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Welcome to the ultimate resource page for supervisors and search and screen committee members recruiting for a vacant position at UW Oshkosh! We hope to help this process run as smooth as possible providing you with the necessary tips and resources throughout your search.
Looking to replace or fill a new position? Here’s what you need to do:
- Review the steps in the recruitment flow: Click here to review a recruitment process overview.
- Use the standard job description (SJD) library located HERE to review all of our titles and job descriptions. When determining a title, the employee should be doing all the responsibilities listed.
- Use our recruitment process checklist to keep track of the different hiring processes happening in your area.
- University Staff recruitments: Decide which type of recruitment process you will use. Hiring supervisors have the option to use our traditional recruitment process or use the University Staff Alternative Search Process. Details on our alternative process can be found HERE.
- Create your job posting in PageUp: Labeled in PageUp as “job requisition,” use this form to request a position and to build your external job posting that will be advertised on the careers website for candidates to apply.
PageUp Training Manuals
With the implementation of our applicant tracking system, PageUp, we want to make sure you feel comfortable using the system. Check the events section on the left side of this page for PageUp training sessions hosted by the Office of Human Resources or call a recruiter with any questions (920-424-1166). See below for the necessary PageUp training manuals:
- Requesting and Posting a Position in PageUp
- Search and Screen Process in PageUp
- Rehire Process in PageUp (Quick Step-by-Step Overview)
- Temporary Employment Recruitment Process (Overview of Temporary Employment)
- Requesting a Waiver of Recruitment
- Title Change Request (still being created)
- Offer and Onboarding Process in PageUp
Search and Screen Committee Resources
Helpful guides for your role in the recruitment process:
Search Chair Quick Tips Guide
Open Meetings Law
All Search and Screen committee meetings are subject to the Open Meetings Law 19.85 (1) (c).
If you receive a request for documentation from a search, contact the University’s Custodian of Public Records, Robert Roberts, at email@example.com.
What is the difference between and internal and external search? An internal search is one where only internal candidates (those currently employed at UW Oshkosh) are considered for the position. An external search considers both internal candidates and external candidates.
Can a candidate be reimbursed for traveling during the recruitment process? Yes; candidates may be offered reimbursement for their travel expenses throughout the recruitment process, however, if offered to one, this needs to be offered to all candidates. For more information on the travel reimbursement process, please reference this guide.
What are the polices relating search and screen committees for limited appointments and academic staff positions? Please reference this entry in the policy directory regarding search and screen information for limited and academic staff appointments.
Advertising & Focused Outreach
The Office of Human Resources has solidified unlimited job posting contracts with the vendors listed below. Please know that your department will not be financially responsible for posting on these particular websites due to a partially centralized advertising budget solely applicable to these vendors.
Additional outreach is highly encouraged and a best practice. Departments may advertise their positions on niche job boards, journals, list serves, etc. Additional advertisements placed will need to be paid for and posted by the hiring department and documentation must be uploaded to the documents tab of job requisition.
The following is a list of diversity-targeted job advertising resources in higher education and related publications, websites, associations, organizations professional societies that serve diverse constituents and publish diverse content. This listing is just a starting place and is not all-inclusive. If you would like to discuss some advertising strategies specific to the position you are looking to fill, please call our office and we would be happy to go over some resources with you.
General Diversity Outreach Resources
The recruitment process is often the first experience an applicant has with the university. Being properly prepared for your phone interviews and on campus interviews is an integral contributor of your candidates having a positive application process. We strongly encourage each search and screen committee member and hiring supervisors to review the interviewing guides provided below to be as prepared as possible for your recruitment process:
- Interviewing Guide (Tips and Advice): New to being on the employer’s side of the interview? Explore the fine details of interviewing with some helpful tips.
- Interview Question Bank: An essential guide to help your search and screen committee establish phone screen and onsite interview questions. If you would like the recruitment team to look over your interview questions to make sure they are compliant, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Interview Bias Guide: The Office of Human Resources does not condone any type of discrimination of our applicants.
