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Policy and Procedures for Recruitment and Hiring of Unclassified Personnel
The following procedures outline the steps to fill an unclassified position. These steps should be reviewed and followed by the chair of the search committee. It is also the responsibility of the chair of the search committee to discuss these procedures with the members of the search committee and other individuals who are involved in the recruitment process.
All individuals in the recruitment and hiring process must cooperate with the University’s commitment to equal opportunity and understand that hiring decisions will be made without regard to race, sex, religion, age, national origin, disability or veteran’s status.
These procedures should be followed when filling both faculty and unclassified administrative positions. As most unclassified recruitment involves faculty positions, the authorizing vice president referred to in the following procedures is the vice president for academic affairs. If the unclassified administrative vacancy is not in the Division of Academic Affairs, please work with the appropriate vice president.
The Office of Human Resources will provide assistance in filling unclassified administrative positions. The Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs will provide assistance in filling faculty positions.
No faculty search may begin until approval by the vice president for academic affairs has been given to the dean to fill a vacancy or to recruit for a new faculty position. Position justification must be provided to the vice president for academic affairs by the dean.
The vice president in the area of the vacancy designates the appropriate dean as the person responsible for ensuring that search committee chairs and hiring officers adhere to the procedural requirements outlined in this document. The vice president should make it clear to search committee chairs and hiring officers that the process and procedures outlined for hiring unclassified personnel are designed to enable the recruitment and hire of the best qualified candidate, to demonstrate the University’s commitment to equal employment opportunity, and to ensure that unlawful discrimination in any form does not occur. The assistant director in the Office of Human Resources acts as the equal employment opportunity (EEO) representative in this process and is available for consultation on matters regarding the University’s equal employment opportunity program. The EEO representative will serve as technical review advisor at specific times in the process to assist in achieving the goal of equal employment opportunity for all.
When preparing materials for a faculty search, all individuals involved must keep in mind the standards for faculty competence established by accrediting bodies, the State of South Carolina, professional disciplines, and the institution. Minimum employment qualifications for faculty must be consistent with the requirements as outlined in the Principles of Accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and the Winthrop University Faculty Manual.
In its guidelines on faculty credentials, SACS outlines the general requirements for employing faculty:
The institution employs competent faculty members qualified to accomplish the mission and goals of the institution. When determining acceptable qualifications of its faculty, an institution gives primary consideration to the highest earned degree in the discipline. The institution also considers competence, effectiveness, and capacity, including, as appropriate, undergraduate and graduate degrees, related work experiences in the field, professional licensure and certifications, honors and awards, continuous documented excellence in teaching, or other demonstrated competencies and achievements that contribute to effective teaching and student learning outcomes. For all cases, the institution is responsible for justifying and documenting the qualifications of its faculty.
(http://sacscoc.org/pdf/081705/faculty%20credentials.pdf; see also Comprehensive Standard 3.7.1, SACS Principles of Accreditation)
According to the Winthrop University Faculty Manual, the following criteria regarding faculty rank should be used, along with guidelines from disciplinary professional organizations (MLA, NCATE, etc.):
Academic rank is predicated on academic preparation, teaching ability, personal qualifications, professional services, scholarship, concern for advising and counseling students, and other related factors.
Instructor. Each nominee for appointment to the rank of instructor is expected to have earned the master's degree and to offer evidence or promise of competence in teaching and professional service. Instructors are appointed for a term of one year only, but appointment to additional one-year terms is permitted. Instructors are not eligible for tenure. Comparable academic preparation and/or professional achievement appropriate to the field may be substituted for the master's degree.
Assistant Professor. Each nominee for appointment or promotion to the rank of assistant professor is expected to hold an earned doctoral or appropriate terminal degree and to offer evidence of potential in teaching, scholarship, and professional service. Faculty in this rank are eligible for tenure if in a tenure track appointment. Comparable academic preparation and/or professional achievement appropriate to the field may be substituted for the appropriate terminal degree.
