Inclusive Faculty Hiring – Best Practices and Resources
This memo provides guidance and resources for an inclusive faculty search. It is designed mostly for search committee members and the chair but is relevant to the entire department. Successful hiring requires a pro-active, thoughtful process that implements best practices.
Before the Search
Discuss the department’s needs and most important shortcomings related to faculty diversity.
Search committee composition: Strive for a diverse committee and/or include a diversity advocate.
Define the position as broadly as possible (regarding substance and methods) to attract a more diverse pool of candidates.
Recruit early and actively; seek diverse candidates and encourage them to apply.
Consider as early as possible where to place the job ad. Advertise in newsletters and listservs that are likely to draw the attention of a diverse pool.
Search committee members should:
Educate themselves on implicit bias and the value of diversity to department excellence
Complete ASC training on “Searching for Inclusive Excellence” (see below)
During the Search
Consider what information you will be required to report on the search process, according to ASC policies, and design the process accordingly.
Monitor the diversity of the pool at various stages and increase outreach if necessary.
Implement best practices on how to avoid bias while evaluating candidates.
Establish criteria in advance (consider an explicit screening tool) and apply standards
Be open to a wider-than-usual range of Ph.D. institutions and career paths
Develop a “long short list” using an inclusive process; focus on strengths and reasons to
consider (not reject) each candidate
Devote adequate time to evaluating each application
The chair should remind colleagues of legal requirements and best practices during a campus visit (see the Diversity Committee’s “Best Practices for Hosting a Job Candidate”).
Consider and discuss Q&A culture with your colleagues.
After the Search
Our job isn’t over once the colleague has been hired. New faculty should be “on-boarded” effectively and mentored.
We are all responsible for making new colleagues feel welcome. Reach out! Don’t assume that other colleagues are taking care of this.
Encourage new colleagues to ask questions and raise concerns with you.
Familiarize yourself with and share information on campus resources for new faculty, such as:
Resources and Research
Wendy Smooth, ASC Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, workshop on “Searching for Inclusive Excellence” (training workshop for search committee members and chairs)
Columbia University, Office of the Provost, Guide to Best Practices in Faculty Search and Hiring, July 2016.
Eve Fine & Jo Handelsman, Searching for Excellence & Diversity: A Guide for Search Committees, National Edition. WISELI: Women in Science and Engineering Leadership Institute.
OSU Kirwan Institute, States of the Science: Implicit Bias Review 2017. (Published annually)
STRIDE Committee, University of Michigan ADVANCE program, (a 50-slide Powerpoint presentation)