Librarian Career Opportunities

The Different Jobs Available to a Skilled Librarian

Many people think that being a librarian is a fairly straightforward occupation, with little variety between one job and the next. They couldn't be more wrong. Librarians can work in a wide variety of capacities; once a degree in library science has been earned, a librarian must decide what type of organization or work he or she would like to pursue.

Specialty Librarians

Some librarians work for organizations, organizing, researching, and cataloguing information specific to their needs. Such librarians may work in information centers or libraries run by

  • Government agencies
  • Corporations
  • Law firms
  • Museums
  • Unions or professional associations
  • Medical centers or hospitals
  • Religious organizations
  • Laboratories

The Computer-Savvy Librarian

In today's marketplace, librarians with computer skills can find a broad array of endeavors to engage in. Working with automated-systems and modern computer systems has become a job unto its own. Today's librarians work as information architects, planning, designing, and implementing how information is classified, organized, stored, and retrieved. In addition, the birth of automated systems in library science has resulted in more librarians working on administrative and budgeting responsibilities, grant writing, and specialized research requests.

Moving Up, Moving On

With the diverse array of information that must be managed by today's libraries, experienced librarians can open up many doors of opportunity as the years go on. Administrative positions, department chairs, and directorships are just some of the types of jobs that can be achieved.

In addition, many jobs outside the typical library setting will become more common in years to come. Due to librarians' unique research and organizational skills, as well as their knowledge of computer databases, librarians are becoming desirable hires for companies who need their information to be well-managed and organized. Librarians can review vast amounts of information and analyze, evaluate, and organize it according to a company’s specific needs.

Of course, with the widespread connections of the Internet, companies are looking to take advatnage of this resource in order to have it work for themselves and their customers. As such, many librarians are being hired, some as consultants, some as full-time employees, to aid in the structuring and dissemination of information over the Internet. Typical job titles for such work include Systems Analyst, Database Specialist, Webmaster, or Web Developers.

Finally, librarians should remember that the types of jobs available in the public sphere are just as diverse and engaging as those offered by the fast-paced private sector. Remember, a librarian is someone with a skill set that very few people have – a conception of information and its organization as a whole. Many individuals know how to find a bit of information, but very few of them know how to categorize, organize, and manage large amounts of information to make it easy to navigate and readily available for others. That is where the true skills of a librarian come into play. As a librarian, one can find work in the public sector as an archivist, researcher, or curator for a museum or public library. In addition, if one enjoys working with children or young adults, school librarians often act as both teachers and librarians – and indeed, oftentimes must be certified as both.

All in all, today's world offers a wealth of opportunity to the skilled librarian, and there are truly no limits to what one can do.