Category Archives: Rural area

Still, a lot of what I learned in library school was not at all useful to my job.

Queipo Market in Little Havana - MiamiThis anonymous interview is with an employee from a public library who has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee. When asked, “Are you a librarian?” the respondent said “It’s complicated.” This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:

Reference, Management, Children’s, potentially Tech Services

This person works at a library with 0-10 staff members in a rural area in the Southern 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”?

Having minimum skills and experience to do the job.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

By me (Director) and supervisory staff.

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

Lack of education or experience

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

√ Other: only interns

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

Get relevant experience through volunteering or internships.

I want to hire someone who is

a team-player

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 0-10

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

√ 1

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

√ 2

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?

√ No

Have any full-time librarian positions been replaced with para-professional workers over the past decade?

√ Yes

Does your workplace require experience for entry-level professional positions? If so, is it an official requirement or just what happens in practice?

Depends

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

The field has changed, but the need for compassionate people to help find information and build communities has not.

Do you have any other comments, for job hunters or about the survey?

I could go on, but I think my situation is not typical. Still, a lot of what I learned in library school was not at all useful to my job. Job seekers need to be good at flexibility, have other talents besides library-specific ones, and not be wedded to whatever they thought they wanted to do if they want to remain relevant.

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.

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Filed under 0-10 staff members, Public, Rural area, Southern US, State of the Job Market 2015

set up a relationship with interns who might want to apply for jobs at your library

Digital ID 434250. Girls in classroom, Traveling Library at Public School Playground July 1910.. Hine, Lewis Wickes Photographer. 1910This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who is currently 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, Public libraries and Special libraries, at the following levels: Entry level, Requiring at least two years of experience, Supervisory, Senior Librarian. This new grad/entry level applicant has internship/volunteering experience:

I had a very positive internship experience at Johnson & Wales before I graduated. My supervisors allowed me to attend meetings with other libraries, and experiment with instructional tools and chat reference. Soon I will be volunteering at a local historical society for archiving and historical library experience.

This job hunter is in a rural area, in the  Northeastern US, and isHoping to stay in S. New England.

Where do you look for open positions?

OLIS Jobline, Massachusetts Board of Library Commisioners, Connecticut Library Jobs, HigherEd Jobs

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

√ Only for certain kinds of employers

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

I have a resume that is pre-designed, which I customize for certain positions, same with a cover letter. I usually spend no more than an hour preparing an application

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
√ 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

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

Communicate with your local library school to set up PFE programs and set up a relationship with interns who might want to apply for jobs at your library

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! http://tinyurl.com/hiringlibJOBHUNTERsurvey

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, Northeastern US, Public, Rural area, Special

Does not need library experience but customer service experience

Young boy tending freshly stocked fruit and vegetable stand at Center Market, 02181915This anonymous interview is with a public librarian who has been a member of a hiring or search committee. This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:

Catalogers, IT, Youth Services, YA, Adult

This librarian works at a library with 50-100 staff members in a rural area in the Midwestern 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”?

Had basic qualifications and experience

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

HR weeds out those applications which do not have the posted qualifications both educational and professional

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

Does not have basic educational requirements

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?

Complete the application in a professional manner, submit a good resume, be available for an interview

I want to hire someone who is

career-minded

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?

√ 3-4

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

√ 5-6

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?

√ Yes

Have any full-time librarian positions been replaced with para-professional workers over the past decade?

√ Yes

Does your workplace require experience for entry-level professional positions? If so, is it an official requirement or just what happens in practice?

Does not need library experience but customer service experience

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

Much of the community in our rural/small town area does not have internet access due to lack of funding or lack of internet providers reaching into their physical locations. Most do not have the education needed to research.

Do you have any other comments, for job hunters or about the survey?

Act professional, look professional and view the interview as the start of your career with the library. Be prepared with thoughtful answers to basic questions. If a library director or HR officer hears “I want to work at the library because it is so quiet and I love to read” that is a dead giveaway that you do not spend time in a public library!

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.

