Job Hunting in 2020? Join Me!

Career Blog

Published: January 9, 2019 by Greta Snyder

Is the new year the time for your next career move? It’s always good to keep your eyes open for opportunities, but when the pressure is on to find a new job everyone could use some tips and inspiration. Join me as a share my what I learn in my job seeking process as a new LIS professional.

Where to begin

As a Fall 2019 graduate of the SJSU iSchool MLIS program, starting the search can be overwhelming. It’s not like you can just google “jobs” and find the right one that utilizes your skills and speaks to your passion. To get started, familiarize yourself with different job search tools and establish your profile. This way, you feel some forward momentum and can keep building your profile, network and job search perfection. So, let’s start with three useful job search sites and some helpful tips to get started:

LinkedIn: it’s all about building your network and sharing intentionally.

  • Make sure to let recruiters know you’re open to opportunities (in profile settings).
  • Add skills to your profile. This is how LinkedIn’s algorithm feeds you potential job opportunities.
  • Click yes to receive alerts for targeted searches based on job-type and location and for specific companies you’re interested in working for to be notified of new openings.
  • Put your LinkedIn profile URL on your resume. Even if you don’t get the job, you can make a future recruiter/HR connection.
  • People expect to be connected with on LinkedIn. So, get out of your comfort zone and start connecting. It’s like an online mixer; so, jump in, start the conversation, and save to your contacts. Then follow-up when job-seeking to ask for advice or potential opportunities.
  • Send a personalized invite whenever possible. On the mobile app version, it’s more like a Tinder swipe, you’re not easily able to include a message. So, I recommend the full website for sending invites. Read my previous post on LinkedIn for advice on writing an invite.
  • Unlike Instagram or Facebook where followers might get annoyed by constant posts and stop following you or mute your feed, LinkedIn’s vibe is surprisingly more casual. Why? Most LinkedIn users review content when they want to, versus receiving constant mobile notifications. So, share what you’re up to and tag others and organizations with an @ and their name, e.g., @Greta (Margaret) Snyder.
  • Join relevant groups and organizations, as they will often post job opportunities and will provide you a wealth of potential quality connections. For example, LinkedIn’s LIS Career Options group, with over 13,000 members, often has job postings as well as career resources and questions/answers.

ZipRecruiter: Hiring managers receive hundreds of applicants, so how can you stand out?

  • Use your cover letter to tell a story. Show your personality and express why you’re interested in the specific role and the organization. Always write a specific cover letter to put a voice to your resume.
  • Research the hiring company. Understand the community they serve or their target audience. Become familiar with the company’s mission, values and direction.
  • Focus on quality. Instead of getting frustrated by applying to every possible job out of desperation with one-click applications, focus on crafting specific application packages for jobs that best fit your goals. Are you excited about the opportunity and qualified? Fantastic; focus your energy on articulating how you can able to add value to the company.

Handshake: we have access to Handshake through SJSU iSchool and it’s an incredible student resource.

  • Not familiar yet? Handshake is particularly awesome for students and recent grads. Not only are jobs for experienced professionals listed, so are internships. Plus, the site is dedicated to recruiters and organizations reaching out to students in our particular LIS degree field.
  • Update and expand your profile so recruiters can see your experience and your field of study.
  • Indicate that you’re actively looking for jobs. This way you’ll receive recruiter messages.
  • Check regularly:  new opportunities are posted frequently, and the deadlines are often pressing.

Final thoughts

The most important takeaway is to keep your profile up-to-date and check in often, so you don’t miss an opportunity. Demonstrate that you’re an active student and/or professional. Reach out and follow up.

Explore the amazing resources on the SJSU iSchool website in the Career Development section on job searching. Looking for a job is a job in and of itself, but you’re the information-seeking, problem-solving, personable and compassionate LIS professional. Job-hunting can be demoralizing and intimidating, so remain confident in your seeking skills and the trending LIS skills that your SJSU iSchool experience brings to you.

If you’re also on the job hunt with me in 2020, please email me, I’d love to interview you, hear your tips and progress and be there to congratulate you when you get the job! My next post will be on next steps on these job search websites, for example, on LinkedIn will be asking for recommendations, so stay posted and I’ll share how that process goes.

Career development opportunities​

Jobs in Handshake (requires login to Handshake)


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