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Recruitment Process

Recruitment Process

Download a copy of the Powerhouse Faculty Recruitment Toolkit

STEP 1*

Department Chair appoints Search Committee ensuring a diverse membership.

*It is assumed that the college has previously received budgetary approval from the Provost on this hiring line.

STEP 2

Search committee meets to discuss: position, timetable, advertisement, special efforts planned to identify minority and women applicants.  Search committee chair will attend training hosted by Faculty Recruitment, Retention, Equity and Diversity and EOS to support these efforts.

STEP 3

Department submits request to recruit through Online Job System (OJS) and receives authorization.

STEP 4

Advertisement is placed and personal contacts are made with prospective candidates with an emphasis on diversity.

STEP 5

Committee meets to screen applicants and agree on short list. Committee submits both lists to EOS for approval. Candidate screening templates are available on the assessment page.

STEP 6

Committee interviews (Skype or face-to-face).  All interviews must be  handled in the same manner. Candidates invited for on-campus interviews must complete and submit the Criminal History forms to Faculty Affairs.

STEP 7

Committee selects  final candidate and secondary choice (if appropriate).  Department chair is informed to begin the informal negotiations.

STEP 8

Department finalizes the request to hire through OJS and receives authorization to make the offer.

STEP 9

Upon receipt of signed offer letter and successful completion of other pertinent documents, the onboarding process begins.

Search Committee

A search committee is an integral part of an effective faculty search process. The committee should be comprised of individuals who understand the requirements of the position and who are committed to the mission and goals of the department and the university.  Having a diverse search committee helps in gaining access to and evaluating candidates of different backgrounds, it also makes it less likely that the committee will overlook talented individuals with nontraditional kinds of experiences. Departments and schools with low numbers of women and minority faculty should consider inviting faculty of color and female colleagues from related departments or schools to serve on search committees.

The search committee should be prepared to be proactive and go beyond just placing advertisements and waiting for applications. They will need to energetically seek out promising prospects through their network of colleagues and scholars at other institutions and also explore the numerous online resources to search for PhD students and postdoctoral scholars from groups that are historically underrepresented in higher education.

Position Announcement

Efforts should be made to define the position in the widest possible terms consistent with the department’s needs. Make sure that the position description does not needlessly limit the pool of applicants. Some position descriptions may unintentionally exclude women or minority candidates by focusing too narrowly on subfields in which few specialize. The committee should establish selection criteria and procedures for screening and interviewing candidates before advertising the position.

Special Efforts to Identify Women and Minority Applicants

A special effort is a recruitment strategy that specifically targets underrepresented minorities and women. Therefore, a strategy that does not specifically target these groups would not qualify as a special effort. Examples of a special effort would be one where the search committee members deliberately and intentionally solicit applications, nominations, or referrals from:

  • Minority and women scholar organizations
  • Women and minority program offices
  • Professional caucuses or organizations that are organized around women or minority concerns
  • Internet discussion groups
  • Minority and women scholars/ professionals on- and off-campus
  • Community agencies related to underrepresented groups
  • Meetings of professional organizations
  • Journals targeted at women and minority readerships
  • Ethnic Studies departments  (for relevant disciplines)
  • Minority and women doctoral or post-doctoral directories
  • Departments in HBCUs and other predominantly minority institutions

Listed below are examples of special efforts:

Example 1: Women and minority candidates will be encouraged in all advertisements, which will appear in highly visible publications that are specifically marketed to minority audiences and those with extensive national and international circulations.  In addition, women and minority applicants will be identified via position announcements circulated to all schools and colleges of Optometry and via personal contacts with leaders in the field of eye care.  The members of the Faculty Recruitment and Search Committee, as well as the faculty at large, will be solicited to nominate underrepresented minorities and women for consideration.

Example 2: The department will send an announcement that encourages women and minority candidates to apply to all Engineering Department Chairs including minority serving universities. The department will also post the ad on the National Society of Black Engineers, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, and the Society of Women Engineers online job boards.

Example 3: Special efforts will be made by asking colleagues to help identify women and minority candidates; distributing the advertisement specifically to women and minority leaders; and searching resume banks of organizations targeting women and under-represented minorities.

Advertisement and Resources

Required Language for Position Announcements

UH Position Announcements must include:

1. The University’s Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action Policy statement.

“The University of Houston is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Minorities, women, veterans and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.”

 2. Dual Career statement.

“The University of Houston is responsive to the needs of dual career couples.”

Proactive Diversity Language

Research indicates that there is a positive correlation between including proactive diversity language and the diversity of the applicant pool.  “Adding an explicit criterion in the job description for experience and success in working with diverse groups of students has significant potential to broaden the qualities being considered.” (Smith et al, 2004). The diversity of the UH student body demands that job descriptions stress experience in teaching different kinds of students as well as skill in developing classroom environments that facilitate learning for all students.