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Filed under 50-100 staff members, Midwestern US, Public, Rural area, State of the Job Market 2015

Please do not send a generic letter that fails to address the position or our library.

Fruit Venders, Indianapolis Market, aug., 1908. Wit., E N Clopper. Location Indianapolis, Indiana.This anonymous interview is with an academic librarian who has been a member of a hiring or search committee. This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:

Generalists – – we are small so even though we have a systems librarian, cataloging librarian, collections librarian – – etc – – we all teach and work at the reference desk.

This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a rural area in the Midwestern 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”?

ALA accredited master’s in library or information science, demonstrated ability or willingness to fulfill job duties, good oral and written skills, good references.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

Committee

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

Lacking ALA accredited master’s, stronger candidates in pool.

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?

Write a good cover letter that demonstrates their strengths and explain how or why those strengths would fit our particular position. Please do not send a generic letter that fails to address the position or our library.

I want to hire someone who is

enthusiastic

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 10-50

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

√ 1

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 the same number of 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?

No.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

The location and evaluation of information continues to be valuable to employers and many of our students can find basic information but still need to learn higher levels information-seeking such as evaluating information and locating scholarly information.

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.

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Filed under 0-10 staff members, Academic, Midwestern US, Rural area, State of the Job Market 2015

The applicant has to have confidence in themselves and that comes through in a phone interview.

Paramaribo market scene. Women and men. 1922.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:

County Librarians for 4 county libraries.

This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a rural area in the Southern 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”?

They have to fit the criteria for the position, education, MLS, experience in a public library, supervisory skills, and people skills.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

We are a rural Regional Library. We had a committee to hire for that particular county library that consisted of some of the local board members and the Director of the Regional Library. The consensus between all is important but the ultimate decision is made by the Regional Library Director. In this case, we all agreed on the hire.

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

Lack of education, lack of experience, false information on their resume, inability to produce documents that we requested for the application, and poorly written resumes.

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?

A well written cover letter, a complete application package, and the MLS. The applicant has to have confidence in themselves and that comes through in a phone interview. We have a phone interview first and if that goes well, an in-person interview.

I want to hire someone who is

knowledgeable

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 10-50

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

√ 1

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

√ Other: 0

Can you tell us how the number of permanent, full-time librarian positions at your workplace has changed over the past decade?

√ There are the same number of 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?

Yes, we require, at least, 3 years of experience in a public library. We could consider someone with less if they have other good qualifications.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

Librarianship is continually changing, but the need for information will always be there.

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.

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Filed under 10-50 staff members, Public, Rural area, Southern US, State of the Job Market 2015

It’s very important to be curious and have questions about all aspects of the library.

Push cart market -- New York (LOC)This anonymous interview is with an academic librarian who has been a member of a hiring or search committe. This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:

academic librarians

This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a rural area in the Northeastern US.

Approximately how many people applied for the last librarian (or other professional level) job at your workplace?

√ 25-75

Approximately what percentage of those would you say were hirable?

√ 25% or less

And how would you define “hirable”?

Having the experience and knowledge of the skills necessary for the job. Also, have required education.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

A search committee of library staff (4-6 people) is formed and they are tasked with evaluation. Depending on the job the committee might be made up of entirely one department or spread across the library.

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

Didn’t meet the requirements of the position.

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

√ Other: If requested, yes. If not, no.

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

Knowing about the hiring institution and doing research on the library. It’s very important to be curious and have questions about all aspects of the library.

I want to hire someone who is

dynamic

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 10-50

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?

√ 2

Can you tell us how the number of permanent, full-time librarian positions at your workplace has changed over the past decade?

√ There are the same number of 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

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

People will always need to consume information. Librarians will continue to aid in access, evaluation, and discovery of all types of information.

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.

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Filed under 10-50 staff members, Academic, Northeastern US, Rural area, State of the Job Market 2015

Many resumes are so general, they in no way reflect the applicant has the skills, experience or even interest in the actual position.

Queipo Market in Little Havana - MiamiThis 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:

Catalogers, children’s librarians, general reference/adult librarians, and director

This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a mix of an urban and rural 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”?

