Tag Archives: lis jobs

A webpage or electronic portfolio with previous work is a must.

Fish 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:

Public services/reference librarians

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

Met minimum qualifications and had the skills we were looking for/needed.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

All applications were evaluated by the search committee.

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

Did not meet minimum 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?

Be able to demonstrate the needed/required skills. A webpage or electronic portfolio with previous work is a must.

I want to hire someone who is

adaptable

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?

√ 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

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

Varies by position, but any kind of experience is a big plus.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ Yes

Why or why not?

I could go on for hours. Want to get coffee? The profession is not keeping up with the changes in information publication and dissemination and changes in higher education. Library school curriculum is mostly the same as it was 15-20 years ago, and far, far too many librarians simply want to do what they did in their jobs 15-20 years ago. So many experienced librarians think technology is only something “young” people know about and refuse to learn about emerging technology. More and more academic libraries need to demonstrate impact on student learning and retention, difficult enough, and without the ability to change and adapt and re-define what librarianship is that will just not happen. Not just demonstrating the impact, but actually making an impact. Because we really do not need someone with a master’s degree demonstrating how to use a discovery tool to undergrads. Librarians need to learn to do something more, better, and different to survive. Of course, a lot of people will answer this question with the usual “hip, hip, hooray” nonsense about being passionate about librarianship and how great it is, but that is doing nothing to keep the profession relevant. We need critical eyes to evaluate the profession and make changes. Who is going to do that? Certainly not ALA or ACRL.

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

I would rather hire somebody who has a ton of IT experience or has a PhD in education or who actually understands about research than a person who only has an MLIS

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:

just librarians, plain and simple

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?

√ more than 100, but less than 200

Approximately what percentage of those would you say were hirable?

√ 25% or less

And how would you define “hirable”?

someone who met our characteristics of what we specified in the job description. We even had people apply who didn’t yet have their degrees. That job was specifically for someone with supervisory experience, and hardly anybody had that.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

HR doesn’t weed out any. They are evaluated by a committee using the position announcement.

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

They don’t have any professional library experience at all.

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

√ Other: sometimes

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

In your resume, don’t give me the generic “sat at reference desk, delivered instruction” when describing your reference & instruction experience. I already know exactly what a reference & instruction librarian does. Tell me HOW YOU MADE A DIFFERENCE.

Oh yeah, and get a crapload of IT knowledge too.

I want to hire someone who is

ambitious

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: 0

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 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?

Even for entry-level professional positions, we look for experience, like an internship or a grad student job in a library. We have in the past specifically advertised for “new graduates” with 5 years or less since their MLIS. But even those, we were looking for someone with a little experience.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ Yes

Why or why not?

In the sense that you need a “library degree.” That was just a hoop to jump through 25 years ago, and it’s a hoop to jump through now. I would rather hire somebody who has a ton of IT experience or has a PhD in education or who actually understands about research than a person who only has an MLIS. The MLIS is just for enculturation. There is NOTHING, and I mean nothing, unique about library knowledge. Give me a good, knowledgeable person, and I can indoctrinate them into librarianship on the job.

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

We need more professionals with the bigger picture and a vision for the future

melanie lightbody
Mel Lightbody has been working in libraries for over 30 years and been a director for over 15. She has worked as a professional librarian in Washington, Oregon and now California. She loves encouraging and mentoring others in the profession.
Melanie Lightbody is a public librarian who has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee. She hires the following types of LIS professionals:

children’s and branch managers so far.

She works at a library in a 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?

√ Other: 6 to 10 were hirable

And how would you define “hirable”?

Someone who has the mix of experience and skills to fit the position we’re hiring for.

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

We only see applicants who score over 70 on the initial screening.This initial screening is done by the County’s HR department. Then the hiring team reviews the applications to decide who to interview.

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

At the HR level, not meeting the minimum qualifications as identified in the official position description. These need to be explicit on the job application.

At our level, not showing any specific interest in the position we’re offering will make us less likely to interview them. Also, our experience with candidates from out of the geographic area has not been great so we may forgo interviewing them unless they show specific interest and experience.

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

√ Other: No, but I’d love to if they asked me

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

Know the job description, tailor your application to it as explicitly as possible. Getting through HR pre-screening may a job hunter’s biggest hurdle.

I want to hire someone who is

Open

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?

√ Other: there were less but we’ve added two more the last two years.

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?

workplace requires two years of experience

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ I don’t know

Why or why not?

We need more professionals with the bigger picture and a vision for the future. It is not about the realities of busy libraries, it is about the perception that libraries are no longer needed because middle-class and up often don’t think they do need them and perhaps they don’t.

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

Show specific interest in the job you are applying for. Stay away from generic cover letters, resumes and applications.

Do you hire librarians? Take this survey: http://tinyurl.com/hiringlibjobmarketsurvey

Or take other Hiring Librarians surveys.

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Filed under Public, Rural area, State of the Job Market 2015, Western US

We are always looking for new, excited librarians to hire when we have an opening.

