Today, Dorothea at Caveat Lector wrote about Them jobhuntin’ blues. Oh yes, I do feel your pain. After applying for jobs since late September, I really think I could get hired as a usability expert for human resource departments and universities. If it takes me more then three minutes on a university or library’s website to find the page with a list of current job openings, there is a problem. I send out my love to those whose front pages have a link directly to a jobs or human resources page. I send bad vibes to the places where I still can’t find your jobs page after being forced to use your site’s search engine. Is that the sort of place I’d want to work at anyways? And while I am a big supporter of technology, I am not a fan of these new generic “Career Track” databases, where I’m not sure whether to enter all of the minutae the system asks for in the generic application (which is all in my resume and the system says is not required) or whether to take my chances and skip it. It would be so nice if those systems (which are the same at many schools) could be linked in some way so that if I applied for a job at… say… Brown University, it would remember that information from the jobs I applied for at the University of Arizona or the University of Vermont. Instead, I end up entering the same basic info over and over again for each school I apply to. I keep thinking that if people want applicants, they wouldn’t make such involved applications (especially when much of the information requested would be in someone’s resume). After doing this for more than three months and applying to countless public libraries, academic libraries, corporate libraries, and government libraries, I have a great appreciation for the libraries that simply ask for my cover letter, resume, and list of three references. Why make things any more difficult than that unless we’re on your short list? It’s so very frustrating to spend an inordinate amount of time on an application only to find that you didn’t even make it to the interview phase. But, unlike what I was told when I decided to go into the library field, this is an employers’ market, and very few places are really seeing any sort of “librarian shortage”.

While it is frustrating to still be looking for a job, I certainly haven’t given up hope. Almost every day, I see another job opening that looks interesting. And I figure that at some point, one of them will think that I look interesting too. If I don’t have a job by mid-February (when the lease on our place is up), hubby and I are going to move up to Chicago. His parents have a small apartment up there, and said they’d be happy to let us use it for a few months. I’m quite fond of Chicago (though not the thought of moving there in February!) and I hope to have better luck looking for jobs from there. I’ve never actually lived in the Midwest, but I think it’ll be a welcome change from South Florida. If anyone knows of any job leads up there or has any Chicago-area-related advice for me, drop me a line. I’d certainly appreciate it.

So, even though I noticed you’re applying for some of the same jobs as I am, good luck with your job hunt, Dorothea. I hope we both end up in stituations that are right for us.