An Effective Librarian Resume Example for This Year

The ideal librarian is well-read, organized, and intelligent. These are qualities you can prove with a great resume. Here’s how you can write a strong resume for the job!

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Librarian Resume Examples

If you want to land a job as a librarian, you will need a great resume. Whether you want to work in a public library or a university library, you will need to show that you have the skills for the job, and your professional resume can make or break a job application. Here’s what you need to know about writing a great librarian resume.

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What Should I Highlight in a Librarian Resume?

When you apply to be a professional librarian, the hiring manager will be looking for a specific skill set and certain interpersonal skills. These days being a librarian requires strong computing skills and a basic understanding of information science to manage the average library system. Of course, working in a college library as a librarian or archivist will require more advanced skills and training than being a high school librarian. As such, the skills you will need to highlight on your librarian resume will depend on the precise job description.


The Structure of a Librarian Resume

There are three main resume formats that you can choose from — chronological, functional, and combination. A chronological resume prioritizes work history and is best for those with many years of experience. A functional resume prioritizes skills and is better for those who lack work experience. A combination, or hybrid resume, balances the two. No matter what format you choose and what kind of librarian position you want to apply for, your resume should maintain this basic structure:
 
Contact information 
 
Your resume header should include your full name, phone number, and other relevant contact information. You can also include any professional social media links, such as your LinkedIn profile.
 
Resume summary/objective
 
Your librarian resume should include either a resume summary or a resume objective statement, but not both. A resume summary statement is a summary of the most relevant skills and achievements a job seeker has. This makes it best for people who have many years of experience. Recent graduates undertaking a job search for entry-level positions will find a resume objective more beneficial. The resume objective is a statement of goals and a rundown of top skills.
 
Here’s an example of a  resume objective:
 
Graduate of [XYZ] and bachelor of arts seeking a position as a school librarian. Working knowledge of library systems as a result of volunteer work with adult literacy initiatives in [abc] county.
 
Here’s an example of a resume summary:
 
Librarian with five years’ experience at county library serving 2,000 visitors a week. Well-versed in cataloging software, research and customer service.
 
Skills
 
Your resume skills section should contain all of the skills that make you most suited to the job title you are applying for. This section should include all of the hard skills (aka technical skills) and soft skills that are relevant to your job application. This section is incredibly important to ensuring that your resume ranks well in applicant tracking systems (ATS) that employers often use to scan resumes. Here are some examples of librarian skills to add to your resume:

  • Communication skills
  • Library management (e.g., library collection, library budget)
  • Managing library resources
  • Shelving
  • Computer skills
  • Excel proficiency
  • Microsoft Office
  • Reference services
  • Community outreach
  • Time management
  • Managing library databases

Work history

 
No matter what resume format you choose, your work experience section should be presented in reverse-chronological order. This means you should put your most recent role first. Give your specific job title, for example, library assistant or reference librarian. Also, include where you worked and employment dates. You should also give a brief overview of your duties and achievements in that role.
 
Education
 
A resume education section should include details of your top and most relevant academic achievements. For example, you should list your bachelor’s degree in library science in this section, and can also include relevant coursework. You can also create additional sections for your professional memberships and other relevant information. This can be highly valuable and make you stick in a recruiter’s mind, so if you are a member of the American Library Association (ALA), for example, you should include that information. 

Key Do’s and Don’ts for Your Librarian Resume

These simple resume writing tips will help you distinguish your resume from all the others on a hiring manager’s desk: 
 
DO

  • Include professional certifications

If you have any professional certifications for certain skills (for example, First Aid or computer skills), you should include these on a resume. Supplementary skills like these will look great on your resume if you present them in addition to the skills required by the job description.

  • Be specific

When you discuss your achievements and successes, be as specific as possible. Give figures and percentages where you can. For example, rather than saying “Improved performance” say “Improved performance by 15%.

  • Be your own cheerleader

Self-awareness is key, but humility will not get you your dream job. Be your own biggest fan and state your strengths and capabilities clearly. 

 
DON’T

  • Use passive language

Passive language is one guaranteed way to lose a hiring manager’s interest. Avoid passive phrases like “Was tasked with” or “Was responsible for” and instead use active phrases like “Created” or “Managed”. 

  • Include your high school GPA

You shouldn’t include your high school GPA unless you are still in high school or college, or have recently graduated. And even then, you shouldn’t list your GPA unless it’s 3.5 or higher.

  • Overcomplicate your resume template

While creative resume templates can be useful in certain industries, the role of the librarian is quite a traditional one. Straightforward resume layouts are more effective in traditional industries and too many design elements can make it hard for an ATS to scan your resume. Just use one of our professionally-designed resume templates as a foundation for your own.


FAQ: Librarian Resume Examples

Q: Do I need to include a cover letter for a librarian application?

Yes, you should always include a cover letter to support a librarian job application. A cover letter is your chance to catch and hold a recruiter’s attention by communicating with them directly. Consider relevant cover letter examples to get inspiration for your librarian cover letter.

Q: How can I write a librarian resume without a lot of work experience?

If you lack work experience as a librarian but you have other professional experience to showcase, try to highlight how your experience is relevant to the job description. If you have no work history at all, for example, because you are a recent graduate, you can showcase relevant coursework and academic achievements. You can also list unpaid or volunteer work and internships.

Q: How do I change my librarian resume to apply to different jobs?

If you want to use your librarian resume in a career change, your main focus should be meeting the requirements of the job description. Read the job description you want to apply for carefully and highlight the skills they list as required. Include any skills you have that match them in your resume as a priority. If your work experience isn’t relevant to the job application, provide details of experiences or successes that involve relevant skills or taught you something relevant to the new job you’re applying to.

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