Proactive language can be included as a specific job qualification or as a summary statement at the end of job announcements. Examples of proactive language include the following:

  • The University of Houston, with one of the most diverse student bodies in the nation, seeks to recruit and retain a diverse community of scholars.
  • We welcome candidates whose experience in teaching, research, or community service has prepared them to contribute to our commitment to diversity and excellence.
  • Individuals with a history of and commitment to mentoring students from underrepresented minorities are encouraged to apply.
  • The department is seeking outstanding candidates with the potential for exceptional research, excellence in teaching, and a clear commitment to enhancing the diversity of the faculty, graduate, and undergraduate student population.
  • A demonstrated commitment to improving access to higher education for disadvantaged students through teaching or mentoring activities is desired.
  • The Department is particularly interested in candidates who have experience working with students from a diverse background and a demonstrated commitment to improving access to higher education for disadvantaged students.
  • Experience in mentoring women and minorities in STEM fields is desired.
  • The University of Houston is an ADVANCE institution, one of a select group of universities in receipt of National Science Foundation funds in support of our commitment to increase the number and success of women faculty in the STEM fields.

Posting the Job Announcement

Circulating ads in traditional scholarly publications remains useful but can result in a relatively homogenous pool of applicants. To enlarge the applicant pool, consider posting ads in a variety of publications and on listservs, websites, or social media sites of relevant professional organizations, including those aimed specifically at underrepresented minorities and women. This should not only help enlarge the potential pool of applicants, but also help convey the department’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

UH faculty job are automatically posted on 5 websites: UH website, Indeed, HigherEdJobs, Texas Workforce Commission and Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (HERC).

Please click here for a listing of Diversity Publications and Organizations.

Dual-Career Program

Recognizing dual career partner assistance is a crucial element in recruiting and retaining excellent faculty, the University of Houston has initiated a program that offers customized assistance to qualified couples.  The UH Dual Career Program is a partnership between the departments, deans, the Provost’s Office and broader community. The Program is administered by the Office of Faculty Recruitment, Retention, Equity and Diversity.

Although there is no guarantee of job placement, we will help facilitate the job search process at UH and in the local community. Career searches are most successful when the partner takes a great deal of initiative. Partners are urged to conduct an active job search, using the Dual Career Program.

Faculty Positions: If a partner is also suitably qualified for a faculty position, the department, dean, and Provost may consider a qualified partner for a faculty position.  These requests are handled on an individual basis.

Staff Positions On-Campus: Partners seeking non-faculty employment on campus are encouraged to explore opportunities that match their skill set utilizing UH’s job web portal. In coordination with the UH Office of Human Resources, we offer resume and cover letter consultations and guidance regarding the types of positions available based upon experience.

Positions Off-Campus: Partners seeking employment in the community will be assisted in coordination with the UH Office of Career Services. We offer access to career databases and based upon the partner’s experience, referrals will be made to external employment opportunities and agencies.

The University of Houston is a member of the South-Central-Gulf Texas Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (HERC), which is a non-profit consortium of colleges and universities. One of HERC’s primary goals is to help the partners of faculty and staff members to secure employment. They have a web-based search engine that is free and includes faculty and staff job listings at all 19 Greater Houston member institutions.

For additional information, please contact the Office of Faculty Recruitment, Retention, Equity, and Diversity at 713-743-4045 or fac-rred@uh.edu

Benefits and Resources for UH Powerhouse Faculty

The University of Houston Powerhouse Faculty enjoy a number of both personal and professional benefits. As university employees they are offered an excellent benefits package, which includes medical, dental, life, accident, short-term disability, long-term disability, and short-term disability, long-term care insurance and flexible spending accounts. Optional benefits include accident, cancer, critical illness and hospital protection plans as well as universal life with long-term care. Medical coverage is provided through Employees Retirement System of Texas (ERS) at no cost to full-time benefits eligible faculty and staff.  Dependent medical coverage and other insurance coverage are available at group rates. Effective June 26, 2015, same-sex spouses and dependent children of those spouses became eligible for medical/dental and life insurance coverage. Progressive policies are in place to assist faculty men and women who become parents. UH offers a variety of tax-deferred and post-tax retirement savings options, and numerous resources to support your overall well-being.

In addition to the personal benefits noted above, there are professional resources and benefits that may influence a prospective Powerhouse Faculty member’s decision to accept a position at UH.  At the University of Houston they will have access to a world-class library and research facilities, technology and graduate student assistance, and numerous programs to help orient them as new faculty members.

Please click here for a listing of benefits and programs that are summarized to help search committees market the University of Houston to job candidates.