The following table has been added for your convenience and summarizes inappropriate questions for potential employees. As a reminder, ALL applicants interviewed for a position must be asked the SAME questions.
|Subject||Should NOT Ask|
|Address||Inquiry into foreign address that would indicate national origin. Names or relationships of persons with whom applicant resides. Whether applicant rents or owns a home.|
|Age||Applicant to state age or date of birth or to provide proof of age. (This information can be obtained after hire.)|
|Arrests||About arrests because the person is not judged guilty by an arrest.|
|Birthplace/National Origin||Ancestry/birth place of applicant or spouse, parents or other relatives.|
|Citizenship||Whether the individual is a U.S. citizen, as a basis for exclusion from employment.|
|Convictions||About convictions unless the information bears on job performance. Note: Do not make indefensible assumptions about future behavior based on conviction.|
|Credit Ratings or Garnishments||About credit ratings, financial status, car or home ownership, since they usually have little or no relation to job performance. NOTE: It is a civil rights violation to refuse to hire a minority on the basis of a person's poor credit rating, unless business necessity for doing so can be shown.|
|*Education and Experience||*About education or experience that is not related to job performance. Inquiries specifically asking the nationality, racial affiliation or religious affiliation of the school attended. (Requirements should not be higher than needed for job; that discriminates against poor and/or minorities with less opportunity for education.)|
|Family Status||About family planning, number and ages of children, child care arrangements, spouse's employment, salary, travel schedule, whether applicant is "head of household."|
|Gender/Gender Identity/Gender Expression||About applicant's gender, gender identity, or gender expression.|
|Language Skills||About language skill unless it is a necessary job requirement. In limited circumstances,
questions can be asked about ability to speak, read or write English or a foreign language but ONLY if the job requires.
|Marital Status||Whether a person is married, single, separated, divorced, widowed or engaged.|
|Military Record||Type of discharge from military.|
|Name||Whether a person has worked under a different name. Questions that force a candidate to divulge marital status, ancestry or national origin, or transgender identity.|
|Organizations||About all organizations the person belongs to; organizations which indicate race, color, creed, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, religion, or national origin.|
|Photograph||For photo before hiring.|
|Physical/Mental Disabilities||General questions about whether person is disabled or the severity or nature of the disability: questions soliciting information that is not job related.|
|Pregnancy||About medical history concerning pregnancy and related health matters. Do not reject applicants because of pregnancy alone.|
|Race or Color||Applicant's race.|
|References||Do not ask for a mere listing of unchecked references. Requesting references is fine if you as the employer actually check with the requested references for employment suitability.|
|Relatives||Name or address of any relative of adult applicant. Information about friends or relatives working for an employer is not relevant to an applicant's job performance.|
|Religion||About religious denomination, affiliation, religious holidays observed.|
|Sexual Orientation/Sexuality||About applicant's sexual orientation/sexuality.|
|Whom to contact in case of emergency||Do not ask for this information before hiring.|
Making an Offer
Follow the directions below when initiating the offer phase of the recruitment process:
- Once the search committee has completed their review and analysis of the candidates, they will make their hiring recommendations in PageUp by listing an applicant in “Recommend for hire” status or in “Not recommended for hire” status. The hiring supervisor may review candidates in both statuses and determine which candidate they would like to extend an offer to. If the hiring supervisor is interested in offering the position to a candidate who was not recommended by the search committee, they must email a justification explaining why they are choosing a candidate who was not recommended for the position to the Office of Human Resources.
- The hiring supervisor or administrative support person connected to the job may complete the offer card for the applicant who has been selected as the finalist. The offer card will ask for information revolving around the offer, which will, in turn, create the offer letter/contract later on. The offer card is sent through an approval process.
- Once the offer card has been fully approved, the hiring supervisor may make the verbal offer to the applicant.
- Once the hiring supervisor receives an acceptance to their verbal offer, they must notify the recruitment team (Shannon Lemke) immediately of the acceptance. The recruitment team will immediately follow up with the applicant by sending them a written offer of employment, which is securely sent through PageUp.
- Once the candidate electronically accepts and signs their offer of employment, PageUp will redirect them to a New Starter Form. Once completed, the criminal background screen will immediately be initiated.
- The Office of Human Resources will follow up with the hiring supervisor based on the results of the criminal background screen.
- The onboarding process begins.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the standard operating procedures for recruiting and hiring on campus? Please use the following document when you have a recruitment need that arises in your area. Our standard operating procedures for recruiting and hiring outlines the various actions departments can take to fill positions.
What are some unique hiring circumstances surrounding instructional academic staff and fixed-term terminal academic staff? Please review this document to learn more about some these unique hiring situations.
What is the difference between an Acting and an Interim role? To understand the difference between these two roles, reference this brief guide.
What is the standard procedure for conducting professional reference checks? You may find the standard reference check form here. If you are using the PageUp system for reference checks by moving applicants into “Basic Reference Check” status, you may review the questions asked to references here.
- The questions asked to references need to be identical for each candidate you are inquiring about.
- The results of the reference checks need to be documented along with all other search criteria.
- You may conduct reference checks at any time during the search process.
