Open Recruitment and Waiver Request Guidelines

UWM, as an equal opportunity employer and through Human Resources best practices expect any newly created or vacant position to be filled using a competitive, merit-based recruitment process that yields a qualified, diverse candidate pool. A robust recruitment process ensures that all potential candidates are given an opportunity to apply for and be considered for a vacancy, in keeping with Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity policies and principles. Open recruitment is required for faculty, academic staff, university staff, and limited appointment positions. Further Deans and Division Heads are expected to strive towards meeting the UWM strategic goals in diversifying our workforce. Specifics of the recruitment process are outlined on the Human Resources Department web site in the Recruitment Toolkit.

In limited circumstances, a recruitment may not be appropriate or may be waived. These circumstances include:

  1. Title change for a current employee
  2. Request to waive an open recruitment
  3. Short-term/temporary hire
  4. Student Hourly Employment1
  5. Graduate Assistant, Trainee or Post-Doctoral Fellow (Research Associates)

1 Typically, student recruitments are managed via Handshake.


  1. Title Review vs. Recruitment

    Allocation of a position from one title to another is based on the substantial, permanent change in an employee’s assigned duties and responsibilities. Job duties shall be analyzed by Human Resources for a title change to occur. This change process is “incumbent neutral” and thus not dependent upon personal employee characteristics, such as educational attainment, length of service nor certifications. Review of a position for classification will also rely on UW System title definitions, review of comparable positions, and title precedents. Deans/Division Heads must consider these and the following factors as they review organizational structure, reassign duties, fill unanticipated vacancies, and reorganize departments, without creating an adverse impact on their current workforce.

    A title change may be appropriate when the following apply:

    • The position being redesigned is vacant
    • The position had supervisor responsibilities which are now being expanded due to reorganization
    • The position is being modified from a Professional Academic Staff title series to a Program Manager title series
    • It is determined that the position should be moved between Category A compensation category to Category B (or the reverse)
    • There are no placement goals in the Job Group for which the identified title is assigned

    A title change may not be appropriate when any of the following apply:

    • The position title is within a UWM job group that has a placement goal for female and/or minorities, based on the current Affirmative Action Plan
    • The position title has been identified as a Director (Assistant, Associate, or no prefix), Assistant Dean, or Administrative Officer role
    • The responsibilities would modify a current position from an individual contributor to include supervisory responsibilities of three or more employees/positions
    • The position falls within salary range 7 or higher and would be a promotional opportunity for existing employees

    If a Title Review is deemed appropriate based on the circumstances of the request, please complete the following steps:

    • Complete the Title Review Request Form in Streamline
    • Upload a new position description and organizational chart, previous position description and organizational chart, and justification for the request
    • See: Title Review with Incumbent (Change of Duties) Guideline for additional information
  2. Waiver of Open Recruitment

    A competitive recruitment process may be waived when certain criteria are met. A waiver of open recruitment process must be approved by central HR and the Chancellor’s Designee before the position can be offered to a prospective employee. Open recruitment can be waived for the following reasons:

    1. Emergency appointment to deal with unexpected conditions (i.e., resignation/retirement)

      Emergency appointment may be applicable when

      1. Circumstances have presented limited time and resources for a full, competitive recruitment and a qualified individual is available. (Please discuss if internal recruitment, shortened posting period, etc., have been considered)
      2. An employee has unique credentials whereby no other individual could feasibly perform the work (or the work would not exist).
      3. Position has been historically difficult to fill or to obtain a qualified applicant pool. (Evidence of past recruitment efforts should be identified in your request, such as advertising plans, history of declined offers, etc.)
    2. Temporary appointment to replace an employee on a leave of absence

      Used for Academic, Limited, or University Staff 2 when a terminal appointment is used to fill a position for an employee on a paid or unpaid leave. Expected duration is for the term of the leave of absence; if incumbent terminates employee, open recruitment is expected to fill the position.

      2 To replace a University Staff Ongoing position via waiver you may only hire as a University Staff Project employee.

    3. Visiting appointment, if appointment will terminate within a three-year period with no prospect of continuing

      Visiting faculty can be appointed to a position with duration up to three years.

    4. Acting/Interim appointment

      Individuals can be appointed into an Acting/Interim Appointment to fill a new position or recent vacancy on an interim basis. Recruitment would be warranted to be filled on a non-interim basis.

    5. Spousal/Partner hire

      Used for Academic, Faculty, Limited, or University Staff to employ or retain an employee by hiring their spouse/partner. Approval is contingent upon the primary spouse/partner accepting employment or continuing employment at UWM.

    6. Position conversion with necessary approvals

      Used when appointment is moved between employee classifications. Primarily may occur between Faculty/Academic Staff, Academic Staff/University Staff, or Limited/Academic Staff. When moving from University Staff to Academic Staff, election falls under the provisions of the Voluntary Reassignment policy.

    7. Accretion/Acquisition of positions

      Used when employees are acquired from an external, stand-alone entity. Generally, this occurs via legal agreement.

    If a Waiver of Recruitment is deemed appropriate, please complete the following steps:

    • Complete the Waiver of Open Recruitment Request Form in Streamline.
    • Upload a draft offer letter/contract, resume for proposed employee, and compensation analysis. If request is for a non-instructional position, a position description and organizational chart are also required.
    • Submit a justification that addresses how the request meets the guidelines.
  3. Short-Term/Temporary Hire

    Short-term or temporary hires need not require a recruitment to be filled. Short-term or temporary appointments are academic staff or University Staff temporary hires that are hired up to 50% or up to six months (1040 hours within a year). Short-Term/Temporary Hires generally are not eligible for WRS and cannot continue beyond the circumstances in which they were hired.

    If a short-term/temporary hire is deemed appropriate, please complete the following steps:

    • Provide employee with a letter of offer outlining the terms of the short-term or temporary appointment (see: Recruitment and Volunteerism Forms).
    • Complete required compliance checks.
    • Obtain applicable new hire forms (e.g., W-4, Direct Deposit, etc.) as needed.
    • Submit an HRS form for processing.
  4. Student Hourly Employment

    Student hourly employees are generally hired in accordance with Department or Division specific criteria. If a recruitment is performed for Student Hourly Employment, it is generally managed using Handshake.

    To submit a student hourly hire for processing, please obtain requisite new hire forms, complete required compliance checks, and submit an HRS form for processing. An offer/contract letter should also be provided to the employee.

  5. Graduate Assistant, Trainee or Post-Doctoral Fellow (Research Associates)

    Graduate Assistants, Trainees, and Post-Doctoral Fellows (Research Associates) are generally hired in accordance with Department or Division specific criteria.

    To submit a Grad Assistant, Trainee, or Post-Doctoral Fellow (Research Associate) hire for processing, please obtain requisite new hire forms, complete required compliance checks, and submit an HRS form for processing. An offer/contract letter should also be provided to the employee.


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