Moving From a World of Possibility to One of Opportunity. (2014, January). Letters to a Young Librarian.

Emily Weak of Hiring Librarians. (2013, October). INALJ

Hack Library School/Hiring Librarians Career Center Interview Series. (2013, January). Hack Library School.

Our Wonderful World: Making Connections Courtesy of Information and Communications. (2012, November 20). libfocus.


The header image I am using is of the American Library Association, New Monterey Hotel, Asbury Park, N.J., June 25, 1919, photographed by Cole & Co. The original is in the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA, available online at http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2007661672/

The images that accompany the most recent survey are photos of libraries and librarians that I found in various online archives. The caption generally includes a link to that organization or site.

I mages that accompany posts from the 2012-2016 era are often linked to the original site through the image. Most came from Flickr commons. Or you can always contact me to ask.

12 responses to “About

  1. Pingback: Hiring Librarians: A New Blog for Job Hunters « vreps

  2. Pamela Posz

    I’d love to find out if an info graphic would be an effective resume, or if it would end up in the trash?


  3. I would love to find that out too! Thanks for the suggestion, I’ll include that on an upcoming further questions post.


  4. abigailbaconblog

    Hi! I’d love some info for relocating librarians. Ex. how willing hiring librarians are to make skype/phone interview accommodations and if that will negatively impact the interviewee. Thanks for this resource, though it’s difficult to know what to do with the conflicting advice (objective statements are bad??) I’m finding it very helpful. Thanks!


    • Thanks Abigail, that’s a good suggestion of an area to explore.

      I find the conflicting interviews kind of comforting. They remind me that there are a lot of different workplaces and hiring librarians, and that there is no secret list of ten things to do in order to get hired. There’s a job out there that is a match for my individual quirks and interests.


      • I second your response, Emily! I think being able to see this variation in responses is one of the most helpful features of your blog! (Tanya)


    • I second this! I would also love to hear what we could put in a cover letter for jobs that would require a long distance relocation. This is an awesome blog! Thanks!


    • Two of my colleagues have had cursory Skype interviews. Both Denver Public Library and Los Angeles Public Library initially contacted them and had to set up these types of meetings. Only based on these two cases, I’d say hiring libraries do make Skype/phone interviews and, I have no answer on negative impact. 🙂


  5. geanieroake

    Great Blog. I will recommend it to a fellow blogger who’s trying to decide whether to her MLS.


  6. First I want to say how much I really like this website, particularly the Interview Questions Repository. It makes me feel much more prepared when going to library interviews when I know what kinds of questions I’m likely to be asked for various types of positions.

    With the interview questions database, I think it might be even more useful to take it one step further and people could indicate how they responded to the interview questions they were asked and whether or not if they were offered the position if they wanted too (strictly optional).

    As someone who has been on many librarian interviews with hardly any job offers, it would be useful to know how the candidates how get a job offer respond to the questions v.s. those who don’t.

    I know that there are numerous factors into making a hiring decision and the interview is just one of those. You can have a great interview and still not get the job or even a so-so interview and get the job if there isn’t much competition. Due to the competitive job market, the first scenario is probably more likely. Still it may be helpful to see what patterns and insights can be gleaned from successful interviewees responses.


  7. Pingback: Job Search, Part 3: Phone and Video Interviews – Nicole Helregel

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