- Anybody can conduct reference checks (search committee members, supervisor, etc.). You need to be consistent as to who you conduct the checks on, such as all candidates who have been phone interviewed or all finalists.
- Make sure candidates are notified if and when you are checking their references. Also, candidates need to be notified if their current employer is being contacted. References that are not identified on a reference list by the candidate may be contacted, however, the candidate needs to be notified prior to doing so.
I am a supervisor and I was contacted by a potential employer for a reference check regarding a current or former employee. How should I respond? Please proceed to answer their questions to the best of your ability and/or comfort level. Per UW System policy, you must also notify the potential employer of the appropriate UW System institution contact for any questions regarding employee misconduct (including any violation of sexual violence or sexual harassment policies), even if the potential employer does not specifically ask. The appropriate UW System institution contact must disclose whether the employee has ever been found to have engaged in, is currently under investigation for, or left during an active investigation in which they were accused of sexual violence or sexual harassment. Please use the following statement when in these situations:
“All questions related to employee misconduct including sexual misconduct are addressed only by our human resources department, which can be contacted by email at email@example.com. This isn’t meant to imply that this candidate has committed any misconduct but is something we are required by policy to tell all potential employers.”
What is a position of trust? Per Regent Policy Document 20-19, positions of trust are those positions that require unsupervised or significant access to minors, under the age of 18 who are NOT enrolled or accepted for enrollment at a UW System Institution, and medical patients (vulnerable populations); property access; financial/fiduciary duties; an all executive level positions. Those who hold a position of trust are required to complete a criminal background check every four years with the Human Resources Office.
Recruiting and Maintaining a Diverse Workforce
UW Oshkosh is committed to building an inclusive and supportive institutional environment and is actively trying to increase equity, diversity, and inclusion across every level of the University. One of the most daunting challenges is designing and implementing effective recruitment strategies for attracting and engaging with prospective well-qualified employees across a wide spectrum of diversity.
Inclusive Position Descriptions
The position description provides a blueprint for the candidate to imagine their role with a company, encouraging them to, or discouraging them from, applying to a position. By leveraging technology and psychology to redesign position descriptions, you can attract a more diverse pool of candidates.
It is important to keep it simple and focused. Too many required qualifications will unnecessarily restrict the pool of candidates. A well-designed position description will carefully differentiate between “required” and “preferred” qualifications. Another consideration is to keep the application process as simple as possible for candidates. Requiring too many things in the initial application phase can deter qualified candidates from applying. You can always ask later on for additional materials.
AVOID EXTREME MODIFIERS
Avoid phrases like “best of the best” “off the charts”, “world-class” or “unparalleled”. Research shows that these kinds of terms tend to prevent women as well as men from applying. Anyone who has been raised/socialized to downplay their expertise, or not “toot their own horn”, will be less likely to categorize themselves in these ways, even when they are very highly qualified. Suggested alternatives would be: “truly innovative”, “a genuine curiosity”, “highly respected”, “excellent, thoughtful, or perceptive [insert type of skills]”, “dedicated or committed to creative problem solving and getting things done”.
AVOID CREATING REQUIREMENTS THAT CAN BE MET BY ALTERNATIVE MEANS
Specific degrees, must have knowledge of organization, etc.
Avoid requiring specific types of degrees, unless that is a job specific requirement, as in the case of nurses. Try to create broad inclusion of possibilities in terms of degree and years of experience or types of experience. Avoid indications that the candidate must have knowledge of the University of Wisconsin specifically, unless that really is the only applicable knowledge-base. Be careful about requiring someone to use their own vehicle, when they may be able to arrange for alternative transportation. And above all else, be sure the skills and knowledge required for the job are tied back to the duties indicated in the job description itself.
AVOID GENDER-SPECIFIC PRONOUNS (HE OR SHE), & IMPROVE BALANCE OF “MASCULINE/FEMININE” ASSOCIATED LANGUAGE
Subtle, often overlooked use of language can dissuade people with certain identities from applying.
The goal is to achieve a balance of language. It may seem obvious, but this kind of mistake is more common than you think. Rephrase to avoid the need for specific pronouns. When describing tasks of the ideal candidate , use gender neutral pronouns like “they/them” or “you”. Use a tool like the free Gender Decoder to identify problem spots in your word choices. Examples: “Analyze” and “determine” are typically associated with male traits, while “collaborate” and “support” are considered female. It’s also important to remember that in calling these “masculine” and “feminine” words, we are talking about historical associations, rather than saying that these things actually are masculine or feminine. In reality, we know that both men and women can be good at managing and analyzing or understanding and nurturing.
