Insights from practitioners in Information Management

Issue 45 – Where to find job information

Welcome to the May edition of Information Overload for Registrants and other interested readers. We hope you found the last edition useful, and have managed to put some of the suggestions into practice in re-creating that very important document.

There are so many things that we could cover in these newsletters, that it is sometimes hard to choose a topic. Do we re-visit occupational health and safety in the aftermath of the miners who were trapped in Beaconsfield in Tasmania. Do we re-visit the topic of Continuing Professional Development, after all this is the topic that may well ensure that you do get the job you’ve always wanted? Do we cover the subject of how not to behave – or is this something that is implied when you start work for a host employer (don’t be late, be courteous to your new colleagues, don’t steal the stationery etc). Or do we cover something entirely different? 

In this issue we will look at:

• Where to find job information!
o Newspapers
o Employment agencies
o Online job boards
o E-lists
o Word of mouth & networks
o Internal Notice boards & company newsletters
o Organisational websites
• A Thought to ponder

Where to find job information!
Well it all depends on the work that you want to do as to where you will find job information. If your greatest ambition is to work in a particular shop, then the best place to look to see if there are any jobs on offer is the shop itself. If however, you would prefer to work in a particular organisation, the best way to determine if there are any vacancies is to call the HR department and ask. Or if you have access to the Internet, then a quick visit to the employment pages of the organisation web site is the best place to go.

You see, finding work isn’t hard if you just want a job. However, if you want a particular kind of position, that utilises your own skills and abilities, then you will need to make some decisions:
• What kind of job do you want? – Permanent, part-time, short-term contract to earn a bit of extra money whilst you study or voluntary, one that pays lots of money, one that has the potential for promotion. The choice as they say is yours.
• What hours would you like (be willing) to work?
• What sector would you like to work in?
• What organisation would you really like to work for?
Once you have worked those things out, the next thing you need to do is find that perfect position. But where do you find job information?

State based papers (for example the West Australian has job information listings on Wednesday’s and Saturday’s), Local or community papers; National papers – for example – The Australian all contain job listings, and an intensive read of these pages will provide many opportunities.
A word of caution – be an avid reader of the small print – sometimes the position title may not seem to be the one that you would ever consider to be related to the library and records management industry. Therefore check departments, where will the job be based? Which section? Also check the list of duties – some administrative staff are also expected to manage the library and records section – especially in small to medium sized businesses.

Do not limit your reading to the job section – the business sections also contain useful information that may lead to new job opportunities– are new companies moving into the area? If they are then chances are excellent that they will need new staff, as not all present employees will relocate. Are companies merging or being taken over? Again, new staff may be required, as not all existing staff will remain with the new entity.

Every week Information Enterprises sends out a list of potential jobs abstracted from the local papers – mainly The West Australian and Community papers. If you would like to be included in this weekly email, please send an email to with subscribe job information in the subject line, and we will add you to the distribution list. Alternatively – become a member of the list servs (available through the Records Management Association of Australasia, Australian Society of Archivists, AliaWest or WAIN) details follow.

Employment agencies:
These can be niche specialist agencies such as Information Enterprises Australia (IEA) or One Umbrella (now Candle), or generalist agencies such as Zenith Management, Kelly’s or Drake. There are advantages and disadvantages for registering with both kinds of agency. Some generalist agencies are listed on government and/or large organisational preferred supplier lists, whereas smaller agencies may not be. If you do have specialist skills and abilities and you decide to register with a generalist agency, chances are good that you will find work through them. However, the downside is that some generalist agencies may not appreciate the finer points of what a job may entail, they may be vague on details, and you may find yourself not being paid the correct rate for the job that you are being asked to do. However, if you have kept an eye on the job market and know what a particular position may be worth, you may be able to negotiate. However, when doing so – please remember that you rarely get paid for holidays and days off sick, so these calculations should be taken into consideration when negotiating your hourly rate.

Online job boards –
If you have access to the Internet (you can book some time on your local public library’s Internet if you don’t have one at home), there are a number of specific job search sites that have vacancies. 

