New York Public Library Interview Questions | Glassdoor

New York Public Library Interview Questions

Updated Feb 22, 2017
22 Interview Reviews

Interview Experience

Interview Experience
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Getting an Interview
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22 Candidate Interview Reviews Back to all Interviews

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  1.  

    Assistant Director Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at New York Public Library (New York, NY).

    Interview

    I went through three separate interviews over the course of about a month-and-a-half. The first interview was a one hour, one-on-one meeting with an HR representative for general screening. I then had a one-hour skype interview with the hiring manager, and finally a one hour interview with a panel of six employees representing different departments. The interview process was organized and relatively swift. Everyone I encountered was pleasant and polite.

    My negative rating comes from the fact that, since my third interview for what would have been a senior role, I have waited over two months, and have had no news whatsoever, nor any responses to my written requests for an update. I understand that the NYPL screening process takes time and that negotiations on an offer can drag-on, but failing to give candidates any updates on their status is rude and unprofessional. I assume they have hired someone else, and am thankful I didn't get an offer as an institution that treats potential employees with such disrespect isn't a place I'd want to work.

    Interview Questions

    • Question were almost entirely focused on past experience and providing specific examples of projects or situations.   Answer Question
  2.  

    Coordinator Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at New York Public Library (New York, NY) in September 2016.

    Interview

    Very tough interview. It lasted over 30 minutes. There were two interviewers that asked me very specific questions. I reiterated my resume and matched it to the questions they were asking. They really wanted to know about about my administrative skills. They asked for a writing sample afterwards.

    Interview Questions

    • Mainly about my community affairs and administrative skills.   Answer Question
  3. Helpful (1)  

    Associate Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3+ months. I interviewed at New York Public Library (New York, NY) in July 2016.

    Interview

    Basic interview with standard questions ("describe a time when..." or "what's your working style?" etc). Started with HR and then moved onto meeting with supervising managers. Throughout the process, I tried to maintain contact, sending out thank you notes, emailing HR for updates, but they rarely emailed back. The process was neither speedy nor transparent.

    Interview Questions

    • Describe a time you disagreed with a supervisor.
      Do you work best in a team or on your own?  
      1 Answer
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  5. Helpful (2)  

    Adult Librarian Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at New York Public Library (New York, NY) in April 2016.

    Interview

    Met with a three person panel (Managing Librarian, Talent Acquisition Partner and Associate Director) and discussed the responsibilities and expectations the panel had for both their library and the librarians they were looking to bring on board.

    Interview Questions

    • Why are you interested in working at New York Public Library?   Answer Question
    • What languages can you read and communicate in?   Answer Question
    • What experiences do you have doing community outreach with your previous employer   Answer Question
    • Describe how you managed an experience where technology failed you?   Answer Question
    • Describe a situation you were in where a customer was challenging and how you satisfied their requests?   Answer Question
    • What training can you provide to our users? Describe your teaching methods, and how you developed at training program at your previous position?   Answer Question
    • Provide an example of how you managed the relationships with your team when you and your teammates did not agree on how to handle a situation. How did you resolve the dispute?   Answer Question
  6. Helpful (1)  

    Administrative Coordinator Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4 weeks. I interviewed at New York Public Library (New York, NY) in November 2015.

    Interview

    I applied online for the position and got called in for an interview a week or two later. The interviewer asked me a bunch of questions about my experience and what I was looking to for in a position. She explained the department (which I didn't know a ton about) and what they were looking for. The interviewer was friendly, but definitely grilled me about my past work. The job was interesting but it sounded like they had a lot of candidates and I didn't end up getting an offer.

    Interview Questions

    • An example of when I had multiple projects going on at the same time with different key players and how I managed them.   1 Answer
    • HOw I use communication to resolve difficult problems at work.   Answer Question
  7. Helpful (6)  

    Librarian Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at New York Public Library (New York, NY) in August 2015.

    Interview

    I applied online and was invited to do a phone interview. This consisted of hammering me with questions about my experience. The interviewer seemed to be hammering away at what he perceived to be a deficiency in my experience (ie. running library "programs"). However, since there is nothing on my resume about this I am wondering why I was even invited to interview. I have some customer service experience both in person and via the telephone. And I was able to demonstrate various competencies in terms of problem solving, but I came away from the phone interview feeling as though I had botched it.

    Therefore, I was surprised when they set up a panel interview for me. This group was a lot friendlier, but I had to answer the same canned questions from a list. Fortunately I was prepared with some answers, but I felt that I was probably never going to hear from them again. I usually do very badly in these types of job interview situations because I feel like what I am doing is not rocket science and I feel like an idiot acting as though it is. Anyway, they told me they would call me in a few days (And yes, I have heard that one about a million times). The time frame they set forth has passed and I honestly do not believe I will hear from them, but if by some miracle I get an offer, I will follow up.

    If selected, the next step would be for a background check and drug test before a formal offer is made.

    Interview Questions

    • Time you were frustrated by an inability to serve a customer?   1 Answer
  8. Helpful (6)  

    Librarian Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Negative Experience

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at New York Public Library (New York, NY) in August 2015.

    Interview

    So they're supposedly doing a mass hiring of librarians, I believe i was phone interviewed by the same man 2 other posters referenced. He was rude and even scoffed at one of my answers. But I too was sent on to a panel interview, where the interviewers were really nice and i thought it went well. HR said i would hear within a week- nothing. I wish they would at least send a no reply email telling you you didn't get the position instead of you waiting to hear, or at least update your online application to say "review complete- no offer."

    Interview Questions

  9. Helpful (5)  

    Librarian Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at New York Public Library in August 2015.

    Interview

    Terrible experience. I believe the NYPL hired an outside consultant to conduct the preliminary interviews. The recruiter made me repeat each answer multiple times so he could paraphrase it and write it down. He would constantly interrupt me and ask me to paraphrase it for him in 3 words or less (he said he had a small area to write in). I was only asked about 3 questions total and the majority of the 30 minute interview was spent helping him transcribe my answers. He was extremely rude and condescending. I do have an in-person interview, but this experience doesn't make me excited about working for them.

    Interview Questions

    • Why do you want to work with the NYPL?   Answer Question
    • Describe a time when a library patron was angry and how you remedied the situation and got them what they wanted.   Answer Question
  10. Helpful (3)  

    Librarian Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ months. I interviewed at New York Public Library in August 2015.

    Interview

    I, as others have reported, had an initial interview with a condescending individual who seemed to be a contract representative hired to conduct screenings. Nonetheless, I was invited for a follow-up panel interview in the HR offices.

    The panel was fortunately much friendlier and asked general questions one would expect for a public librarian position. I was told that I would hear back by the month's end, but nothing so far. I wish NYPL would at least update their online portal to reflect their decision.

    Interview Questions

    • Discuss a time when you creatively solved a problem   1 Answer
  11.  

    Administrative Coordinator Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at New York Public Library (New York, NY) in February 2015.

    Interview

    Received an email for a phone interview. Phone interview was standard; about 15 minutes long. Called the following week to come in for an in-person interview. The HR recruiter was extremely helpful in that she reminded me what to review and gave me important information to look up about the company. She gave me a couple questions that they may ask. Asked if I wanted anything to drink; very hospitable. The in-person interview itself was rushed. The woman who interviewed me was (very) pregnant, and seemed not interested in my responses. Not sure if she already found the perfect candidate or just wanted the interview to be over. Didn't get the position but was very grateful for the opportunity.

    Interview Questions

    • Tell me about your previous experience at (insert company here)   1 Answer
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