Tag Archives: Midwestern US

A Suit and as Much Jewelry as You Like!

Takin' Care of Business by Flickr user Catatronic


This anonymous interview is with an Academic librarian who has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee. This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a Suburban area in the Midwestern US.

What Candidates Should Wear

Should the candidate wear a suit to the interview?

√ Yes, absolutely! It shows respect and professionalism

An outfit with a coordinated blazer and trousers:

√ Counts as a suit

Bare arms are inappropriate in an interview, even in the summer.

√ I don’t care

If a woman wears a skirt to an interview, should she also wear pantyhose?

√ Never, pantyhose is for my grandmother

Women should wear make-up to an interview:

√ I don’t care what’s on the face, it’s what’s in the brain that counts

Do you expect different levels of formality of dress, depending on the position you’re hiring for?

√ Yes, the higher the position, the more formal I expect the candidate to dress

Which jewelry may candidates wear: (Please select all that are acceptable)

√ Single, simple necklace, bracelet, and/or ring
√ A few simple necklaces, bracelets, and/or rings
√ All of the simple necklaces, bracelets, and rings he or she can load on
√ Arty or more elaborate necklaces, bracelets, or rings
√ Earrings
√ Multiple Ear Piercings

Which hair colors are acceptable for candidates:

√ All of them, even pink

The way a candidate dresses should:

√ Show personality

What This Library Wears

On a scale of one (too dressed up for my workplace) to five (too casual), khakis and a polo shirt are:


What’s the dress code at your library/organization?

√ Business casual

Are there any specific items of clothing, etc. that are forbidden by your dress code? (Please check all that apply)

√ N/A: We wear what we want!

Librarians at your organization wear: (Please check all that apply)

√ Name tags

This survey was co-authored by Jill of Librarian Hire Fashion – submit your interview outfit to her blog!

Photo: Takin’ Care of Business by Flickr user Catatronic


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Filed under 10-50 staff members, Academic, Midwestern US, Suburban area, What Should Candidates Wear?

Resume and Cover Letter Are Not Going to Take as Long as a Resume/Cover letter/References/Application/Online Job Application

Czar Ferdinand hunting (LOC)This anonymous interview is with a job hunter who is currently employed (even if part-time or in an unrelated field) and was hired within the last two months. This person is/has been looking for a new position for more than 18 months. This person is looking in Academic libraries, Library vendor/service providers, Public libraries, School libraries, Special libraries, bookstores, and anything, at the entry level and for positions requiring at least two years of experience. Here is how this person describes experience with internships/volunteering:

I had a 3 month service learning project volunteering (menial tasks) at a small library, and a 6 month project at a public library in adult services.

This job hunter is in a suburban area in the Midwestern US, and is/was willing to move anywhere.

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

1) Full time hours and benefits
2) A good supervisor
3) I prefer the Chicagoland area

Where do you look for open positions?

Reaching Across Illinois Library Systems (RAILS) job board
college/university websites

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?

It depends on what the institution requires. A resume and cover letter are not going to take as long as a resume/cover letter/references/application/online job application.

I spend a good 5-10 minutes comparing my resume to the position description, noting keywords that I can use on my resume to highlight my applicable skills.

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 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
√ Other:

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
√ Being able to present

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

Is this a problem? I was under the impression that employers are bombarded with resumes for every position. Surely, they can find a qualified applicant.

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

ROB: I just tested for [a job]…
MIKE: …yeah, a month ago.
CHARLES: Oh, I’m sorry. How’d your folks take it?
ROB: I haven’t heard an official “no” yet.
–Swingers, 1996

Seriously, you can’t contact me enough. Tell me you’re sorry and you are going to interview other candidates. Tell me that the position has been filled. Don’t leave me feeling like I just sent my resume into a black hole. And don’t send me a snail mail letter 3 months after I’ve already forgotten I applied for that job. Is it too much to ask for a timely response?

What do you think is the secret to getting hired?

It is, without a doubt, knowing someone and networking. Which is why it is miserable for the long term unemployed.

This survey was co-authored by Naomi House from I Need A Library Job – Do you need one? Check it out!

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Filed under Academic, Job hunter's survey, Midwestern US, Other Organization or Library Type, Public, School, Special, Suburban area