Site Publisher Unique Browsers Page Impressions Frequency
 SEEK 1,973,083 78,572,903 2.86
 Fairfax Digital 1,033,310 22,793,231 2.04
 News Interactive 744,640 17,428,806 2.02
Australian Government 631,530 41,477,681 2.71
 Australian Government 76,923 1,377,070 1.55
Victorian Government 37,311 119,736 1.79
 Manpower Australia 36,152 320,565 1.27
Jobnet 27,111 628,612 1.16
Australian Government 11,257 161,289 1.16

NB: For those of you who are looking for work within the West Australian Public Sector you may also wish to go to
Unique Browsers: The number of browsers visiting a web site within a designated reporting period – in this case – 01/01/06 – 31/01/06. A browser is identified by a unique cookie associated with that browser. A browser may equate to multiple users of the same machine. Alternatively an individual utilising several different machines will equate to multiple browsers.
Page Impressions: The total number of web pages viewed by all users within the period selected. An impression is recorded each time a page is displayed in a browser window.
Frequency: The average number of times a unique browser visits the site within the reporting period.
Source: Nielson/Net Ratings Market Intelligence Employment, Domestic Traffic for audited sites.

E-lists –
Most professional organisations will have an e-list, or discussion list that can be used to advertise positions. For the library / records / information management fields the following web sites and /or discussion lists are well worth subscribing to:
• Australian Computer Society (ACS) –
• Australian Institute of Management (AIM) –
• Australian Library & Information Association (ALIA) –
• Australian Society of Archivists (ASA) –
• Institute for Information Management (IIM) –
• Intersector (Government jobs WA) –
• Records Management Association of Australasia (RMAA) –
• West Australian Information Network (WAIN) – People working in the library and information profession in Western Australia should subscribe to WAIN (Western Australian Information Network). WAIN is intended to facilitate the dissemination of information to members of the profession (including job vacancies), and to provide a forum for the discussion of important issues. You can subscribe to WAIN by sending an e-mail message to: with the following message in the body of the mail: SUBSCRIBE WAIN yourfirstname yourlastname. Mail sent to the list should be addressed to Peter Green is the creator and moderator of this list. Students who subscribe to this list using their student accounts should remember to unsubscribe when their course is complete; otherwise Peter is bombarded with bounced mail. To unsubscribe, send a message to with the message ‘unsubscribe wain’. Your name is not required

You will need regular access to an electronic mail (e-mail) account to utilise these services, (with the exception of the Government job boards). If you do not have your own Internet Service Provider (ISP) you can register with many of the free services that are available. For example, has gmail; and are other well known providers. However, when registering for your “name” please remember that you are dealing with professional organisation(s) so your email name should be “professional” in nature. A standard format is firstname.lastname@ or lastname.firstname@. Sign up to these services is free; the benefit of course is that you can log onto your account from any computer that has Internet access. You should also read the fine print, for instance hotmail removes your access after one month if you have not logged on during this time.

Once you are registered on an e-discussion list, interested parties (including yourself) can make postings to it, and has included personal requests for work (however, I am not sure how well these work, and you may have to try it and see). You will receive a steady stream of industry related information throughout the day (or some lists do provide a daily digest), as well as some job advertisements, but you will only receive messages after you have registered (it is not retrospective). As a matter of interest though, the Records Management Association of Australasia does have an archive of postings which can be searched – worth doing for a couple of days prior to your joining the list as your perfect job may have been listed.
Word of mouth and networks:

Both word of mouth and networks (personal as well as networking events) are an excellent way to find work. Remember though that your “fame” can precede you, so please make sure you make a good impression at industry events. Always dress appropriately for the occasion and be prepared to talk to lots of people. However, don’t use the opportunity to just dish out your business card, networking is a two-way street, and you should listen as well as speak. Don’t be remembered for being the person who drank too much and monopolised the conversation by telling everyone how bad your previous employer was. The person who may be listening may not actually be the person you were talking to, and it may be this person who had the job that was on offer.
Internal notice boards:

Are you reasonably happy where you are, but looking for a new challenge? Internal notice boards, Intranets and Company newsletters are a great way to see if there are any internal positions/promotions available. Whilst jobs have to be advertised (by law), it doesn’t say where these positions have to be advertised.
Organisational websites:

As we have already mentioned, if you have always wanted to work for a particular organisation, it is worth checking the organisational website for job vacancies, and follow this with a speculative letter and CV as they may be able to keep your information on file.

This has been excerpted from IEA’s book “The first 4 minutes: Understanding the selection and Interview Process” 2nd edition, 2006, which is now available.

A Thought to Ponder
“You may believe that you are responsible for what you do, but not for what you think. The truth is that you are responsible for what you think, because it is only at this level that you can exercise choice. What you do comes from what you think.”
A Course in Miracles