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

Technical service staff, faculty librarians, archivists, instructors

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

Has an MLS from an ALA-accredited school, has some (even minimal) library experience, shows a basic understanding of library terminology and technology (MARC records, ILS systems, etc.)

How are applications evaluated, and by whom?

A committee is always formed. HR does not weed out applicants, the committee does. Usually, the applications are looked at by all the committee members, who then meet and discuss who gets cut immediately (ie who doesn’t meet the basic requirements for the job), and then the remaining applicants are discussed at length for who gets a telephone and/or in-person interview.

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

Not having the required degree 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?

Tailor your resume and cover letter to show that you specifically meet all of the minimum/preferred qualifications. If you don’t show that you meet those qualifications right away in the application process, you won’t make it to the interview round.

I want to hire someone who is

capable

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

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

It happens in practice. We usually have a great applicant pool with lots of experience applying, so we usually gravitate towards those applicants. That being said, we consider all sorts of library work (part time, as a student worker, even volunteering) as library experience.

Is librarianship a dying profession?

√ No

Why or why not?

I think it’s a shifting profession (more technological skills required than before), but it’s not dying. We have the same number of positions here that we’ve had in the past. We are always working on exciting new projects and collaborations.

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

Keep your head up! We are always looking for new, excited librarians to hire when we have an opening.

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, Midwestern US, State of the Job Market 2015, Urban area

Oh Look, a New Survey of People Who Hire Librarians

Hello,

Do you hire librarians or other LIS workers?

We are looking for hiring managers, members of hiring/search committees, HR professionals, etc. who are willing to take 5-10 minutes to fill out a survey about the LIS job market.

This is a new survey for Hiring Librarians (www.hiringlibrarians.com). The purpose is to gather and disseminate information about hiring, rather than to perform formal research. Responses will be presented on the blog, anonymously or with a short bio, depending on the preference of the responder. We are very committed to maintaining confidentiality if desired.

The direct link to the survey is:
http://tinyurl.com/hiringlibjobmarketsurvey
(You can take a look at the questions and browse through the entire survey without having to answer anything).

Please feel free to share with any colleagues who might be interested. I’m also happy to answer any questions or concerns you might have, please contact me.

YOUR PAL,
Emily

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Filed under News and Administration

Stats and Graphs: Hiring Librarians’ 2014 in Review

This is the kind of thing I’m always curious about with other blogs, so here are my auto-generated WordPress stats for you, dear readers.

Here’s an excerpt:

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 250,000 times in 2014. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 11 days for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Views didn’t quite double, but it’s certainly up over last year.

It’s been an interesting run.  I started this blog in February 2012, so we are coming up on THREE YEARS.

I must admit, I’ve been a bit on Hiring Librarians auto-pilot this year.  Part of it is being less of a one woman show. I’ve had excellent help.  Currently, Sarah Keil is asking and posting the Further Questions series, Jennifer Devine is taking care of transcribing the responses to open surveys, and Sherle Abramson-Bluhm is handling the Resume/CV Review service.   And over the summer a number of folks helped with a big push to get the backlog of survey responses transcribed.   Thank you all!

But another part of my auto-pilotness is that I’m not job hunting, so my personal interest has waned.

Nonetheless, I’m thinking of a new survey, maybe a state of the job market interview with hiring managers.

Or maybe something else?  Any ideas or requests?

 

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Filed under News and Administration

Job Hunter’s Web Guide: LisList

Ever wished for a REALLY BIG LIST of LIS jobs?  Look no further than LisList.  Keep reading to learn more.


lislist

What is it?  Please give us your elevator speech!

LisList is a list of U.S. library jobs, updated daily.  It includes public, academic, school, and special library jobs.  We are especially interested in  those that require an MLS or equivalent.

 When was it started?  Why was it started?

It started in February 2014, so it’s brand new.  It was started to fill what we saw as a gap in the job search resources available for librarians.  There are a number of good sites that offer articles and advice, and some of them include job listings by state or specialty, or job listings submitted by employers .  But other than LisList, there is no clearinghouse with one big list of jobs (like the one Lisjobs featured in its heyday).

Who runs it?

Amadee Ricketts, a youth services librarian from Colorado, and James Orndorf, a photographer who happens to be married to a librarian.

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

We are definitely not career experts, but we’re good at making lists.

 Who is your target audience?

Librarians, aspiring librarians, and library workers.

 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?

The list grows every day, but users can check it out as needed.

Does your site provide:

Job listings

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

√ Twitter: @theLisList (highlights a Job of the Day)

√  Tumblr: http://lislist.tumblr.com (highlights a Job of the Day)

Do you charge for anything on your site?

No.

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

Not yet, but hopefully in the future.

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

Nope.

Do you run a web resource focused on LIS jobs or careers?  Or is there one you’d like to know more about?  Email me a hiringlibrariansATgmail to suggest a site for the Job Hunter’s Web Guide.

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Filed under Job Hunters Web Guide