Category Archives: School

Luck!

This 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, Library vendors/service providers, Public libraries, and School libraries, at the following levels: Entry level and Supervisory. This job hunter is in Hawaii and is willing to move anywhere.

What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?

Scope of responsibility, location, pay/benefits

Where do you look for open positions?

ALA, INALJ, Indeed, State government websites

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

√ Yes, and it’s a red flag when it’s not

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
√ To tell me if I have or have not been selected to move on to the interview stage

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
√ Meeting with HR to talk about benefits/salary
√ Being able to present

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

Luck!

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, City/town, Entry Level, Job hunter's survey, Public, School

Some questions are hard to answer truthfully, so for those I just do the best I can to be as truthful as possible

Botany Library, Field Columbian Museum, 1912This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who is not 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 More than 18 months. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Public libraries, and School libraries, at the following levels: Entry level, Requiring at least two years of experience. This job hunter is in a city/town, in the Southern US, and when asked if willing to move, say

Maybe, but not too far.

What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?

To be in a school, for that school to be a high school, and for it to be full-time.

Where do you look for open positions?

List-servs, school district websites, SEFLIN, university websites, Indeed.com, private school websites, etc.

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

√ Yes, and it’s a red flag when it’s not

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

Depends on the job. Usually I look at what’s required and then I look at what I already have in my file. I have a general template for most things that most jobs ask for. I then customize my materials to this position and then get it proofread before I read it over again and submit.

Have you ever stretched the truth, exaggerated, or lied on your resume, or at some other point during the hiring process?

√ Other: Some questions are hard to answer truthfully, so for those I just do the best I can to be as truthful as possible

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?

√ Email

Which events during the interview/visit are most important to your assessment of the position (i.e. deciding if you want the job)?

√ Meeting department members/potential co-workers
√ Meeting with HR to talk about benefits/salary

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

Well, an obvious answer would be to provide a high salary 🙂

But I’d say just be honest and fair and open. Not nepotism and nonsense.

What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?

Honesty, no BS-ing with people

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

Knowing somebody

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, City/town, Entry Level, Job hunter's survey, Public, School, Southern US

It seems as if the 30-and-under crowd are the ones getting hired.

Bryd, RichardThis 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 A year to 18 months. This person is looking in School libraries, and Special libraries, at the following levels: Entry level, Requiring at least two years of experience. This new grad/entry level applicant has internship/volunteering experience:

I’m currently doing an internship in a special library (which I had never considered before) that is giving me lots of hands-on experience with reference work, cataloging, circulation, and archiving. I have kind-of given up on public libraries after many unsuccessful interviews since I have no idea what they are looking for and believe that age is definitely a factor.

This job hunter is in a suburban area, in the Midwestern US, and is not willing to move.

What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?

Variety in work assignments. Opportunity to be creative. Congenial staff.

Where do you look for open positions?

RAILS, INALJ K12JobSpot, Indeed.com

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

√ Yes, and it’s a red flag when it’s not

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

Depends on whether it is a library assistant or librarian position. The cover letter takes the longest since the information changes depending on the job.

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
√ 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?

√ Phone for good news, email for bad news

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?

Not be so picky! With such a surplus of candidates, I often feel as if libraries are looking for “a candidate that doesn’t exist.” (This comment appeared on another blog..I can’t take credit for it, but it’s good.) Another issue: most library positions are only part-time and many people have other responsibilities, but libraries expect the candidate to be 100% available. Not being willing to work with a candidate’s other job eliminates many good people, I feel, and libraries may end up with employees who (for whatever reason) ARE 100% available…but they might not be the best option.

What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?

For part-time positions, please post the actual days and times of the job, not some generic statement like “may require evening and/or weekend hours.” That could be anything! I don’t know anyone who is totally available every single day of the week. People do have children, other jobs, classes that they are taking, etc.

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

Being young. I’m sorry, but there is definitely age discrimination out there and it seems as if the 30-and-under crowd are the ones getting hired.

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 Entry Level, Job hunter's survey, Midwestern US, School, Special, Suburban area

Let your personality shine.

