Although employment of librarians is expected to grow only as much as 8 percent through 2014, job opportunities are expected to be good because a large number of librarians are expected to retire in the coming decade.More than three in five librarians are aged forty-five or older and will become eligible for retirement in the next ten years, which will result in numerous job openings. Also, the number of people going into this profession has fallen in recent years, resulting in more jobs than applicants in some cases.
Growth in the number of librarians will be limited by government budget constraints and the increasing use of computerized information storage and retrieval systems. Both will result in the hiring of fewer librarians and the replacement of some with less costly library technicians and assistants. Computerized systems make cataloguing easier, allowing library technicians to perform the work. In addition, many libraries are equipped for users to access library computers directly from their homes or offices, allowing them to bypass librarians altogether and conduct research on their own. However, librarians will still be needed to manage staff, help users develop database-searching techniques,
address complicated reference requests, and define users’ needs.
Jobs for librarians outside traditional settings are expected to show the fastest growth. Nontraditional librarian jobs include working as information brokers and working for private corporations, nonprofit organizations, and consulting firms. Many companies are turning to librarians because of their research and organizational skills and their knowledge of computer databases and library automation systems. Librarians can review vast amounts of information and analyze, evaluate, and organize it according to a company’s specific needs. They are also hired by organizations to set up information on the Internet. Those working in these settings may be classified as systems analysts, database specialists and trainers, Web developers, or local area network (LAN) coordinators.
Archivists can expect keen competition for positions because qualified applicants generally outnumber job openings.Graduates with highly specialized training, such as master’s degrees in both library science and history, with a concentration in archives or records management and extensive computer skills, should have the best opportunities.
Employment of archivists is expected to grow between 9 and 17 percent through 2014, as information increases and public and private organizations emphasize establishing archives and organizing records. Additional demand will be generated by strong public and private support for and interest in museums.However, museums and other cultural institutions can be subject to cuts in funding during recessions or periods of budget tightening, reducing demand for these workers. Although the rate of turnover among archivists is relatively low, the need to replace workers who
leave the occupation or stop working will create some additional job openings.