Associate Professor. In addition to the criteria for assistant professor, each nominee for appointment or promotion to the rank of associate professor, a senior rank in the faculty, is expected to hold a terminal degree, evidence of effective teaching, productive scholarship and professional involvement, and appropriate professional service and academic responsibility. Faculty in this rank are eligible for tenure if in a tenure track appointment. At time of hire, in exceptional cases, comparable academic preparation and/or professional achievement appropriate to the field may be substituted for the appropriate terminal degree.
Professor. In addition to the criteria for associate professor, each nominee for appointment or promotion to the rank of professor, the highest rank in the faculty, is expected to hold a terminal degree, offer evidence beyond that requisite for other ranks, of maturity and leadership, as well as superiority in teaching, scholarship, and professional involvement, and professional service and academic responsibility. Faculty in this rank are eligible for tenure if in a tenure track appointment. At time of hire, in exceptional cases, comparable academic preparation and/or professional achievement appropriate to the field may be substituted for the appropriate terminal degree. (www.winthrop.edu/uploadedFiles/FacultyManual.pdf)
STAGE I -- APPROVAL PAPERWORK
The chair of the search committee works with the appropriate dean’s office to obtain forms and answers to search-related questions. A copy of the document entitled Search Committees: A Toolkit (published by the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources [CUPA-HR]) is available in the appropriate dean’s office to assist search committees in their work.
Additional questions regarding policies and procedures for the faculty/unclassified search should be directed to the coordinator of personnel and budgets for academic affairs in the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
The chair of the search committee should also contact the EEO representative in the Office of Human Resources to determine if the position is currently underutilized in minorities or females. If the position being filled is underutilized in minorities or females, the chair of the search committee and the EEO representative will discuss strategies to increase the number of minority and female applicants in the applicant pool. Please call the EEO representative with any questions related to equal employment opportunity.
Complete the Request for Faculty/Unclassified Position form (Exhibit A).
The vacancy announcement format (Exhibit B) is standard for most positions.
Vacancy announcements for deans and vice presidents typically require a recruitment brochure instead of the standard vacancy announcement. The chair of the search committee will work with the appropriate dean’s office and University Relations to produce the recruitment brochure. Wording for the vacancy announcement and advertisement should convey final intent. For example, do not specify that a Ph.D. is required when a candidate who is ABD may be considered; rank should be compatible with appointment, i.e. assistant professor or higher for a tenure track appointment.
Samples of vacancy announcements are available in the appropriate dean’s office. The current Winthrop University Profile is printed on the back of the vacancy announcement in Printing Services; departments do not need to submit the profile
In consultation with the Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs in the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, search committee chairs should determine what type of advertising (print, electronic, etc.) is desirable and what is required by state and federal guidelines.
Search committee chairs should determine if additional advertising in publications, newspapers, listservs, etc. is desirable. When conducting a search to fill a tenure track faculty position that may result in extending an offer to an individual who is not a permanent resident of the United States, we must have a copy of the print ad used in the search. The print ad must have appeared in a national journal or The Chronicle. You may, of course, in addition to placing a print ad in a national journal or The Chronicle, place an advertisement in any other publication, or use the online services of any other publication. The reason for this is that in the immigration process to obtain a permanent resident card, a copy of the print ad, showing the name of the national journal or The Chronicle, and date of publication must be filed with the proper forms. Online advertisements are not acceptable for this process. Please retain copies of the print ad in the search folder. Should you fail to advertise using a print ad, and an individual who is not a permanent resident of the U.S. surfaces as the candidate of choice, you would have to extend the deadline of the search, advertise using a print ad as stated above, and process any additional applications for the position. The same process would apply to what we call “limited searches” where HR posts the vacancy notice on campus and no advertising takes place. You may continue to conduct a “limited search,” but if the candidate of choice is not a permanent resident of the U.S., you will then have to follow the guidelines as stated above. Under circumstances where the vacant position classification has been defined as being “underutilized” by minorities or females, the EEO representative in the Office of Human Resources can assist in determining appropriate recruitment sources to achieve the highest possibility of attracting applicants in the underutilized area.
Complete the advertisement using wording that is consistent with the information provided in the vacancy announcement. Exhibit C refers to samples of advertisements which are available in the appropriate dean’s office. To be included at the end of each advertisement is the acronym EOE.
