This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who is currently not 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 six months to a year. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Archives, Public libraries, and Special libraries, at the entry levels. This new grad/entry level applicant has the following internship/volunteering experience:
I worked at a library part time while in graduate school and have interned at two archives. Prior to entering school I volunteered for a year at a local historical society.
This job hunter is in an urban area in the Northeastern US and is willing to move anywhere.
What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?
Professional development opportunities
good salary and benefits
Challenging work environment
Where do you look for open positions?
Archives Gig, Indeed.com, ALA Joblist, METRO NY Roundtable
Do you expect to see salary range listed in a job ad?
√ No (even if I might think it *should* be)
What’s your routine for preparing an application packet? How much time do you spend on it?
After reading the job announcement and deciding if I am qualified I write a cover letter. This usually takes about an hour. Then I wait a bit and come back to re-read the cover letter. After checking my resume I then submit the required application materials including filling out an online profile if needed.
Have you ever stretched the truth, exaggerated, or lied on your resume, or at some other point during the hiring process?
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?
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
What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?
The best area that can be improved is the online application that must be filled out in order to apply to many jobs. Often this includes information on work experience and education. Since it is duplicated in the resume that information is redundant. The application process would be much less painful if it did not have to be filled out.
What do you think is the secret to getting hired?
Having the necessary skills and being able to sell them.
This survey was co-authored by Naomi House from I Need A Library Job – Do you need one? Check it out!