Academic Hiring Manual

2.2 Search Plan and Position Request - Academic Hiring Manual

A.  Search plan (Chairperson may want to confirm that the Dean will approve the position before initiating the formal process of search plan and position request.) 
  1. Search Committee:
    • The Chairperson is responsible for determining the final composition of search committees. A unit may use the same search committee for more than one vacancy.
    • Each search committee must have a member (of any gender or race/ethnic id) designated to act as affirmative action advocate. This member shall evaluate the search on an on-going basis, in terms of the goals and principles of affirmative action, equal opportunity, non-discrimination and diversity and bring deficiencies to the attention of the search committee (or as necessary to the attention of the Chairperson) for corrective action, including but not limited to:
      • discriminatory bias, prejudice or stereotyping in communications, including but not limited to committee discussions, written communications, and interview questions
      • inadequate/ineffective search strategies for identifying qualified individuals of underutilized groups, and soliciting applications from such individuals
      • inadequate representation of underutilized groups in applicant or candidate pools
      • discriminatory bias, prejudice or stereotyping in criteria for the evaluation of applicants' materials and candidates' interviews
      • little or no weight given to affirmative action goals as a factor in the decision making process
    • It is highly desirable, but not required, to have a diverse search committee, including tenured (where possible) minority and women members/consultants.
  2. Affirmative Action Session: The Chairperson must conduct an affirmative action session with the search committee. At this session the Chairperson delivers the charge to the search committee and the charge to the search committee member designated as affirmative action advocate. The session will focus on the University's commitment to affirmative action and equal opportunity, and to a fair, legal, and effective recruitment process which advances diversity and excellence in the academic workforce; and on the search committee members' personal responsibility and accountability for affirmative action. The "Handbook for Faculty Searches with Special Reference to Affirmative Action" and the "Faculty Search Toolkit" must be shared and reviewed with the search committee along with the unit's affirmative action goals and timetables. Search procedures and strategies should be discussed.

    This session must occur prior to initiation of the posting and recruitment process. The staff of the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives (I3) is available as a resource for those conducting review sessions and also for the search committee's affirmative action advocate. For assistance, contact Ms. Paulette Granberry Russell, Director and Senior Advisor, I3, at 517-353-3924.
  3. Chairperson submits the Academic Position Request form, which includes the "Search Committee Composition" to the Dean.

B. Position Request: Chairperson submits electronically the Academic Position Create Request including advertisement to the Dean.

C.  Dean approves the Academic Position Request form (including Search Committee Composition) and submits it with the Specialist Position Description (for specialists only) and supporting commentary (for tenure system positions at rank of associate or full professor) as a package to the Office of Faculty and Academic Staff Affairs.

D.  The Provost approves the position request taking into consideration, level of unit productivity, enrollment projections, staff flexibility, program needs, priorities (University and college), budget implications, affirmative action goals, staff flexibility, and salary range. A disapproved position request is returned to the Dean at this point. 

E.  Human Resources posts approved positions on the Careers @ MSU websites.

F.  I3 reviews the search committee composition in the Academic Position Create Request form for evidence of effective affirmative action, equal opportunity and non-discrimination in the search plan, and returns it along with the CHR Approved Academic Position Request form to the Dean.

G.  Any changes in the search committee composition should be submitted immediately to the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives and Monitoring via an Academic Position Request form. 

H.  If a position is not filled within two years of Human Resources approval, the unit must start over with the search plan, position request, and posting process. If a search is to be completed shortly after the conclusion of a 2-year period or has been completed, but the individual will not be joining the MSU faculty for some time, the Dean notifies the Associate Provost/VP for Faculty and Academic Staff Affairs by e-mail, listing the position number affected and an estimate of the projected date on which the appointment materials are to be submitted to the Office of Faculty and Academic Staff Affairs; then sends the appointment materials on or before the projected date. 

I.  To modify a previously approved position, the Dean emails the Associate Provost/VP for Faculty and Academic Staff Affairs to request approval.

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