A copy of the advertisement must be included with the Request for Faculty/Unclassified Position form and vacancy announcement in order to post the position. Copies of all ads posted should be kept in the appropriate dean's office. If no advertisement is used, write “no ad” at the top of the form.
After completing steps 1 through 4, send the Request for Faculty/Unclassified Position, vacancy announcement and advertisement to Academic Affairs for approval by the vice president for academic affairs.
Any required revision(s) to the documents will be conveyed to the dean or chair of the search committee. Corrected copy will be provided to the coordinator of personnel and budgets for academic affairs.
The Office of the Vice President of Academic Affairs will obtain the necessary approvals for the remainder of this portion of the process. The dean will be informed once approvals are in place so that the search may continue. Copies of the paperwork will be sent to the dean and Office of Human Resources.
At this juncture, the vacancy announcement must be sent as an e-mail attachment to the Office of Human Resources. HR will then communicate with Printing Services regarding the printing of the vacancy announcement.
After receiving approval to post the position, the chair of the search committee (or designee) will, if necessary, place the advertisement in the appropriate publications, newspapers, listservs, etc. Please refer to Step 4 in this section regarding information on whether or not position must be advertised in a national publication. The advertisements are funded by the hiring department or the appropriate dean’s office.
Advertisements cannot be altered from the original wording and format that was included in the approved paperwork. Any changes should be routed and approved by the appropriate dean’s office, Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Office of Human Resources. Questions regarding the use of a procurement card or a P.O. number to pay for the advertisement should be directed to the Purchasing Department.
The Office of Human Resources will forward the completed vacancy announcements to the appropriate hiring department for distribution. The Office of Human Resources will also mail the vacancy announcements to all academic units on campus as well as the addresses included on the EEO recruitment list.
The chair of the search committee should establish a job vacancy folder for the search. Since the amount of information submitted by candidates for unclassified and faculty positions can be significant, individual candidate folders should be established to include all information submitted by that candidate. See Stage IV, Step 4 for records retention requirements.
Note: The completed applicant data record form is
not added to the file until after the recruitment and hiring process is
STAGE II -- CONDUCTING THE SEARCH
The chair of the search committee (or designee) should organize materials to send to individuals expressing interest in the position. When a letter of interest is received, the chair of the search (or designee) sends a letter (Exhibit D) to all applicants enclosing the following:
The application forms and data record are also available at http://www.winthrop.edu/uploadedFiles/hr/Forms/Faculty_Application.pdf.
A supply of applications and applicant data records are available in the Office of Human Resources. These forms are also on Winthrop’s website. Applicants can print the forms and return them by mail to the chair of the search committee.
In a good faith effort to determine demographical data for job applicants, each applicant is provided with an applicant data record form on which the applicant is asked to voluntarily record information regarding race/ethnicity and sex. The information included on the data record forms can in no way be used to make decisions regarding which applicants to interview or hire. It is the responsibility of the search committee chair or hiring officer to ensure that the integrity of this process be maintained and that decisions to interview or hire are made without regard to race, sex, religion, age national origin, disability or veteran’s status. In addition, in an effort to affirm the University’s commitment to being an equal opportunity employer, each applicant is provided a copy of the Equal Employment Opportunity Policy Statement.
After the completed
applications and data records are returned, the administrative specialist
involved in the search should separate the two forms and forward only the
applications to the chair of the search committee or hiring officer. Once a
determination has been made regarding who will be interviewed for the
position, the administrative specialist will then forward the data records
to the chair of the search committee or hiring officer.
Applicant Referral Grids (Exhibit G). Please refer to the following information when completing the Applicant Referral Grids.
Grid I / Pool I
List the names of the candidates chosen for interview. The race and sex data should be listed on the candidates’ Applicant Data Record. If a candidate does not return the Applicant Data Record, leave the race and sex sections blank. Do not try to guess the race or sex of a candidate such as recording “Male” for a candidate with the name John. If the candidate does not choose to disclose the data, do not record any race or sex information.
Complete the “Minimum Training and Experience (MTE)” section by recording a “yes” if the candidate meets the required knowledge, education and experience outlined in the vacancy announcement and advertisement. All candidates included in Grid I should meet the minimum training and experience specified for the position.