Search Committee Composition
Hiring Officials are expected to convene search & screen committees that are diverse, particularly with respect to race/ethnicity, gender and sexuality. In appointing members to a search committee, the hiring authority may also consider other forms of diversity. The objective is to assemble a team of individuals reflecting a broad range of individual backgrounds, skills, experiences and attributes relevant to the search and the nature of the position.
Search committee diversity is important in order to foster the inclusion of people with varied experiences and ideas as well as the engagement of an array of applicants. Search committees with a diverse composition have the benefit of a rich set of perspectives as well as access to more varied and diverse networks for outreach and recruitment of candidates. Moreover, diverse search committees send important, positive signals to interviewees about the University’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, often enhancing the interest of candidates from diverse groups as well as the interest of candidates for whom diversity and inclusion are core values.
A diverse search committee is very important; however, it is also important that the search chair and all search committee members collectively take responsibility for developing a proactive strategy to recruit a diverse candidate pool and for assuring an equitable and fair process for all candidates.
Tips for Successfully Recruiting Diverse Candidates
- Cast a wide net when searching for prospective employees
- Keep in mind that networking is the most effective way to recruit and hire diverse candidates
- Actively network among communities representing the full spectrum of diversity
- Develop partnerships with professional organizations and other sources where diverse candidate pools exist
- Post jobs with web sites and publications targeted at underrepresented communities
Get the advertisement out in as many places as you can. Don’t forget about listservs, schools, professional networks etc! You can personally recruit people into the pool by asking friends if they know of qualified candidates, then call those people and encourage them to apply.
You can encourage a broad, diverse applicant pool by recruiting all positions both internally and externally.
INCLUDE TARGETED RECRUITMENT SOURCES
Because different applicant groups often rely on different recruitment sources, the most effective recruitment plans are the ones that include sources targeted at the particular pool of candidates being sought. It is important to cast a wider net and use diverse recruiting sources in addition to those that you already use to attract traditional candidates.
For example, minority job fairs and media that are targeted at particular racial or ethnic groups are practical ways to convey the message that your department is actively seeking minority candidates. There are also an infinite number of affinity groups for minority candidates in various fields that hold conferences where your department could gain visibility among a targeted pool of candidates (e.g., National Society of Black Engineers, National Society of Hispanic MBAs, National Minority Technology Council). There are also many recruitment sources that specifically target veterans and people with disabilities.
Screening, Unconscious Bias, & More
A vast body of research shows that the hiring process is biased and unfair. Unconscious racism, ageism, sexism, heterosexism, and cissexism play a big role in whom we hire. But there are steps you can take to recognize and reduce these biases.
The aim of screening is to find the best person for the job.
- Be consistent.
- Document decisions made and the reasons for them.
- Generally you want to keep as many people in the pool as long as possible.
What is Unconscious Bias?
Psychologists tell us that our unconscious biases are simply our tendency to prefer people who are like us, sound like us, and share our interests. Social psychologists call this phenomenon “social categorization” whereby we routinely and rapidly sort people in to groups. This preference bypasses our normal, rational, and logical thinking. We use these processes very effectively but the categories we use to sort people are not logical, modern, or perhaps even legal. These neurological “short cuts” can lead to bias and poor decision making.
UNCONSCIOUS BIAS IS HARD-WIRED
Deep within our subconscious, stereotypes are ingrained.
Neuropsycholigists tell us cognitive bias is built into the very structure of the brain. Our unconscious brain processes and sifts vast amounts of information looking for patterns (200,000 times more than the conscious mind). When the unconscious brain sees two things occurring together it begins to expect them to be seen together and begins to wire them together neurally.
Brain imaging scans have demonstrated that when people are shown images of faces that differ from their own faces, the experience activates an irrational prejudgment in the brain’s alert system for danger; the amygdala. This happens in less than a tenth of a second. Our associations and biases are likely to be activated every time we encounter a member of a particular group, even if we consciously reject a group stereotype.
RESEARCH ON BIAS & ASSUMPTIONS
We all like to think that we are objective scholars who judge people solely on their credentials and achievements, but copious research shows that every one of us has a lifetime of experience and cultural history that shapes the review process. The results from controlled research studies demonstrate that people often hold implicit or unconscious assumptions that influence their judgements. Recognizing biases and other influences not related to the quality of candidates can help reduce their impact on your search and review of candidates.
- We encourage all search committee members to take an online Implicit Association Test (IAT) to investigate the extent to which social stereotypes that are pervasive in our society can influence their own unconscious thought and actions.