Huntington Free Library and Reading Room, ca 1920-1929This 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 More than 18 months. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Archives, Public libraries, School libraries, and Special libraries, at the following levels: Entry level. This job hunter is in a city/town, in the Western US, other: and is willing not to move.

What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?

Friendly and supportive staff, training opportunities, and room for growth

Where do you look for open positions?

Academic, library district, city and county websites

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

√ Other: Only for certain kinds of employers

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

I update my cover letter and resume to highlight my qualifications; I try to have all my information prepared in a day or two. Some electronic applications do not allow you to stop and save your information, so you have to be prepared to finish it once you’ve started.

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?

√ Once the position has been filled, even if it’s not me

How do you prefer to communicate with potential employers?

√ Phone

Which events during the interview/visit are most important to your assessment of the position (i.e. deciding if you want the job)?

√ Meeting department members/potential co-workers

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

Your resume tells the employer what they need to know about you professionally; cover letters, required essays, and interviews are opportunities to show them who you are personally and what they can expect in a peer. Let your personality shine.

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, Archives, City/town, Entry Level, Job hunter's survey, Public, School, Special, Western US

I took some bad advice once and left “volunteer” off my volunteer jobs

Huntington Free Library and Reading Room, ca 1920-1929This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who has not been hired within the last two months, and has been looking for a new position for Less than six months. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Public libraries, School libraries, Special libraries, IT and various information management or data management jobs at the following levels: Entry level, Requiring at least two years of experience. This job hunter is in a city/town, in the  Midwestern US, and is not willing to move.

What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?

1. A good work environment – some offices are so awful they lower my mood when I walk in the door. Much of this is attitude, not decor–but I do have to say that if all the chairs are vinyl secretary chairs from the 70s (something I’ve seen as recently as last week, in a tech services department) I’m pretty sure I’ll be spending a lot of time thinking more about my aching back than about the job.
2. Interesting work
3. A sense that the job matters, and doesn’t exist solely to keep the library from losing a position

Where do you look for open positions?

Everywhere! But these days, mostly local sources (state library jobline, individual library/university websites, newspaper)

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?

I spend a LOT of time preparing applications. I customize my resume and write a new cover letter (no boilerplate, although I do use a standard outline) for every job I apply for. Sometimes, if I’ve only got one or two applications out, I’ll change my online portfolio to be more specific to them, but that can backfire, so I’m cautious about it.

Have you ever stretched the truth, exaggerated, or lied on your resume, or at some other point during the hiring process?

√ Other: I took some bad advice once and left “volunteer” off my volunteer jobs. Since being called on it in a job interview, I now make sure all my volunteer jobs are clearly indicated as such.

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?

√ Phone for good news, email for bad news

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
√ Meeting with HR to talk about benefits/salary
√ Other:  Being able to ask questions and get honest answers

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

Be very clear about what they’re looking for in a candidate. I think they should also advertise salaries, but I don’t hold out a lot of hope for that happening.

I’ve seen a couple of job ads that made me want to apply immediately, even though neither was appropriate for me–both of them described the kind of person they wanted in the job more than the job itself.

For example, here’s a requested qualification from one of my all-time favorite ads (I kept it in Evernote, just because I liked it so much): “An instinctive predisposition to create and maintain order by giving sustained attention to detail.” (From University of the Ozarks, a couple of years ago) I want to meet the person who wrote that job ad. If I lived in Arkansas or wanted to relocate there, I would definitely have applied.

What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?

Quit using services like Taleo or that awful thing that EVERY university seems to use these days. I know they help HR with statistics and such, but they are just horrible for applicants. For the money they spend every year on systems that mine the data we spend two hours inputting, they could hire two people to actually LOOK at our resumes and cover letters.

I know libraries usually have no control over this, but I feel strongly that most of these systems are making the job search process more painful for everyone, and probably a lot less effective (by weeding out people who would be a good fit, but accidentally filled out the forms wrong).