Under “Reasons for Selecting Candidate for Interview” section, give the job-related justification or reason for selecting the candidate for interview. The reason should be closely related to the required and preferred knowledge, education and experience listed in the vacancy announcement and advertisement for the position.
Grid I / Pool II
Candidates listed in Pool II should meet all qualifications of the position and will be considered if additional interviews are necessary. Please record the distinction between Pool I and Pool II candidates in the “Reasons for Not Selecting Candidates for Interview at This Time” section of Pool II. There should be a difference between the Pool I and II candidates in order to determine that the Pool I candidates should be interviewed first.
Complete the race, sex and MTE sections in the same manner that was reviewed for Grid I candidates. Candidates included in Grid II may meet the minimum training and experience specified for the position but may not be as strong a candidate as those listed in Grid I.
The statements recorded in the “Reasons for Not Referring Applicant for Interview” section should list reasons that are job-related. The grid system was implemented as a resource for the University to use to confidently uphold its commitment to equal employment opportunity and to defend any claims of unlawful discrimination in the interviewing and hiring process for unclassified personnel. Search committee chairs and hiring officers should complete the grids using wording that is specific with regard to job requirements or preferred qualifications as outlined on the job vacancy announcement. They can also specify undesirable behavior observed during an interview, or specific comments made during an interview. The non-selection reasons should be quantifiable in comparison to the reasons listed for those who were selected for interview or hire. Information received through third parties or hearsay and that cannot be substantiated or included in the official reference check process cannot be used as a non-selection reason.
Note: Some search committees choose to number the required and preferred qualifications listed on the vacancy announcement. The committee then lists a number as the reason why a candidate was not chosen for interview. In other words, if a Ph.D. is required, this requirement may be given the number 1. Instead of stating that the candidate did not have a Ph.D. as the reason why the candidate was not interviewed, the chair of the search committee would simply list 1 as the reason.
Note: Search committee members need to discuss how to handle incomplete application materials early in the process. If an applicant does not return all or part of the requested materials, will the search committee record a question mark in the “MTE” section and state that qualifications cannot be determined by materials on hand in the “Reasons for Not Referring Applicant for Interview” section? If applicants with incomplete application materials are not to be considered for the position, be consistent. Do not consider one candidate with missing materials and neglect to consider other candidates in the same situation.
If additional copies are made to accommodate the number of applicants in Grid II, each sheet must be initialed.
If it is necessary to interview more than two candidates, prior approval must be obtained from the vice president. If the search is not successful and a request is made for a second search, the hiring department may be asked to share in the cost of the additional search.
The chair of the search committee forwards Grids I and II and the candidate folders for each individual selected for interview as listed in Pool I on Grid I to the EEO representative in the Office of Human Resources. The EEO representative reviews the information listed on the grids to ensure that selection to interview and non-selection reasons are made without regard to race, sex, religion, age, national origin, disability or veteran’s status. The EEO representative will contact the appropriate search committee chair, dean and/or vice president with any questions or concerns regarding the interview selection process.
A completed Approval for Interview and Hire form (Exhibit H) should be stapled to the front of the folder, with the top section of the form completed to request permission to interview the candidate. Each folder must contain a vitae and, if possible, an unofficial or official proof of highest degree. Any additional material that is cumbersome may be placed in a container (e.g. manila envelope, plastic folder) and bound with a rubber band behind the folder. The folders are then forwarded to the vice president for academic affairs for approval and returned to the dean or chair of the search committee along with informational packets to be distributed to candidates approved for interview.
The chair of the search committee (or designee) sends a letter (Exhibit I) to all applicants not selected for further review or consideration.
Note: The chair of the
search committee may choose to send letters to applicants who do not meet or
minimally meet the qualifications of the position at this time. Other
applicants (usually listed on Grid II) who meet all qualifications but are
not as strong as the candidates listed on Grid I may be considered if the
interview process does not produce a top candidate. This being a
possibility, a Grid II applicant may move to Grid I after the interview
process. This change is less awkward if the candidate has not received
a rejection letter at this point in the process.
