2.2. 2 Search Procedures for Hiring Regular Positions

Policy Section: Employment

Policy Number and Title: 2.2.2 Search Procedures for Hiring Regular Employees
Applicable to: All Applicants for Regular Positions
Effective Date: Revised October 15, 2003

Policy Description

Princeton University seeks to attract the ablest individuals as faculty, staff and students and is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity. As a federal contractor, the University has legal obligations to develop and implement affirmative action programs to recruit, hire and promote women, minorities, people with disabilities and Vietnam era and disabled veterans. Departments are required to run open searches, advertise appropriately and keep documentation on the search and selection processes.

Application of this Policy

The following outline of the employment search process must be followed for all regular position vacancies for administrative positions (salary grades 1 through 10) and related staffs, and all biweekly – paid support staff positions for technical support, service and maintenance and office and clerical support. Search process guidelines to be followed when recruiting casual employees may be found in policy 2.2.3 Employment/Search Procedures for Casual Employees. Hiring supervisors (individuals responsible for filling the vacancy) should consult with their staffing specialist if they need additional information or have questions.

Posting a Position Vacancy

Hiring Supervisor
  • Contacts the Office of Human Resources to discuss the procedure for filling the anticipated position vacancy.
  • Assesses the functions and responsibilities to be fulfilled by the new staff member.
  • Reviews the existing job description (or develops one if the position is newly created) and makes any necessary changes.
  • Sends the completed Position Requisition and Essential Functions forms to the Office of Human Resources for review.
Office Of Human Resources
  • Reviews and approves the Requisition and Essential Functions forms (after making any necessary modifications and reviewing them with the hiring supervisor).
  • Forwards the necessary forms to the staffing specialist who posts the position.

Recruiting Candidates for a Vacancy

The staffing specialist and hiring supervisor discuss filling the vacancy and develop a recruitment plan, which takes into account:
  • the equal opportunity and affirmative action laws that apply and whether the University has established an affirmative action goal for women or minorities
  • the documentation that will be needed at the conclusion of the search
  • the scope of the search; that is, whether it will be advertised beyond being listed on Careers at Princeton, and the type of advertising, networking or other special recruitment strategies that will be used to develop an applicant pool
  • the screening, interview and reference checking processes
  • the application deadline, if any, and a time frame for the completion of the search
  • the names of any individuals serving on a search committee, or others who have direct input into the hiring decision

Screening Candidates For a Vacancy

The staffing specialist and hiring supervisor discuss who will be responsible for screening the applicants. The staffing specialist advises hiring supervisors who wish to review the applications themselves to:
  • screen applications based upon (1) the essential functions of the position (any candidates who do not meet the minimum qualifications for the position must be eliminated from further consideration); and (2) the preferred skills if further refinement of the pool is needed and
  • schedules the remaining candidates for interviews.
The staffing specialist or the hiring supervisor is familiar with the interviewing guidelines published by the Office of Human Resources. If other individuals are interviewing the candidates, their role in the process should be fully explained, e.g., ranking the candidates based on the interviews or providing general feedback on the candidates. After the entire process is completed by the hiring supervisor, a finalist(s) is selected.

Checking References

Generally, the staffing specialist checks references for all external finalists. Hiring supervisors who wish to check references for external candidates themselves should consult with the staffing specialist prior to beginning that process. References for internal candidates are generally checked by the hiring supervisor.
A review of the internal candidate's personnel record is part of the reference process.
Questions asked during reference checks should be designed to elicit information about the candidate's skills and qualifications for the position (whenever possible, they should be consistent for all candidates).
Any comments about which the provider has no first – hand information, or which are unrelated to the individual's skills or performance should be disregarded. Also, caution should be exercised in evaluating or weighing comments which are not for attribution (off the record).

Selecting the Final Candidate

The staffing specialist will provide the hiring manager with a search summary report for review and confirmation before an offer of employment is made. The hiring supervisor discusses the salary range to be offered with the staffing specialist who normally extends the offer of employment to the candidate selected. Hiring supervisors who wish to extend the offer of employment themselves must consult with the staffing specialist before contacting the candidate selected.


Office of Human Resources
(609) 258 – 3300

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