Tag Archives: libraries

We have no entry-level professional positions.

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 hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee. This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:

Technical services, public services, serials

This librarian works at a library with 0-10 staff members in a suburban 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”?

Meeting the criteria specified in the position description.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

All are forwarded directly to me.

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

Not meeting the criteria for the position.

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

√ Yes

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

Don’t apply for positions for which they are not qualified.

I want to hire someone who is

compatible

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?

√ 2

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?

We have no entry-level professional positions.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

It’s changing, not dying.

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, State of the Job Market 2015, Suburban area

I don’t care about your GPA. I do like to see your personality, though

Market day, Killarney 2This 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:

adult and children’s librarians

This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a suburban 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?

√ 26-50 %

And how would you define “hirable”?

Met the basic qualifications, including experience.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

All applications are vetted by the Library Director (me) as well as at least one other staff member (librarian or circulation supervisor). We each sort them and weed out those we don’t feel meet the basic requirements. Then we look for matching or relevant experience or skills. Then each member of the hiring committee (usually three people – Director, librarian, circ supervisor) sorts the apps again and selects those they feel they would be interested in interviewing. We select 5-10 strong candidates and invite them for interviews.

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

They don’t meet the basic requirements.

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

√ Other: If they ask, I will give them feedback about the application, but not the interview.

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

Follow the directions in the application process! Highlight your most relevant experience and skills. Eliminate dead wood in your application. You’re not applying for college. I don’t care about your GPA. I do like to see your personality, though, so include interesting skills or hobbies somewhere. Write an appealing cover letter that really shows who YOU are. Match your application and resume to our job description. Don’t just say “did collection development” – add specifics: what was your budget? Did you do the ordering? The cataloging? The weeding? What areas? Include any special projects you initiated and/or completed and/or assisted with.

I want to hire someone who is

collegial.

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?

√ Other: none

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 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?

We do not require library experience for entry-level professional positions, although fieldwork or internships are a plus.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ Other: Not dying, but definitely changing!

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, Midwestern US, Public, State of the Job Market 2015, Suburban area

even the profession itself has to see itself in a new light

Market day, KillarneyThis 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:

electronic resource librarians
catalogers
reference librarians with subject specialties

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

Had the required minimum qualifications.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

By committee. Each member evaluates candidates on set minimum criteria before they move on for further consideration.

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

Doesn’t have the minimum credentials — academic degree(s)

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

√ Other: Not on a formal basis. There may have been times in the past, especially if a candidate initiated the conversation.

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

Apply to appropriate positions that you at least have the minimum qualifications.

I want to hire someone who is

qualified

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?

√ 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 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?

Typically yes—experience of some sort. It doesn’t have to be directly related to the job or for great lengths of time.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

With the explosion of information in the world there is great demand for professionals who can search, organize, and manage it…this is exactly what a librarian does…I think the general public and employers will eventually come to that realization…even the profession itself has to see itself in a new light. As older library professionals retire the newer, digital savvy group coming up through the ranks should be able to manage this change in perception a bit better.

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, State of the Job Market 2015, Suburban area

match qualifications and address them if they don’t have the experience in terms of what they will do to fill the gap

Market scene. Women and men. 1922 2This anonymous interview is with an academic librarian who has been a hiring manager, a member of a hiring or search committee, and a human resources professional. This person hires the following types of LIS professionals:

liaisons
tech services
eResources

This librarian works at a library with 50-100 staff members in an urban area in the Southern US.

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

√ 75-100

Approximately what percentage of those would you say were hirable?

√ 25% or less

And how would you define “hirable”?

qualifications matched what was in the posting

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

search committee forms a matrix based on qualifications listed in the posting

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

does not meet one of the require qualifications

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?

match qualifications and address them if they don’t have the experience in terms of what they will do to fill the gap

be focused and serious

investigate the organization and share insights

be personable but sincere

I want to hire someone who is

personable

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?

√ 2

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 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?

no professional experience required for residency position, others will have some type of specialty request

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

it will be modified from its current state but not eliminated

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, Academic, Southern US, State of the Job Market 2015, Urban area

New graduates often overreach when applying for jobs

Paramaribo market scene. Women and men. 1922.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:

Access Services.

This librarian works at a library with 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”?

A hirable candidate would possess all of the required qualifications in the job description and many of the preferred. S/he would possess the personal characteristics that would allow him/her to work well among his/her colleagues.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

The search committee is charged before the position is announced. They review candidates’ documentation.

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

Does not meet minimum requirements. Probably did not even read or failed to understand the job description.

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?

Address all of the required qualifications in your cover letter. Make sure the evidence is presented in the CV.

I want to hire someone who is

Personable.

How many staff members are at your library/organization?

√ 200+

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

√ 7 or more

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

√ 7 or more

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?

Experience makes you a more desirable candidate but if experience is not a requirement of the position those without experience will be considered as well.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

The profession is not dying, it is changing. The shift to digital has changed jobs but new jobs are emerging.

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

Thoroughly read the job description and research the organization. Understand the goals and mission of the organization to which you are applying. New graduates often overreach when applying for jobs; for instance applying for high level administrative jobs without any work experience.

Be willing to relocate.

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 200+ staff members, Academic, Northeastern US, Rural area, State of the Job Market 2015

she is so intelligent and socially savvy, but just doesn’t have a resume that supports her abilities.

Push cart market -- New York (LOC)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:

Currently trying to get positions approved for subject liaisons, technology librarians, paraprofessionals in cataloging and metadata management.

