Tag Archives: Job Listings

Job Hunter’s Web Guide: Archives Gig

This week we’re showcasing a resource for the archivists out there.  I don’t know much about archives and archivists, so I’m glad to be able to learn more with Meredith Lowe, and her awesome resource: Archives Gig.

Archives Gig

What is it?  Please give us your elevator speech!

I curate postings of careers, jobs, and internships in the world of archives & records management, and post them to Archives Gig.

When was it started?  Why was it started?

Archives Gig was created on February 5, 2010.  As part of my job, I was contributing to the student job listserv at the University of Wisconsin – Madison SLIS.  I thought that I could benefit a broader group of people by making a public website, so that’s what drove the creation of the site.  I really enjoy looking at all of the opportunities out there, too, so running AG is a fun hobby.

Who runs it?

Just me!  I have a MA in Library and Information Studies, with a concentration in archives, from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.  My training largely informs my decisions about which jobs I post.  I currently work in Continuing Education Services at UW-Madison SLIS, so I coordinate continuing education and training for librarians and information professionals.  Check out our offerings at http://www.slis.wisc.edu/continueed.htm.

Are you a “career expert”? What are your qualifications?

I’m not a “career expert.”  I just post jobs that fall within the purview of the site.

Who is your target audience?

Archivists, records managers, and students.  I post jobs at all levels, from internships to directors.  Anyone who is interested in the current archives/RM career landscape would certainly find a lot of information here.

What’s the best way to use your site?  Should users consult it daily?  Or as needed? Should they already know what they need help with, or can they just noodle around?

I generally post daily on weekdays, and I exclusively post job announcements.  It’s in a blog format, so the most recent post goes up top. If you’re actively job hunting, check in at least weekly (or set yourself up to receive Twitter or Facebook alerts).  If you’re just casually interested in what’s out there right now, consult AG at your leisure.

Each job posting gets tagged with keywords that you can use to narrow your search. If you look at the main page (http://archivesgig.livejournal.com), the tags are listed down the left side of the screen.  The quick and dirty trick to searching: I always tag the state/geographical region of every job’s location, whether it’s permanent or temporary, and what kind of institution it’s in. For example, if I tag something as “status: internship”, and if you click that tag in the list, every entry that received that tag will come up (the most recent will be at the top of the page). If you’re looking for all jobs in a certain state (let’s say Iowa), go to the tag list on the left side of the page and look for “State: Iowa.” One caveat: the “skills” tags are NOT comprehensive. I often get a little more detailed with the tags, and specify particular skill sets that a job demands – but that’s basically if I have time to do so!

Does your site provide:

√  Job Listings

Should readers also look for you on social media? Or is your content available in other formats?

√  Twitter: @archivesgig
√  Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/archivesgig
√  Other:  RSS feed: http://archivesgig.livejournal.com/data/rss

Do you charge for anything on your site?

Free! It’s completely free for anyone to search.  If someone wants me to post a job, that’s also free.

Can you share any stories about job hunters that found positions after using your site?

I’m always thrilled to hear from someone who found their job through Archives Gig.  It’s my mission to make job hunting in this tight market just a little easier.  I have heard from several archivists who found their jobs through AG, which makes my day every time.

meredith loweAnything else you’d like to share with my readers about your site in particular, or about library hiring/job hunting in general?

This is especially directed toward the newly graduated job seekers: Be Flexible.  If you can’t find your dream job in your ideal location, try and look for other positions (or other places) that you’re qualified to do, and that will give you some professional experience.  You’ll certainly learn something new, and you may find a job in a different area of the profession is a great fit.

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Job Hunter’s Web Guide: METRO Job Bank/Career Resources

This week I’m talking with Ellen Mehling, who is not only the Director at the Westchester Graduate Program (Palmer School of Library and Information Science) but is also the manager of the Job Bank, and a career development consultant for the Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO).  If you subscribe to NEWLIB-L, or read INALJ articles, or just generally keep your eyes open for library career advice, you’ve probably read something she’s written, or seen links that she’s shared.  She was kind enough to answer my questions about METRO’s Job Bank and Career Resources sites.

