This guide provides policy information and procedures for faculty and staff to conduct effective and equitable searches for non-senate academic employees. The guide, along with the AP Recruit online system, supports the University of California in fulfilling our academic interest in the pursuit of excellence and the legal requirement of non‐discrimination under federal and state laws. Additional resources are available for analysts supporting non-senate searches including checklists and a Quick Guide on the activities to complete during the search.
Creating the Search Plan
Formatting the title correctly is important for maintaining consistency when UC Berkeley’s job postings are “scraped” automatically from AP Recruit and posted to other online locations. Use the following format:
“Job Title – Area of specialization if applicable – Department/school/college.”
- Lecturer Pool – Composition – College Writing Programs
- Lecturer – Nuclear Engineering – College of Engineering
- Academic Coordinator II – Executive Director – Henry Wheeler Center for Emerging and Neglected Diseases
- Postdoctoral Scholar – Semiconductor Nanocrystals – Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Assistant Project Scientist – Center for Effective Global Action
The “open date” is the date on which the search goes live. The IRD (“initial review date”) marks the closing of the first pool of applicants. “Additional review dates” can be assigned if the initial applicant pool does not yield a candidate. If the committee does not wish to advertise the next review date to applicants it can be made “private.” Applications will only be visible to committee reviewers if they are completed before a review date (deadline is 11:59pm PST the night of the review date). If an application is submitted after a review date has passed and there is not an additional review date set in the future, it will remain hidden from reviewers (even if the final date is in the future). The “final date” is the last date for individuals to apply for the position.
All non-senate recruitments should be set up as IRD/Open until filled (unless a special request has been approved by OFEW).
IRD must be a minimum of 15 days after the open date. Final date must be at least 30 days after the open date. Searches with fewer than ten qualified, complete applicants must remain open for 30 days and all candidates who apply in those 30 days must be reviewed. A public additional review date will need to be added.
The description field text is the advertisement that AP Recruit displays to potential job applicants. A carefully drafted and complete description is an important component of a broad and inclusive search. Please note that the hiring unit is responsible for all text formatting and confirming the hyperlinks are correct in the description field. This section of AP Recruit should be used to describe the job duties and qualifications, and provide required information including the Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity statement. Refer to the Non-Senate Search Plan Checklist for a complete list of the requirements for the description field. The required elements ensure that the University meets its obligations as a federal contractor, meets additional requirements of the Federal Department of Labor, follows University of California policies, and uses best practices for reaching a broad and inclusive pool.
Units are strongly encouraged to include the following language in the description field that reflects our institutional values in advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- "UC Berkeley has an excellent benefits package as well as a number of policies and programs to support employees as they balance work and family."
- “Diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values at UC Berkeley and [department X]. Our excellence can only be fully realized by faculty, students, and staff who share our commitment to these values. Successful candidates for our academic positions will demonstrate evidence of a commitment to advancing equity and inclusion.”
Reference & Document Requirements
Letters of reference are often an important part of recruitment for non-senate academic positions. Letters may be obtained by asking candidates to have referees submit letters directly through AP Recruit, or by asking candidates for referee contact information only (there is no obligation to contact references provided by candidates). Carefully consider the requirement for letters of reference because it cannot be changed once the recruitment is published and the first applicant applies.
It is common to provide a range (e.g., 3 - 5 or 2 - 4) of number of letters or contact information to request. Letters can only be received through AP Recruit or directly from the referee to the department analyst. Additional letters submitted on behalf of a candidate cannot be accepted.
Use the Reference Visibility tool to choose who will have access to the letters of reference. For non-senate recruitments letters are typically viewable to all reviewers.
If letters are requested as part of the application it is necessary for all letters to be received. AP Recruit will mark an application “complete” without letters (if they are requested by the candidate), but a candidate cannot be considered a proposed candidate without the required number of letters. The analyst has the option of sending an email reminder to applicants regarding missing letters of reference, but if a reminder is sent to one applicant it must be sent to all. Applicants can also re-request letters of reference from their referees even after the final date.