STAGE III -- INTERVIEWING AND HIRING THE CANDIDATE
While paperwork requirements for the interviewing and hiring process are the same for unclassified and faculty vacancies, the following procedural information is set forth by the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and refers to faculty hiring. The various vice presidential units may have different procedural requirements regarding the process for hiring unclassified personnel than those described below. Hiring officers for unclassified vacancies are responsible for understanding the procedural requirements of the respective vice president with regard to interviewing and hiring.
Prior to scheduling interviews with candidates, the dean should discuss the salary range for the position with the vice president for academic affairs.
The vice president for academic affairs should be scheduled to meet each tenure track or multi-year candidate brought to campus for interview. If the vice president’s schedule permits, candidates for faculty positions at the non-tenured (instructor) level will be interviewed. A copy of the itinerary must be provided to the vice president for academic affairs prior to the scheduled interview.
If the candidate is being considered for the position of dean or vice president for academic affairs, the chair of the search committee should contact the Office of the President to schedule an appointment. The president’s appointment with the candidate is to be on the calendar before other itinerary arrangements are made.
Note: If filling a higher level position, be advised that information about the final candidates may be requested from and released by Winthrop University under the Freedom of Information Act. If you receive such a request, please refer the matter to the vice president for academic affairs.
Recruitment dollars are administered by the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and funds are limited. These funds cover travel, lodging and meals for the candidate, as well as reimbursement for mileage and parking to a faculty member for transporting the candidate to and/or from the airport. A Travel Reimbursement form and receipts(s) must be submitted to the coordinator of personnel and budgets for academic affairs for approval. Candidates are brought to campus at the state’s expense, using state guidelines regarding reimbursement for expenditures. Any excess of state limits is to be entered on a form which is attached to the Travel Reimbursement form. The forms should show the appropriate information for the candidate as well as the faculty position for which the reimbursement is requested. Travel arrangements for the candidates should be made well enough in advance to secure the most reasonable fares available.
Advertising expenses are to be covered by the hiring department.
The chair of the search committee extends invitations for interviews and explains policies regarding reimbursement for interviewing expenses. Prior to campus interview, candidates should receive the following materials:
· Vision of Distinction statement or similar statement;
· Latest edition of the Winthrop Magazine;
· Latest edition of FYI;
· List of Benefits; and
· Campus Map
These packets are available through the coordinator of personnel and budgets for academic affairs in the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
For those candidates invited to campus for interview, the search committee chair will provide background check consent forms which are to be filled out and signed. These forms are to be held by the search committee chair until decision is made as to which candidate will be extended the verbal offer. The form is then given to the coordinator of personnel and budgets for processing. At the time the verbal offer is extended, the candidate is to be informed that such offer is pending a clear background check. The letter of offer will not be issued without a clear background check, or a statement inserted in the letter of offer that the appointment is extended pending receipt of a clear background check report.
If an approved candidate for interview subsequently withdraws from consideration, please notify the coordinator of personnel and budgets for academic affairs.
All Winthrop employees involved in the search process should understand appropriate protocols for conducting interviews. CUPA-HR’s Interview Guide: A Resource for Supervisors and Others Involved in the Selection Process is available to committees for guidance, as well as documents developed by professional organizations associated with academic disciplines.
Following interviews, hiring recommendations for all interviewed candidates are made and recorded on the Approval for Interview and Hire form that is stapled to the front of the candidate’s file. The reason(s) for hiring should be recorded in item A for the candidate being recommended for hire and in item B for all interviewed candidates not recommended for hire. All selection and non-selection reasons must be made without regard to race, sex, religion, age, national origin, disability or veteran’s status. Also under Item A, record other details that need to be included in the letter of offer (i.e. credit toward the probationary period for tenure, time limitation on completion of degree requirements, etc.). Arrangements between the dean, candidate and vice president for academic affairs will not be included in the letter of offer unless they are entered on this form.