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

Be honest. In my younger days, I would tell interviewers what I thought they wanted to hear, even if I wasn’t that interested in the job. Apparently I was really good at that, and ended up in a few jobs that really were not right for me. I know that the job environment has changed; jobs are fewer and more competitive, and if you need a job, you should do whatever’s necessary to get one. But if you’re unhappy with your current job and looking for a new one, be totally honest about your skills, your goals, and your philosophy. Otherwise, you’re likely to end up in a job you’re even MORE unhappy with.

Do you have any comments, or are there any other questions you think we should add to this survey?

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!

Leave a comment

Filed under Academic, City/town, Job hunter's survey, Midwestern US, Public, School, Special

I was interviewed by 10 people for 1 hours and during the interview some people left the room one by one… it was weird

Brian Hunter, 1984, Asst Librarian, Slavonic Collections, London School of EconomicsThis anonymous interview is with a job hunter who has not been hired within the last two months, and has been looking for a new position for Less than six months. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Archives, and School libraries, at the following levels: Entry level, Requiring at least two years of experience, Supervisory. This new grad/entry level applicant has internship/volunteering experience at a court law library. This job hunter is in a city/town, in the  Western US, and is not willing to move.

What are the top three things you’re looking for in a job?

creativity freedom
organized company
supportive team members

Where do you look for open positions?

cable network websites
school websites

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

√ Other:  Yes, It helps me decide if I want to apply or not

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

sometimes a day or more. I update my resume for that particular job, change certain statements on a cover letter, and use that info to help complete the application.

Have you ever stretched the truth, exaggerated, or lied on your resume, or at some other point during the hiring process?

√ Yes

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?

√ Phone

Which events during the interview/visit are most important to your assessment of the position (i.e. deciding if you want the job)?

√ Meeting department members/potential co-workers
√ Meeting with HR to talk about benefits/salary

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

Clearly describe what the tasks for that position entail, and what accomplishments they want from the new team member.

What should employers do to make the hiring process less painful?

Not have 6-10 people in the interview. I was so nervous when I was interviewed by 10 people for 1 hours and during the interview some people left the room one by one… it was weird.

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

smiles, and prepare to answer all questions asked.

Do you have any comments, or are there any other questions you think we should add to this survey?

maybe add a section where you ask “what’s the best advise that has been given to you”.

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!

Leave a comment

Filed under Academic, Archives, City/town, Entry Level, Job hunter's survey, School, Western US

Stay tuned in to what is going on in the profession

Rural school children, San Augustine County, Texas (LOC)This anonymous interview is with a school 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:

Elementary-High school

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

Do library schools teach candidates the job skills you are looking for in potential hires?

√ Yes

Should library students focus on learning theory or gaining practical skills? (Where 1 means Theory, 5 means practice, and 3 means both equally)

4

What coursework do you think all (or most) MLS/MLIS holders should take, regardless of focus?

√ Cataloging
√ Grant Writing
√ Collection Management
√ Programming (Events)
√ Research Methods
√ Outreach
√ Marketing

When deciding who to hire out of a pool of candidates, do you value skills gained through coursework and skills gained through practice differently?

√ No preference–as long as they have the skill, I don’t care how they got it

Which skills (or types of skills) do you expect a new hire to learn on the job (as opposed to at library school)?

Cataloging, lesson planning, adaptation

Which of the following experiences should library students have upon graduating?

√ Internship or practicum

Which library schools give candidates an edge (you prefer candidates from these schools)?

University of North Texas, Texas Women’s University

What advice do you have for students who want to make the most of their time in library school?

Get internships with Professors, stay tuned in to what is going on in the profession

This survey was coauthored by Brianna Marshallfrom Hack Library School. Interested in progressive blogging, by, for, and about library students? Check it out!

Special Note: From December 6, 2013 to October 24, 2014, the ALA will accept comments on the Draft revised Standards for Accreditation of Master’s Programs in Library and Information Studies. More information about the process of changing these standards is here. If you have opinions about what people should be learning in library school, here’s a way that you can influence change.

Do you hire librarians? Tell us, “What Should Potential Hires Learn in Library School?”: http://tinyurl.com/hiringlibschoolsurvey

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Filed under 10-50 staff members, School, Southern US, Suburban area, What Should Potential Hires Learn in Library School