Notice of policy on disclosure of evaluation letters
All potential referees must be given notice of the University of California policy on disclosure and confidentiality of academic personnel review files, including when the letters are provided via a third party such as a dossier service or career center. The link to the policy is: apo.berkeley.edu/ucb-confidentiality-policy. Referees who upload their letter into AP Recruit will receive the following notice through the system:
“Although a candidate may request to see the contents of letters of evaluation in accordance with California law and University policy, your identity will be held in confidence. The material made available will exclude the letterhead, the signature block, and material below the signature block. Therefore, material that would identify you, particularly information about your relationship to the candidate, should be placed below the signature block. In any legal proceeding or other situation in which the source of confidential information is sought, the University does its utmost to protect the identity of such sources.”
All advertisements for jobs where letters of reference may be sought must include the follow statement:
“All letters will be treated as confidential per University of California policy and California state law. Please refer potential referees, including when letters are provided via a third party (i.e., dossier service or career center), to the UC Berkeley statement of confidentiality (apo.berkeley.edu/ucb-confidentiality-policy) prior to submitting their letters.”
Set up the document requirements in AP Recruit to indicate which documents individuals must submit to be considered for the job, and which (if any) are optional. Notice that the system automatically includes a Curriculum Vitae as a default requirement; other listed choices are optional. All the default document requirements can be edited and deleted.
Provide a unique upload slot for each document. For example, if three publications are required, there should be three slots with labels such as Publication One, Publication Two, and Publication Three, rather than as “Three Publications.” Beware of requiring more information than is considered necessary to adequately evaluate the candidates adequately; an applicant with an incomplete application cannot be reviewed or hired for the position. Carefully select the documents relevant to your search and remember that the document requirements cannot be changed once the recruitment is published and the first applicant applies.
Document requirements entered into this section will be displayed on the job posting generated by AP Recruit so there is no need to include the document requirements in the description text.
Applicant Pool Diversity Benchmarks and Goals
There are two data representations that provide diversity benchmarks and goals for academic recruitments: (1) “Availability Demographics” provide information about the national availability pool for a particular position; and (2) “Affirmative Action Goals” provide information about demographic groups in broad job areas that are currently “underutilized” at Berkeley according to their national availability.
The availability demographics serve as the benchmark by which the applicant pool should be compared, by gender and race/ethnicity. For most positions at Berkeley the data come from the Survey of Earned Doctorates, and provide information about the national availability of PhD recipients over a relevant recent time period (typically five years for non-senate academic positions).
The search committee should review the availability data, and compare the applicant pool to this information in order to evaluate the general effectiveness of the search and recruitment outreach efforts.
AP Recruit invites all individuals to voluntarily self-identify their gender and race/ethnicity, as well as disability status, and status as a protected veteran. While we are required to ask individuals this information, they may decline to state with no negative repercussions. The gender and race/ethnicity information provided is presented in aggregate as a comparison with the benchmark data.
Affirmative action goals
As a federal contractor, UC Berkeley establishes and maintains an Affirmative Action Program and a yearly written Affirmative Action Plan (“AAP”), and fulfills requirements established by the Federal Department of Labor, Office for Federal Contractor Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) to provide equal employment opportunity and nondiscrimination in hiring and personnel processes. The UC Berkeley AAP provides yearly data on groups that are “underutilized” on the Berkeley campus by broad job type and by schools and colleges. Underutilization is defined as having fewer minorities, women, individuals with disabilities, or protected veterans in a particular job group than would reasonably be expected given their availability in the job market.
The Affirmative Action goals for searches reflect this underutilization (shaded cells in the Affirmative Action goals table denote current underutilization of a group). Annual goals are equal to availability for underutilized job groups; the University must make good faith efforts to address the underutilization through recruiting a broad and inclusive pool of applicants. Outreach to individuals from particular groups is often necessary to meet the goals.