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

Shows promise in fulfilling the job duties of the position s/he is applying for, shows evidence of commitment to the profession, i.e. involvement in associations, publishing, or other activities that go beyond just work experience.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

Sometimes HR will weed out any that don’t fulfill the educational requirements, otherwise we get most applications. We have rubrics and applications are reviewed by all members of a committee (normally with three members)

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

Another candidate had more evidence of experience and/or professional development involvement

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 achievement based resumes, be smart about applying specifically to the job that is advertised (we can tell when it’s a standard resume and it pushes the candidate further down the list).

I want to hire someone who is

energetic

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?

√ Other: only posted part time

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 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?

We generally put specific experience requirements under “preferred” qualifications, especially in the case of an entry-level professional position.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ Other: it depends

Why or why not?

If we continue to recruit for old positions like reference and instruction and don’t rethink what we’re doing as a profession, yes, it’s dying. Things like search engine optimization, taxonomy, scholarly communication, library as the publisher, are potential avenues to rethinking what the library does. A lot of institutions aren’t innovating fast enough strategically and technologically, so it is easy to make the library a target for budget cuts.

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

I have a part-time librarian who works for me and she is so intelligent and socially savvy, but just doesn’t have a resume that supports her abilities. It’s SO important to have a strong resume that is written for the position – it’s even more important to get involved in professional development opportunities if you are interested in academic librarianship. I ran an interest group and was in the process of publishing while trying to get my first professional job right out of grad school and I honestly believe that these experiences got me a lot more interviews and made me much more marketable than just work experience alone.

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, Southern US, State of the Job Market 2015, Suburban area

The young professionals are energetic, enthusiastic and have great skills

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:

Technology, childrens, Senior librarians

This librarian works at a library with 50-100 staff members in a urban area in the Western US.

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

√ more than 100, but less than 200

Approximately what percentage of those would you say were hirable?

√ 26-50 %

And how would you define “hirable”?

Having the right attitude and the solid foundation skills needed to be successful in a public library.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

Our Human Resources Department does the initial screening for minimum qualifications. Then a committee of Professional managers at the Library work on the second review.

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

Lack of degree or No experience directly related to the position being advertised

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 that your application highlights how you match what is needed.

I want to hire someone who is

creative

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?

√ 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?

√ 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?

yes, we do. It is an official requirement for the professional positions.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

The young professionals are energetic, enthusiastic and have great skills – they are good at connecting with people and the communities they serve. They will ensure that libraries continue to be engaged in their community and making a difference.

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, Public, State of the Job Market 2015, Urban area, Western US

Be prepared to give a good answer without too much hesitance.

Vegetable and flower seller and stall, Pike Place Market, Seattle, WashingtonThis 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

This librarian works at a library with 100-200 staff members in a suburban 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?

√ Other: 3

And how would you define “hirable”?

The right set of skills, experience, aptitude and attitude.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

HR does not usually weed out the applications any more. The hiring supervisor weeds through and selects the top 5-10 applications, then prioritizes them to call the top 3-5 for interviews. If a suitable candidate is not found among those, then other potential applicants are called. As a last resort, the position may be re-opened for additional applicants. The City does have some general rubric guidelines that can be utilized. The Interviews are conducted by a selection team (usually 2-5 members).

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

Lack of the required educational background, and/or completely unrelated type of work experience.

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?

Present themselves well, with confidence and honesty, both in the application, resume and in the interview. Do their homework, ask the right questions in a conversational manner. Anticipate the questions to be asked and be prepared to give a good answer without too much hesitance.

I want to hire someone who is

competent

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?

√ 2

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?

Experienced candidates would likely be preferred, but not necessarily the deciding factor for entry-level.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

Not dying in the sense that people will not be needed–but the roles are changing in many ways (not always for the better!)

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

Find the type of position for which you have passion and the best aptitude. Learn about and appreciate all of the roles/positions played throughout the organization.

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under 100-200 staff members, Public, Southern US, State of the Job Market 2015, Suburban area

Those who don’t evolve will die out

View of street vendors at 7th and B Streets, NW (Ca. 1880) MarketThis 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:

All

This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in an urban area in the Middle East.

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

√ 75-100

Approximately what percentage of those would you say were hirable?

√ 25% or less

And how would you define “hirable”?

Meets the minimum qualifications

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

Chair of the search committee does the initial review, identifying those who meet the minimum. The qualifying applicants are then reviewed and ranked by the members of the search committee.

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

Not reading the job description and not having an MLS.

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 requirements and follow directions.

I want to hire someone who is

Nice

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?

√ 5-6

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?

Not officially, but in practice

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

It is evolving and changing to meet the needs of our users. Those who don’t evolve will die out

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.

Leave a comment

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

The job hunter is WASTING THE TIME OF THE SEARCH COMMITTEE by applying for a job if he/she does not meet the written qualifications.

Young boy tending freshly stocked fruit and vegetable stand at Center Market, 02181915This 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:

catalogers

This librarian works at a library with 100-200 staff members in a suburban area in the Southern 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”?

They meet the written qualifications for the job.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

Our search committee evaluates each application against the rubric.

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

Applicants do not meet the written qualifications for the job.

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?

The job hunter should only apply for jobs for which he/she meets the written qualifications. The job hunter is WASTING THE TIME OF THE SEARCH COMMITTEE by applying for a job if he/she does not meet the written qualifications. We are not allowed to consider the application of anyone who does not meet the written qualifications.

I want to hire someone who is

qualified

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?

√ 5-6

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 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?

Experience is preferred but not required for entry-level professional positions. Para-professional experience is valued.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

Our services are still needed.

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, Southern US, State of the Job Market 2015, Suburban area