Please make sure that an official transcript of highest degree is in the selected candidate’s folder. If the official transcript is not on hand, confirmation by the Office of the Registrar where the candidate received highest degree is necessary. Please record the date of the phone call, name of the individual who provided the confirmation and date of the conferral of degree for unofficial verifications in the file. The letter of offer will not be issued without verification of highest degree. If official proof is not on file once the candidate has signed the letter of offer, such proof must be requested of the candidate by the chair of the search committee or the appropriate dean, and a copy must be provided to the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Employment may not begin without official proof of highest degree.
The dean sends the candidates’ folders to the EEO representative who reviews the reason for selection or non-selection indicated on the Approval for Interview and Hire forms. Upon approval of the reasons, the EEO representative forwards the folders to the vice president for academic affairs. Upon approval by the vice president for academic affairs, the appropriate dean is notified. Salary and other specific terms of employment are determined by the vice president for academic affairs and the dean, based on the candidate’s qualifications and experience.
The dean will make the verbal offer to the candidate (such offer pending a clear background check). When the verbal offer is accepted, the dean notifies the coordinator of personnel and budgets for academic affairs who will prepare a letter of offer for the president’s signature. As stated above, the letter of offer is prepared only with proof of highest degree on file, and receipt of a clear background check. If the verbal offer is rejected, the chair of the search committee revises the Approval to Interview and Hire form and the Applicant Referral Grids to offer the position to another acceptable candidate or to request additional interviews.
If the offer is rejected by all acceptable candidates who are interviewed, the chair of the search committee may revise the Approval for Interview and Hire form and the Applicant Referral Grids to request additional interviews as outlined in the previous steps.
For reporting purposes, it is important to record if a candidate withdraws from consideration. If this is the case, enter “withdrew” or “W/D” beside the candidate’s name on Grid I. Also specify if the candidate withdrew before or after the interview process by recording “interviewed” in the margin beside the candidate’s name. If it is known, the reason for withdrawal should be listed.
If the chair of the search committee decides to cancel the search, he or she must inform the vice president for academic affairs, the coordinator of personnel and budgets for academic affairs and the EEO representative.
When the candidate’s
written acceptance is received, a copy is sent by the coordinator of
personnel and budgets for academic affairs to the appropriate dean,
department chair, the Office of Human Resources and the Budget Office. The
dean (or designee) initiates an electronic Personnel Action Form (e-PAF). The
e-PAF is sent to the Budget Office for approval prior to
being signed by the Vice President for
After approval by the Vice President for Academic
Affairs, the e-PAF is then
sent to the Office of Human Resources for review and processing and
by the President.
STAGE IV -- COMPLETING THE HIRING PROCESS
The chair of the search committee (or designee) sends letters to candidates who were interviewed but not offered the position (Exhibit K). At this time, letters are also sent to candidates who were still under consideration.
The dossier of the candidate who is hired for the position should remain in the office of the dean for academic positions and forwarded to the Office of Human Resources for non-academic positions. The original Winthrop application form must be forwarded to HR. A copy of the application form should be placed in the successful candidate’s folder.
After the new employee
is hired, the chair of the search committee or appropriate dean advises the
employee to contact the Office of Human Resources to discuss the completion
of personnel paperwork. Before an employee can be paid or be placed on the
system for benefits, the employee must complete a prospective employee
certification form as required by state law and a form I-9 as required by
federal immigration law. Both forms must be completed and returned to the
Office of Human Resources within three days of the new employee’s start date
to comply with the law and avoid delay in processing payroll checks.
After the recruitment and hiring process is completed the following information should be retained in the job vacancy folder:
· completed Request for Faculty/Unclassified Position form;
· vacancy announcement;
· copies of advertisements indicating the publication in which the ad was placed;
· completed applicant referral grids;
· completed Approval for Interview and Hire forms for each candidate interviewed and for the candidate recommended for hire;
· completed applicant data record forms.
All job vacancy/search information must be kept on file for two years from the date of hire (start date) of the successful candidate. The job vacancy/search files may be retained in the respective dean’s/vice president’s office or the files may be forwarded to the Office of Human Resources for storage. The dean/vice president or HR will be responsible for locating the files should the need arise. Procedures for destroying state personnel records are established in the SC State Division of Archives and Records Management. See the publication “General Records Retention Schedule for State Colleges and Universities” for specific procedures for destroying job search files.