It is important to know the distinction between federal affirmative action law that requires efforts to address underutilization in our workforce, and California law, which prohibits the selection of individuals based on their demographic characteristics. California Proposition 209 prohibits discrimination against or preferential treatment to “any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, education or contracting.” It does not, however, prohibit actions necessary to establish or maintain eligibility for any federal program, where ineligibility would result in loss of federal funds to the University. Therefore, UC Berkeley is obligated to take affirmative action to ensure equal opportunity in employment, but we may not set aside positions for individuals from specific groups.
The prohibition against discrimination described in Proposition 209 is consistent with University policy(link is external) prohibiting discrimination in employment on the bases of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, pregnancy, physical or mental disability, medical condition (cancer‐related or genetic characteristics), ancestry, marital status, age, sexual orientation, citizenship, or status as a covered veteran. The prohibition against discrimination supports the University’s commitment to address the barriers that face under‐represented groups in academic careers and to serve the needs of our diverse state.
External Advertisements & Outreach
Once the search plan is approved, the description field text should be used for all external ad postings. If the unit intends to distribute multiple versions of the advertisement, upload only the shortened versions (medium and/or short ads) as PDFs to the Ad Documents section of AP Recruit. Please make sure these additional medium or short ads are labeled clearly to avoid confusion. Only advertisements that have been approved as part of the search plan may be posted or published.
Posting and publishing advertisements
All advertisements for academic recruitments are automatically posted to the following locations:
- AP Recruit
- Inside Higher Ed
- Northern California Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (Norcal HERC)
- Higher Ed Jobs
- America's Job Exchange (AJE)
- AJE Veterans Exchange
- AJE Disability Exchange
- AJE State Exchange for California
- Job Opportunities for Disabled American Veterans (JOFDAV)
- Disabled Person
- Diversity Working
- The California State Workforce Site (CalJobs)
- Bay Area Career One Stop Center Representatives
- Community Outreach Organizations
Central posting of academic job advertisements to these locations meets the University’s OFCCP diversity outreach compliance requirements. However, it is ultimately up to the hiring unit to generate a robust applicant pool. Search committees are encouraged to use discipline-specific locations and to post job advertisements on websites, listservs, and blogs that serve a diverse audience within the specific field or specialization (for example, Science, Nature, the Modern Languages Association, the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science, social science listservs, Association for Women in Science, National Society of Black Engineers, etc.).
Support for posting job advertisements in additional locations through Job Elephant
Job Elephant is available to assist with most advertising, at no additional cost from the normal posting fees. The Berkeley campus representative is Michael Ang (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Prior to submitting the search plan and advertisement to the Office for Faculty Equity & Welfare, email Michael Ang to discuss possible external outreach options.
The OFCCP, U.S, Department of Labor, requires that basic qualifications be established and listed for all academic positions. These requirements must be met at the time of application and are necessary for consideration as an applicant for the position. Each individual who applies for an academic position will be considered “unknown” until assessed by the Analyst or Chair for meeting the basic qualifications. The assessment will move the individual to the “qualified” or “unqualified” group. Only those individuals who meet the basic qualifications will be considered applicants according to the federal government. Individuals with incomplete applications should remain in the “unknown” category and should not be assessed for the basic qualifications. It is best practice to review applicants for the basic qualifications as soon as they apply. Individuals who do not meet the basic qualifications listed for the job should not be considered further and cannot be hired.
The additional qualifications must be met by the start date of the position. Failure to meet one of the additional qualifications disqualifies the person for hire.
Fields and disciplines are not allowed in the basic or additional qualifications. This applies to all degrees, programs, and work experience. Examples:
- Basic qualifications may only include the required degree (Bachelor's, Advanced degree, Master's, Doctoral), or enrollment in the required degree program.*
- Additional qualifications may only include the required degree, number of years of work experience (if applicable), and a publication record (if applicable).*
- Preferred qualifications should specify relevant fields/disciplines, along with other desired skills/knowledge/experience. Applicants can be deselected for not possessing preferred qualifications.
