In order to help control costs to the operating budget, Furman is implementing a review process administered by the Dean’s office to evaluate the immediate need for refilling vacated faculty positions.

The recruitment process includes the following steps:
  1. Once a position has been approved by the Dean, the Chair should meet with the departmental faculty and determine the qualifications and talents that the department desires in its new faculty member.  From this discussion an appropriate position announcement should be developed.

    The Dean, as well as the Assistant Vice President for Human Resources, must approve any advertisement for new faculty.  The Human Resources AVP will determine whether the advertisement meets legal requirements and establish a procedure for receiving applicants’ responses.  If you anticipate hiring a non-US citizen through one of your searches, it is imperative that you have a PRINT copy of the job posting from a national publication.

    Most academic disciplines have bulletin boards or on-line services that publish job lists.  Use them whenever possible; avoid advertising in publications that charge excessive fees.

  2. As applications are received, correspondence should be maintained with the candidates at each stage of the search to keep them informed of the search process and progress.  Chairs will need to reply to applicants who are of no interest.

  3. The Chair should establish a procedure for the departmental faculty’s regular involvement in the evaluation of the candidates.

    Depending on the size of the department, a subset of department members may be selected to function as the search committee.  This subcommittee will review applications and make recommendations to the department at large.  However, all department members should have access to all of the applications.  Although dividing the reading assignments among the committee members might mean less work for each member, ideally all members of the search committee should review all applications.  Departments may find it helpful to select a senior non-departmental faculty colleague to serve on the search committee or at least participate in the campus interview of the finalists. This non-departmental perspective may have greater value for small departments.

    Search committee members are held accountable for the committee’s selection decisions.  As such, they are expected to actively participate in each step of the review process.  Minimally, all department members should participate in the review of the application materials.

  4. The first step of the screening process is called the “paper review.”  During this process, search committee members assess whether applicants have the minimum qualifications required for the position. Once the applicants have been vetted against the standards, committee members are likely to rank applicants based on preferred qualifications or the strengths of their experience. Early in the process this ranking may take the form of categories (e.g., 3 = definitely would like to consider as a candidate, 2 = OK, somewhat interested in considering, 1 = not interested, do not consider).  After all faculty participating in the search process have made their rankings, a meeting should be held to discuss the viable candidates and to establish a consensus ranking of those candidates.

  5. Every effort must be made to learn more about the candidates.  Individual telephone interviews, either conducted by the Chair or a designated faculty member or group teleconference interviews, should be conducted to learn as much as possible about the candidates’ interest in the position and if they appear to be a good match for the department’s needs and a good fit for the institution.  The most effective sequence might be an individual call first to gauge the candidate’s interest and then a conference call that enables the departmental faculty to participate. Professional organizations in some disciplines organize job fairs at national conference meetings. Preliminary interviews can be conducted at these events in addition to or instead of phone interviews.

  6. Concurrent with the process of selecting the top candidates to be offered an invitation for campus interviews, calls to candidates’ references should be made to learn more about the candidates.  These calls are important and will enable the department to learn more about the candidate than what typically is included in a letter of recommendation.

  7. Contact with any candidate or their references should be a coordinated effort by designated members of the search committee.  Independent communication with candidates or their references is inappropriate and can be problematic.

  8. Once the department has identified the candidates it wishes to bring to campus, the recruitment procedures issued by the Dean of the Faculty should be carefully followed.

    • Do not invite candidates for interviews without the Dean’s approval. Forward a copy of the candidates’ CVs to the Dean. To the extent minority status and gender can be determined, forward also to the Dean the highest rated female or minority if one is not among the finalists. This should include a brief explanation as to why this individual does not qualify as a finalist.
    • In most cases, three on-campus interviews will be permitted. For a full-time one-year appointment, only one person will be interviewed.
    • If air travel is necessary, reservations should be made by the candidates. They should work with the Chair regarding travel schedules and locate the lowest fare. If a situation warrants other consideration about this process, please contact the Dean’s office.
    • The Dean’s office will reimburse meals with job candidates on the following basis: Breakfast should not exceed $8 per person and lunch $12 per person. Typically, one or, at most, a small group of faculty would accompany candidates to breakfast or lunch. For an evening meal, reimbursement is limited to $45 per person or $180 total, for 3 faculty members and the candidate. If the candidate must stay over a second night, reimbursement will be permitted for one faculty member of the department to have dinner with the candidate following the limits stated above.
    • Expense reimbursement requests, including the receipts and appropriate forms, should be submitted to Michelle Shaw in the Dean’s office. Candidates will be reimbursed for travel expenses as soon as possible after the Dean’s office receives a copy of their receipts and ticket/invoices, submitted with a completed check request form.
    • Lodging arrangements can be made by the Chair, or someone that the Chair designates. Furman’s negotiated discounted hotel rates brochure can be found on the MyFurman site, under Employee Forms/Travel/Brochure. Charges for lodging should be made to the departmental TAP card. (Contact Michelle Shaw in the Dean’s Office to have charges transferred to the appropriate account.) The Dean’s budget will cover up to $120 per night for hotel expenses. Any remaining amount will be covered by the department. The Furman apartment in North Village or guest apartment at the Vinings may be available. Reservations should be made through the Housing office (294-2092).
    • If recruitment is occurring at a conference, typically two faculty members of a department will recruit. Additional faculty may be permitted if needed and if funding resources are available.  Unless there are extraordinary circumstances, the use of a suite for interviews is not permitted.
    • Everyone in the department should be made aware of the limits on meals and lodging costs.
    The on-campus interview should include 1)  meeting at the outset with the departmental Chair 2) meeting with all members of the department either in individual or joint sessions 3) meeting with the Dean as described in the “Recruitment Procedures*” 4) meeting with student majors 5) meeting with non-departmental faculty 6) making a research presentation 7) teaching a class 8)  touring the facilities and campus 9) learning about employee benefits by meeting with a Human Resources staff member and 10) meeting with the Chair for an exit interview. Some departments combine 6 and 7 above by asking candidates to present their research at a level that an advanced undergraduate student can understand.

  9. A well-developed interview process can reveal a great deal about a candidate.  Rather than “winging it” when a candidate arrives, committees are advised to develop a set of interview questions or topics for discussion in advance.

    A consistent process enables a committee to effectively evaluate one candidate against another.  By developing similar campus interview activities (e.g. meetings with various interested groups, class presentations, interactions with non-departmental faculty, types of interview questions), it will be easier to compare candidates and easier to defend hiring decisions.
When developing questions, use the position description as a guide.  Questions should be related to the work described in the position description and the qualifications required to be effective in the role.

If you believe an interview with the President would be critical to the successful recruitment of the candidate, check with the Dean for approval.

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