Follow the guidelines below to create a new staff position. Each position description must be approved by the GIM Administrator, the Department of Medicine Personnel Director and Human Resources before being posted for recruitment so please allow sufficient time for this process. If there is a need to hire within your group or section please fill out the GIM Requisition for UWHires form and send it to Rhea Quimson.
The basic timeline from job creation to hire of an employee.
- Unit determines that a need exists for hiring new staff.
- Discussion/approval of funding sources.
- Job description is developed (further information below).
- Unit notifies Division that a new position is needed. Requirements (forms) for submission in UWHires are discussed and provided.
- Requisition is entered into UWHires; approval process includes Division Administrator and Department of Medicine Personnel Director.
- Compensation Office reviews the job description to determine appropriate title, salary, etc.
- If approved, requisition is forwarded to Human Resources for posting and forwarding of resumes. This process is slightly different for professional, classified and hourly positions.
- Applications are reviewed; interviews are conducted; offer is submitted to HR for approval; approved offer is made to applicant.
- HR confirms hiring via email; new employee is entered into payroll system.
Types of Positions
There are several categories of staff at the University of Washington.
- Professional Staff
- Professional Staff – Project Appointments
- Professional Staff – Hourly Limited Term Assignments
- Classified Staff
- Direct HireTemporary/Hourly (in classified titles)
- Fixed Duration Appointment (in classified titles)
Developing the Job Description
This step is the most important aspect of new positions and should be given careful consideration. Development of an accurate, complete job description will help to ensure that the hiring process goes smoothly and is completed in a reasonable length of time.
NOTE: If the position is a replacement, and the duties have not changed, using the same job description which was used to hire the departing person will speed up the hiring process significantly.
In an ideal world, each time a new grant is funded, there would be a review of the positions requested in the proposal, consideration given to whether current staff will assume some of the positions and/or duties, will share current and new duties, or a new position will need to be created.
When the proposal was prepared, a decision was made on the level of the positions needed so that an appropriate salary could be requested in the proposal. It is a good rule of thumb to follow the proposal as much as possible so that we do not exceed our budget allocations. This will not always be possible – but it is important not only for budgetary purposes but compliance purposes as well. We have had cases in audits where we were asked to explain why a position was hired that was not requested in the budget, and have had to provide job description and justification for the need of the position. When we do create a position not listed in the proposal, a note to the budget file would go a long way to satisfying an auditor in a potential future audit.
It is extremely critical that positions with similar duties have the same job classification, educational requirements and salary range. Specific salaries within the range will vary depending upon an individual’s qualifications, but equity is critical. An organization chart is extremely helpful in this process and is required by the Division Administrator for review each time a new requisition is processed and as a part of the requisition itself. The new position should be shown with a box on the most current organization chart.
Writing the Job Description – Classified Staff
Consider the following:
- What is the position’s primary purpose?
- What are the general duties?
- Are there any duties that are unique to this position?
- Does the position have lead or supervisory responsibilities?
- What are the REQUIRED skills, knowledge, abilities or experience?
Each classified job title has established educational and experience requirements. We must follow these guidelines in our requests. View the complete list of Classified job titles and descriptions on the Human Resources Web site.
Writing the Job Description – Professional Staff
Consider the following:
- What are the exemption criteria that would make the position a professional staff position?
- What are the entry qualifications: Education and work experience?
- What is the level of difficulty in thinking and problem solving?
- At what level will personal interactions occur?
- How much supervision will this position be responsible for?
- What are the working conditions, i.e. work schedule, deadlines, etc.
- What is the impact of this position on the University of Washington?
Hiring Staff Short Term
There are a number of options for hiring staff on a short term basis including:
Guidelines for Writing Job Descriptions
Do not combine two positions into one because of funding where the parts are not equal. In other words, if a position will work for more than one project, duties on all projects should be at the same level. Most importantly, do not combine classified staff duties with professional staff duties.
The level of duties and educational requirements should be in balance. There are few classified staff positions that require master’s degrees so don’t write the duties at that level.
Do not determine a job title based on the salary you want to pay. In other words, if you want to pay a lower salary because of budgetary constraints, then the duties need to be consistent with the salary level. This can work in the reverse as well – do not request a high salary if the job duties do not warrant it.
Professional staff positions are set by grade. Be familiar with what each grade means – i.e. we typically hire at Grades 7, 8 and 9. Differences are in duties, educational requirements, work experience – all of which then determine the salary range. These are not assigned randomly or arbitrarily.
When the Division and the Compensation Office review the position request, all decisions are based on duties. If the grade, salary and educational requirements do not match the duties, those are where the adjustments occur. The duties are considered to be the component on which all other pieces are determined. This is why developing a thorough, accurate job description is critical.
Do not make every position a professional staff level. In any unit, there should be a greater number of classified than professional staff. Remember that professional staff positions should be the exception, not the routine choice.
Issues Faced During the Review Process
It is important to remember that the primary role of the administrative coordinator in General Internal Medicine in the recruitment process is to provide assistance to the hiring unit in understanding the process, and ensuring that all required forms are completed. It is the responsibility of the Division Administrator to review the overall request to ensure that duties are reasonable and are consistent with educational requirements and salary. The Division staff are not in a position to determine whether the duties actually describe the work to be performed – that is the responsibility of the hiring unit.
Examples of issues noted in the review process are:
- Exactly the same job description being used for two different job titles.
- Imbalance between duties and educational requirements and/or salary requested.
- Use of inappropriate budget numbers.
- Having working title only with no information on salary expected, or where the position fits into the overall unit.
- Miscommunication within the hiring unit resulting in conflicting information about the position.
- Level of responsibility of the position too high – for example: saying that the position has ultimate responsibility for ensuring that a project is carried out according to sponsor’s expectations. This responsibility actually rests with the PI.
- Discrepancies between job description and supporting documents.