*If stating anything other than advanced degree, the qualifications must include "or equivalent international degree"
The hiring unit determines the degree, the number of years of work experience (if any), and whether a publication record is needed, based on the job duties and proposed classification. The Academic Personnel Office will consider these qualifications at the time of classification review.
Please note that OFEW highly recommends using the language “advanced degree” rather than listing specific degrees (Master’s, JD, PhD, etc.), unless a specific degree is required based on policy for the position classification (e.g., Postdocs must possess a Doctoral degree by the time of hire). If the hiring unit decides to use a specific degree in the basic or additional qualifications, they cannot hire anyone without that exact degree.
Basic and additional qualifications must be objective.
Basic (required at the time of application):
Additional (required by the start date):
Basic (required at the time of application):
Additional (required by the start date):
Basic (required at the time of application):
Additional (required by the start date):
Determining the Selection Process
It is best practice with non-senate searches to provide a description of the selection criteria to be used in evaluating the candidates, but this is not required. Although you do not need to submit the criteria for review, it is important to determine evaluation and selection criteria prior to beginning the search in order to equitably evaluate all applicants. These criteria should be job related and taken from the position description. Choose selection criteria that can be consistently applied to all candidates, and consider quantifying the evaluations with a ranking system. The Sample Candidate Evaluation Form can be used as a template from which to create the criteria. If using a search committee, ensure that all members agree on how the evaluation and selection criteria should be interpreted and how they relate to the goals for the search. For example, the search committee should discuss:
- The qualifications that an applicant must demonstrate in order to be considered for the position
- The specific attributes or dimensions along which qualified applicants will be distinguished
- The evidence the committee members will look for to determine if applicants have met the criteria
Do’s and don’ts for selection criteria and evaluation
- The search committee should rely on evidence in the discussion of candidates’ qualifications. Statements about candidates should be supported by materials in the application or from the interview.
- The search committee should not use criteria that are difficult to defend with evidence.
- Be able to explain your decision for rejecting or retaining a candidate based on evidence in the candidate’s file that follows agreed upon evaluation criteria.
- Review the evaluation of candidates at each stage of the search to be sure that the criteria are applied uniformly.
- Do not use years of experience since Ph.D., or anything age‐related as a criterion. If the criterion is education in a specific, recently developed sub‐discipline, state the criterion in terms of the sub‐discipline, not years since degree.
- Do not require uninterrupted periods of employment, as this may adversely affect women in their childbearing years and persons with medical conditions or disabilities.
- Do not use demographic characteristics to describe why a candidate either would or would not be a good fit for a position.
The role of contributions that promote diversity and equal opportunity
The University of California Academic Personnel Manual (APM 210-d) states that search committees should consider contributions to diversity in their evaluation of candidates for faculty positions at Berkeley.
The University of California is committed to excellence and equity in every facet of its mission. Teaching, research, professional and public service contributions that promote diversity and equal opportunity are to be encouraged and given recognition in the evaluation of the candidate’s qualifications. These contributions to diversity and equal opportunity can take a variety of forms including efforts to advance equitable access to education, public service that addresses the needs of California’s diverse population, or research in a scholar’s area of expertise that highlights inequalities.
The ideal way to evaluate contributions to diversity is to require applicants for academic positions to provide a statement regarding their past or potential future contributions as part of their application in AP Recruit. This allows search committees to have clear information to evaluate, rather than having to guess or rely on applicants’ other materials. It also communicates to applicants the University’s commitment to hiring academic employees who will best serve the needs of our diverse student body and public institution. AP Recruit has a default “Contributions to Diversity” application requirement, set as “optional.” To require the statement of all applicants set the document to “required” when creating the application requirements.
It is also best practice to provide a description of the selection plan to be used in evaluating the candidates, but this is not required.
Although you do not need to submit the selection plan for review, it is important to have a selection plan to evaluate the applicants and choose the proposed candidate. The selection plan should include the screening process, interview procedures, voting procedures (if relevant), etc.