OVERCOMING UNCONSCIOUS BIASES
SOME TIPS ABOUT HOW TO OVERCOME BIASES AND ASSUMPTIONS
- Remind yourself of the need to be fair and objective at key times, either in your head or with written reminders such as posters and cards.
- Spend sufficient time (15-20 minutes) evaluating each applicant. Take breaks during extended or emotional discussions.
- Know where you are in terms of your motivations to change or manage your biases. It can be unrealistic to expect to change deeply held beliefs. It may be all you can do is expect to manage them in key situations (e.g. appraisals, interviews, etc.).
- Learn about research on biases and assumptions.
- Discuss research on biases and assumptions and consciously strive tominimize their influence on your evaluation of candidates.
- Develop criteria for evaluating candidates and apply them consistently to all applicants.
- Evaluate each candidate’s entire application; don’t depend too heavily on only one element such as the letters of recommendation, or the prestige of the degree-granting institution or postdoctoral program.
- Be able to defend every decision for rejecting or retaining a candidate.
- Periodically evaluate your decisions and consider whether qualified women and underrepresented minorities are included. If not, consider whether evaluation biases and assumptions are influencing your decisions.
DISCOVER YOUR BIASES
There are incredible resources that can help you explore your unconscious biases.
Harvard Implicit Bias Test [https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/takeatest.html]
Greater awareness is the first step to address negative group associations.
Invisible Gorilla Video [ http://www.theinvisiblegorilla.com/videos.html ]
Video examples of cognitive biases and perception tests.
The Invisible Gorilla [ http://www.theinvisiblegorilla.com/overview.html ]
Book by: Christopher Chabris and Daniel Simons
Everday Bias [ http://everydaybias.com/ ]
Book by: Howard Ross
Blindspot [ http://spottheblindspot.com/the-book/ ]
Book by: Mahzarin Banaji and Anthony Greenwald
Bringing Candidates onto Campus
We are not only evaluating candidates; candidates are also evaluating us! Consider how you can demonstrate to candidates that they will be professionally and personally supported in the position, our institution, and our communities.
INTERVIEWING CULTURALLY DIVERSE CANDIDATES
At job interviews, candidates behave in ways that they believe will demonstrate how suited they are for the job. But this behavior is based on what is important in their culture – which may be quite different from yours. Once you are aware of these cultural differences, you can put them into context so that you look more deeply at the candidate’s skills and experience.
Here are seven areas of body language to consider when interviewing candidates from other cultures:
- Eye contact: You may think making eye contact is a sign of respect and confidence, and candidates who avoid eye contact give the impression that they lack confidence, are hiding something, or are not trustworthy. In other cultures, making eye contact is considered highly disrespectful, and avoiding eye contact is a sign of respect.
- Handshake: You may think a firm handshake is another sign of confidence. But in some cultures, a soft, weak handshake is the norm. And in some cultures, people shake hands vigorously for a longer time, and may put their left hand on your elbow, which may feel invasive to some people. As well, a candidate from a culture where men and women don’t shake hands may feel uncomfortable shaking hands with an interviewer of the opposite sex.
- Smiling: You may think a warm smile is a welcoming gesture from an interviewer, and when a candidate returns the smile, both people connect. Some cultures may smile when they are embarrassed, or to conceal discomfort, and other cultures “only smile when there is something to smile about.”
- Gestures: You may think a nod means agreement, but some other cultures roll their heads from side to side to indicate agreement. By mistake, you may interpret this as disagreement. In other cultures, people move their head down to indicate agreement — which is usually mistaken for disagreement here.
- Body odors: Smells can greet you before you exchange words. You may be very conscious of odors, and expect candidates to be fresh and clean. In some cultures, people use strong perfumes and colognes. Food smells such as garlic or spices, or body odors, may lead you to cross candidates off your list right away. Try to be more considerate of someone’s cultural background.
- Space wars: Candidates who come too close for comfort may cause you to retreat. You may be used to wide open spaces, and feel invaded when someone encroaches in your personal space. In most countries, the population is more dense and people are used to standing closer together. A candidate who moves closer may just be attempting to connect.
- Showing emotion: The amount of emotion we display in the workplace is also based on culture. In some cultures, people do not show emotions openly in a business setting, and may be perceived as not being interested in the job. On the other hand, some may show more emotion that we are used to in the workplace, and may be perceived as not being in control.
Inclusive Hiring Principles
We always seek to hire the most qualified candidate for the job.
Strive to have a candidate pool that reflects our diverse community.
Ensure fair and equitable hiring processes and procedures.
Evaluate candidates with core competencies and university values, not culture fit.
Lead with the values of equality and inclusion in the interview experience.