METRO Career Resources and Job Bank

What is your website all about? Please give us your elevator speech!

METRO’s JobBank/Career Resources site  provides job postings, and job search and career information for job seekers and employers. In addition to the Job Bank, we’re also regularly publishing articles with tips, information about local professional organizations, and other useful information for new professionals and those in career transition.

When was it started? Why was it started?

The Job Bank was started 10 years ago as the “Job Magnet”, as a way to connect employers and job seekers in the field of library and information science, in the New York area.

Who runs it?

The Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO), a non-profit organization working to develop and maintain essential library services throughout New York City and Westchester County (those who use the Job Bank and Career Resources include many outside of those areas, though).

Are you a “career expert”? What are your qualifications?

I’ve been an advisor on job hunting and career development for various groups including librarians/information professionals and library school students, for about eight years. I started in a former job, advising members of the general public and special populations who were seeking employment, and before long was being asked to teach workshops on the job search to other library professionals. I’ve trained other librarians on assisting job hunting patrons, and have taught classes/workshops, moderated or spoken on panel discussions and conducted mock interviews and more, at METRO and other venues. I write regularly on job hunting/career topics for various sites, including METRO’s. I’ve served on hiring committees and have been a successful applicant myself in recent years, so I’ve seen and experienced first-hand what works and what doesn’t. I also work for LIU as Director of the Westchester Program and Director of Internships for the Palmer School of Library and Information Science, where I advise all students and alumni on the job search and career development and write a career Q&A for the blog.

Who is your target audience?

Information professionals of all stripes and library school/iSchool students in the greater NYC area.

What’s the best way to use your site? Should users consult it daily? Or as needed? Should they already know what they need help with, or can they just noodle around?

Job seekers can read the postings and post their own resumes; employers can post positions and see the resumes. Anyone can read the articles and the lists of resources. There is also an RSS feed (http://metro.org/jobs/feed) for the positions that appear on the Job Bank.

Does your site provide:

√  Job Listings     √ Articles/literature     √ Links

√  Advice on:

√ Cover Letters    √ Resumes   √ Interviewing    √ Networking
√ Other: Advice for students and new professionals

Should readers also look for you on social media? Or is your content available in other formats?

√ Twitter: @tweetMETRO
√ LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/groups/METRO-librarians-archivists-information-professionals-1131967/about
√  Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/METRO-Metropolitan-New-York-Library-Council/20722206359
√ Newsletter: The METRO Monthly and ProfDev news are each delivered once a month. Anyone can subscribe via the homepage 
√ Other: Networking opportunities  including Special Interest Groups (SIGs). The general listserv (METRO-l) is open to all; many positions are posted on the listserv in addition to the ones posted on the Job Bank by employers. More ways to connect: http://metro.org/connect/.

Metro job bank

Do you charge for anything on your site?

There is no fee to access the job postings, read the articles/resource lists, or join the listserv.

Anything else you’d like to share with my readers about your site in particular, or about library hiring/job hunting in general?

The job market is improving, but it is still tight. While the ways in which people find job openings, apply for jobs, and connect have changed, the classic strategies for finding a job are still the most effective: get the skills and experience that employers want, cultivate and guard your reputation as a positive, effective professional, and network, network, network.

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Researcher’s Corner: Entry Level Job Opportunities for Academic Librarians

I’m very happy to be able to share Eamon Tewell’s research with you here, not only because I think the subject matter is very relevant for many of you readers, but because he did such a wonderful job of writing this informal summary. If you’d like to read a more formal, thorough account, follow the link to Project Muse, or search for the article cited below:

Tewell, E. (2012). Employment opportunities for new academic librarians: Assessing the availability of entry level jobs. portal: Libraries and the Academy, 12(4), 407-423.

Rather than being disheartened by the rather bleak results, I hope that this research will spur us to continue discussing how we can make more job opportunities for librarians, entry level and otherwise.  Please feel free to add your comments below.