Search Committee Composition and Size
Searches for non-senate academic employees vary greatly in the extent to which a formal search committee is used versus relying on a single individual, such as a faculty Principal Investigator, to conduct a search. This is a recommended guide for the most common non-senate titles:
|Type of Appointment||Reviewer(s)|
|Lecturers||Single faculty member, depending on the needs of the department|
|Academic Coordinators, Continuing Educators, Librarians, and Coordinators of Public Programs||Search committee|
|Specialists, Project Scientists, Researchers, and Postdocs||Faculty Principal Investigator. For research centers or units, a committee is often used.|
Committee Member Roles
Core committee: The search committee may consist of as many members as is necessary. One person must serve in the role of Chair.
Additional access: This role is for individuals not on the search committee who have a business reason to view applicant information.
Committee members who are non-Berkeley affiliates: To assign a non-Berkeley affiliate access as a search committee member, a Calnet Sponsored Guest account must be created. Click here for instructions and more detailed information. Once the Calnet Sponsored Guest account has been created please allow 48 hours AP Recruit to refresh before adding them as a reviewer.
Please note: It is not necessary for analysts to have “additional reviewer” roles – all analysts with access to searches in a particular department automatically have analyst access to the search.
Guidelines for Search Committees
Each department or school should establish its own procedure for appointing a search committee or individual to conduct the search, depending on the needs of the department and the job type. Department analysts, dean’s analysts and department managers may not serve on search committees for academic positions.
One member of the search committee should serve as the chair, and the committee should consist of individuals with a demonstrated commitment to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion. Whenever possible, the committee should represent a diverse cross section of individuals, including men and women, and majority and minority group members.
Any conflicts of interest must be acknowledged and addressed (see the conflicts of interest policy for senate faculty searches, and contact OFEW with questions).
Confidentiality preserves the integrity of the selection process and protects the privacy of the candidates. Specifics of the committee deliberations should not be discussed with anyone outside the search committee, with the exception of the department chair, or OFEW. The requirement for confidentiality extends to all aspects of the search, including written and verbal communications, and through all phases of the search process.
Setting up Disposition Reasons
After reviewing applicants, one or more “disposition reaons," or reasons for deselection of a candidate, must be assigned to individuals who submitted a complete application for the position, but were not selected. AP Recruit has one set of reasons that can be used for individuals deemed “unqualified” because they did not meet the basic requirements for the position as stated in the advertisement, materials submitted were not correct or were incomplete, or they withdrew prior to being invited for an interview. Another set of disposition reasons are used for all applicants who met the basic qualifications. Refer to the Dispositions Reasons tab in AP Recruit for the complete lists.
In addition, the search committee has the ability to create up to five additional custom disposition reasons that relate to the specific search being conducted if the preselected list is not sufficient. Custom disposition reasons should be clearly related to the job and must be entered as part of the Search Plan (they cannot be added after the recruitment is published). It is also possible to delete disposition reasons that do not apply to a particular recruitment. The deleted reasons will not appear as options for any candidates in the pool.
Search Plan Submission and Approval
Refer to the Non-Senate Search Plan checklist for a list of all items that must be complete prior to submitting search plans for approval. When all checklist items have been confirmed the search plan can be submitted for approval. The Recruitment will be in a “Draft” state, as shown by the badge on the Recruitments page, and edits can continue to be made as needed until the Search Plan receives final approval by OFEW. However, once OFEW starts review please do not make additional changes.
Use the following approval chain for non-senate search plans:
- Search Committee Chair (can be the search committee chair, the faculty principal investigator, or the faculty member assigned to reviewing a lecturer pool) – assign the correct name
- Department Chair (or equivalent, often the Unit Director) – assign the correct name(s)
- Dean’s Analyst – assign the correct name
- Dean (and often a Dean’s delegate) – assign the correct name(s)
- Academic Personnel Office – names are auto-populated (do not add an alternate name)
- OFEW (“Diversity Office”) – names are auto-populated (do not add an alternate name)
As the final approver, OFEW will also publish the recruitment. Once approved, the final search plan PDF serves as the permanent record of what was approved.