Met minimum qualifications of a Masters degree or experience.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

The hiring manager reviews and weeds out applications.

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

Not qualified.

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?

Read the job description and make sure the resume aligns with qualifications and job duties. Many resumes are so general, they in no way reflect the applicant has the skills, experience or even interest in the actual position.

I want to hire someone who is

Able

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 10-50

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

√ 1

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

√ 3-4

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?

In practice, if a minimum experience is required, only those people are interviewed.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

I believe specialization, and a growing dependency on technology, professional partnerships and societal workforce demands for better educated people is driving a greater need for professional librarians.

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.

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Filed under 10-50 staff members, Public, Rural area, Southern US, State of the Job Market 2015, Urban area

I find this an exciting time for the profession

Crockery and S. Murray, Grainger Market This anonymous interview is with an academic 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:

subject liaisons, specialists (research data management, images, undergraduate education)

This librarian works at a library with 100-200 staff members in a rural area in 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 minimum qualifications as stated in the job description

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

The search committee evaluated all applications. We developed our own rubric and scoring system. We select the top 3 or 4 candidates for on-campus interviews.

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

Doesn’t meet minimum qualifications as stated in the job description

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

√ Other: We haven’t been asked, but I think we would be willing to do so.

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

In both the cover letter and c.v. or resumé, emphasize skills and experience that are called for in the job description. Research the hiring institution! (2 things, sorry!)

I want to hire someone who is

farsighted

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 100-200

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

√ 3-4

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

√ 3-4

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?

√ Yes

Does your workplace require experience for entry-level professional positions? If so, is it an official requirement or just what happens in practice?

No, but it often raises the applicant’s standing

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

Changing, but not dying. I find this an exciting time for the profession. By redirecting our skills and adapting them to new environments, we will be more essential than ever. Of course we need to convince others of that (including some librarians).

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.

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Filed under 100-200 staff members, Academic, Northeastern US, Rural area, State of the Job Market 2015

serious applicants, trust worthy, independent, would represent the library well

City, Public Library, 1956 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:

Director
Cataloger

This librarian works at a library with 0-10 staff members in a rural area in the Midwestern US.

Approximately how many people applied for the last librarian (or other professional level) job at your workplace?

√ 25-75

Approximately what percentage of those would you say were hirable?

√ 25% or less

And how would you define “hirable”?

serious applicants, trust worthy, independent, would represent the library well

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

Director reads through resumes and applications, no HR

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

Prior job experience and length of holding positions and education, also the grammar and how well the application or the resume is done

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?

make the hiring process easy to understand and accessible for everyone, job description is clear and concise.

I want to hire someone who is

reliable

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 0-10

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

√ Other: 0

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

√ Other: 0

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?

√ Yes

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?

no, just what is required at the state level

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

Information is still needed to be acquired, libraries and librarians change how patrons get this information

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.

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Filed under 0-10 staff members, Midwestern US, Public, Rural area, State of the Job Market 2015

Intellectual curiosity, ability to manage change, and willingness to adapt are more important than an MLS.

Young boy tending freshly stocked fruit and vegetable stand at Center Market, 02181915This anonymous interview is with a public librarian who has been a hiring manage. This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:

Consultant Librarians, Assistant Director, Library and Automation Specialist

This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a rural area in 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”?

For the last position hired, possessing relevant management/supervisory experience, holding an MLS, able to write a coherent cover letter and resume.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

We are a small organization. The Executive Director (an MLS position) is hired by a committee of trustees. All other MLS positions are hired by the Executive Director.

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

Poorly written cover letter and/or resume.

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?

If you want an interview, write a coherent cover letter and resume.

I want to hire someone who is

nimble

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 10-50

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 fewer 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?

The State mandates that we have 4 MLS-holding librarians on staff.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

It’s changing, but not dying. Intellectual curiosity, ability to manage change, and willingness to adapt are more important than an MLS.

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.

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Filed under 10-50 staff members, Northeastern US, Public, Rural area, State of the Job Market 2015