Introduction

As a recent graduate seeking a professional position in an academic library, I spent most of a year looking for a job suitable for someone without a great deal of experience. Anecdotally, it seemed that many postings were for administrative positions that required years of post-MLS experience. Where were the entry level academic library jobs? Further, I wondered, what types of academic settings and which departments offered the most opportunities? These are two questions I attempted to answer by conducting research, of which the full version can be found at Project Muse (institutional subscription required). One goal of the article was to shed light on the reality of the job market for recent graduates–a market which new librarians know to be extremely challenging but for which little data exists to back up this assertion.

Methods

To examine the state of the academic library job market, I went directly to the job listings. Many articles that study job postings fail to take into account the many positions that are now advertised almost exclusively online in a wide variety of places. With this in mind, I used 22 different sources representing national, regional, and local listings to collect a total of 1385 job advertisements over a one year period from 2010-2011. These sources included national job aggregators (such as I Need A Library Job), regional listings (like ACRL/New York’s Job Listings), and human resources departments for individual institutions to make sure the maximum number of postings were found. A listing of the sources used to find job advertisements is included in the full article.

Defining which positions were and were not entry level was key. Using previous articles on similar topics as a basis, I reached the criteria that jobs were to be considered entry level if they required:

1. An ALA-accredited Masters of Library Science degree or its equivalent;

2. One or fewer years of experience;

3. No experience or duties that entry level librarians typically do not possess (supervising other professionals, administrative experience, etc.)

For each advertisement found, the level of position (entry level, non-entry level due to experience requirements, non-entry level due to job duties, and administrative), institution type (university, college, community college, or other), location (state and region), department, and job type were all noted.

Findings

Of the many findings, here are two that I found to be most interesting and relevant to job seekers:

  • Nearly three-quarters of the 1385 positions were non-entry level owing to either experience or duty requirements, confirming what those in the academic library job market already know: finding an entry level job to even apply for can be a challenge.
  • Twenty percent of positions were entry level, and public services (such as reference or instruction) accounted for sixty percent of entry level positions, a significant majority. Administrative and part time/temporary jobs accounted for the remainder of the jobs.

Given the relatively small number of jobs that recent graduates can viably apply for, I looked at what types of institutions and locations are more likely to offer positions.

  • Applicants for entry level jobs will have better chances finding a position in a university, where nearly seventy percent of all postings were found.
  • The distribution of advertisements among the four major U.S. regions was relatively even, though slightly more positions were based in the South and Northeast. The number of jobs in each state corresponded roughly to the state’s population, with New York and California offering the highest number of opportunities.
  • Certain specialties are more likely to offer positions, particularly Administration and Public Services. In terms of entry level work, the data suggested that recent graduates have the most prospects in Public Services and Electronic Services.

To begin to address the major question of whether the candidates being hired for entry level jobs actually had experience that matched those requirements, I emailed the Human Resources departments at 47 institutions to determine the experience backgrounds of successful hires. Through their responses I found that a large majority of the candidates hired for entry level positions had two years or more of professional experience, demonstrating the impact of potentially unexpected competition on the outcome of entry level job searches.

Conclusion

In the current academic library market, entry level positions are greatly outnumbered by jobs requiring years of experience and duties beyond the reach of new librarians. Seeking work in particular settings or within certain specializations is one way to increase your chances of landing your first job, but that may not be enough. Recent graduates lacking practical experience may find securing professional employment to be a huge challenge, which is why I and many others cannot overemphasize the importance of securing internships or pre-professional work prior to graduating with your MLS. Despite these difficulties, it is my hope that with more facts regarding the realities of the job market, everyone involved in or thinking about joining the library field can make more informed decisions regarding their career paths and goals.


Eamon Tewell is Reference Librarian at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, NY, where he provides research, instruction, and outreach services. He earned his MLIS from Drexel University in 2008 and his BA from the University of Colorado at Denver. Eamon has published and presented on the topics of emerging technologies and popular media. He tweets at @eamontewell and can also be reached via eamontewell.comAcademia.edu, orLinkedIn.

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Filed under Academic, Guest Posts, library research, Researcher's Corner