Human Resources

Hiring Process

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Policy Information
  • Issue Date: September 1, 1992
  • Primary Contact: Director of Human Resources
  • Responsible Member of Directorate: President and Director
  • Responsible Office: Human Resources
Policy Information

I. Position Requisition Form 
A. When a supervisor finds there is a need to hire a new employee, whether to replace a terminating employee or because of an increase or change in workload, the first step will be to complete a Position Requisition Form (pdf at and forward it to the Department Chair or Administrative Manager for approval. The purpose of this form is to establish a valid need for the new position, indicate that funding and space are available, and provide a source document for posting the position. A job description, detailing all essential position functions, required education and experience, should be attached. Human Resources is available for assistance. 

B. Upon approval by the Department Chair or Administrative Manager, the Position Requisition will be forwarded to Human Resources to assess that: 

1.the special duties described are consistent with the position description and grade;

2.the education and experience specified are consistent with the position description and grade.

C. If either of the above is sufficiently different from the current position description and grade, Human Resources may recommend a more appropriate description and title be selected from those presently available. Or, if the duties to be performed are not consistent with any current position description, the supervisor, with the assistance of the Human Resources Manager, will draft a new position description and recommend a grade level for the approval of the Department Chair or Administrative Manager. Once the new position description and grade are approved, a new Position Requisition will be filled out, and the necessary approvals obtained. 
II. Requisition Approval Levels 
 A. Scientific and Technical Staff members, Senior Research Assistants, Senior Engineering Assistants and Senior Information systems Assistants: See The Appointment and Promotions Handbook "The Blue Book" (pdf)

B. Exempt administrative staff, along with non-exempt graded staff with a salary grade level higher than Grade 8, require final approval from the appropriate Associate Director. 

C. Non-exempt graded staff with a salary level between Grade 1 - 8, require final approval from the Human Resources Manager. 

III. Posting of Available Positions 
A. The approved Position Requisition will be forwarded to Human Resources for recruiting purposes, where the following actions will be taken:
1.Notices of the opening will be posted on selected Institution bulletin boards and will be made available on theWeb via the WHOI Human Resources Home Page, unless otherwise requested. When the opening is filled, the notices will be removed from these sources.

2.The Ombuds/EEO Officer will be advised of the opening for affirmative action purposes.

3.The Massachusetts Department of Employment & Training and local minority agencies will be notified. This is required in the case of all vacancies other than temporary jobs of less than three days' duration.

4.If deemed appropriate, and requested by the supervisor through the Department Chair, Department Administrator or Administrative Manager, the opening may be advertised in newspapers or journals. Ad copy will be prepared by Human Resources, subject to review by the hiring supervisor. All media advertising will be handled and paid for by Human Resources.

B. A minimum waiting period of two weeks from the date of posting will be observed before a candidate can be selected. No position can have an official starting date that predates the end of the minimum waiting period. This waiting period will also allow current employees to apply for the open positions. 
IV. Exceptions for Posting and Advertising 
A. When a new position within the same department and for the same supervisor is created in recognition of an employee's particular skills and abilities, that new position need not be posted and advertised. 

B. When a new position is created solely to accomodate the transfer of an employee whose funding source has been depleted, the new position need not be posted and advertised. 

C. Employment opportunities in the position of Graduate Research Assistant will not be posted, since this position is available only to students enrolled in the Institution's graduate programs. 

D. Occasionally graduates of the education program have been hired for short periods of time immediately following the completion of their graduate program and prior to taking a new postion elsewhere. This is usually done to allow a new graduate to complete work begun while agraduate student and is unique to that individual. These are considered temporary appointments, normally not to exceed three months, and need not be posted and advertised. 

E. Non-salaried positions (e.g., Postdoctoral Scholars, MPC Fellows, GFD Staff, Guest Investigators and Students) do not need to be posted since they are largely training status positions and are subject to review by the Fellowship Committee. 

F. A former employee who has been laid off within the past year may be rehired without posting an opening, provided the individual is returning to the same position held prior to the layoff. 

G. Special cases may arise for which the posting and advertising process would be inappropriate. Consult your  HR Representative. 

V. Authorization to Hire, Promote, Transfer or Change Status Form 
A. When a selection has been made and supporting documentation obtained (e.g. references, transcripts), the supervisor will initiate an Authorization for Personnel Action form (pdf). This form, along with the selected individual's file, will be signed by the Department Chair or Administrative Manager, as appropriate, and forwarded to Human Resources. All other applications/files reviewed must also be returned to Human Resources at that time.

B. Human Resources will complete the remainder of the Authorization form, including a list of all persons considered for the position, along with the date, source of application, minority status, and method of review. 

VI. Approval Levels to Hire 
A. Final approval of the Authorization Form depends on the job category and level of the position.
1.For graded positions Grade 8 and below, the approval level stops with the Human Resources Manager.Review by the appropriate Associate Director is the appeal procedure in the event that the Department Chair/Administrative Manager do not reach agreement with the Human Resources Manager;

2.For graded positions Grade 9 and above, along with all Scientific, Technical and Administrative exempt position actions, review and/or approval is exercised by the appropriate Associate Director and/or Council.

VII. Marine Employees 
A. The Position Requisition form need not be used for authorized and funded shipboard billets. Marine crew positions will be blanket posted and advertised on an annual basis through the Port Office. 

B. Individuals can register their availability for marine positions with the Marine Personnel Coordinator, Port Office. They will be considered for these positions when a vacancy arises. 

See Marine crew employment procedures and Alvin Operations employment procedures for further information. 

Should you require assistance in the interpretation  of this procedure, please contact your Human Resources Representative.

Last updated: December 29, 2016