Human Resources Department

Step 1: Position Approval & Announcement

It is important for members of a search committee to have a basic understanding of the applicable employment laws affecting the committee's actions and decisions. A brief summary of employment laws can be found in the Appendices. A Hiring Procedures Summary checklist is listed in the Forms section. The search process is described below in more detail.

Note:  For Non-Faculty Exempt positions, a review of the position description should be done by the hiring manager to ensure that it accurately reflects current department needs. See “Job Descriptions and Announcements” section below.) The description should accurately reflect the duties of the position yet be written broadly enough to encourage a wide and inclusive candidate pool.  If changes are needed, an action to "Institutional Update/Review a Position" in Yourfuture prior to initiating the recruitment.

Position Request Approval

When a vacancy exists, the following steps are completed for approval to announce the position:
  1. The dean or director completes a “Request for Approval to Recruit” form (paper) and a new action in YourFuture: Recruit an Existing Position. (If it is a new NFE position, the position must first be established in YourFuture: NFE-1 Establish a New Position.” See “Job Descriptions and Announcements” section below.
  2. The Dean/Department Head approves, Budget Office verifies availability of funding and FTE, and the Adminstrator approves the title and rank, salary, funding and program requirements.
  3.  Human Resources reviews the announcement, approves, and posts to YourFuture and

Vice Presidential Responsibilities

Identifying the search committee.  The appropriate vice president or designee shall appoint a search committee to consist of 3 - 7 members, and will include persons of both genders and (where practical) minority members. The individuals selected will reflect a broad knowledge base of job-related qualifications. One member will be designated chair. See Search Committee section for discussion of the responsibilities of the chair and committee.

Recruitment.   See Advertising Sources in the Appendices for a suggested advertising list.

Job Descriptions and Announcements

Whenever an administrative professional position becomes available, a job description should be updated so that it is accurate in relation to actual functions and duties. To make needed changes, initiate a new action in YourFuture – “NFE – 2. Institutional Update/Review a Position. 

The job description has a number of purposes: It serves as evidence of essential job functions, is the basis from which job-related screening criteria are derived, provides a guide for clear and informative advertising, and serves as the basis for performance evaluations.

  • The job description should include:
    • Position Title;
    • The reporting structure;
    • Primary Responsibilities of the position;
    • Essential Job Functions (the individual who holds the position must be able to perform unaided or with the assistance of reasonable accommodation--see Appendix 2 for information on the ADA);
    • Qualifications (basic academic and experiential requirements and desirable qualifications beyond those required);
    •  Supervision (of professional and support staff, student employees).

All qualifications and/or requirements specified in a position description must be job-related.

Job announcements have three objectives:

  1. To give necessary information about the position;
  2. To attract the interest of suitable applicants; and
  3. To motivate the suitable applicants to respond. 

All job announcements must be approved by the Vice President and the Director of Human Resources to insure it is in compliance with affirmative action and equal opportunity objectives. All positions are announced in area newspapers by the Marketing & Communications Office. 

AA/EEO Statement

The following standard statement MUST be included in every position announcement:

If special accommodations for application are necessary because of a disability, please request them by contacting ________.

Black Hills State University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer (or AA/EOE)

Inclusive Language

Black Hills State University's commitment to diversity is indicated it its Core Values, including embracing the multi-dimensions of human differences.  To demonstrate this commitment and to increase the applicant pool, one of these additions should be included with the standard statement:

Consistent with the University’s commitment to diversity, persons from traditionally underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

BHSU is committed to a learning environment that actively seeks to support students, faculty and staff from diverse backgrounds.


All qualifications must be strictly job related. The announcement should distinguish between required and preferred qualifications. Degree requirements should be clearly defined.

If a specific discipline(s) are mentioned, an applicant who holds a degree in a different discipline may not be considered. For example, if the announcement requires a doctorate in Psychology, an applicant with a doctorate in medical sciences cannot be considered. To avoid problems/questions at the screening stage of the search, consider using phrases like:

Doctorate in Psychology or equivalent -- instead of PhD in Psychology.

To demonstrate BHSU’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, you may choose to use a phrase such as:

Experience with a variety of teaching methods and/or curricular perspectives.

Demonstrated success working with diverse faculty and student populations.

Experience working in a diverse workplace.

To provide more latitude in decisions on rank , it is suggested that the following language be used as appropriate:

Faculty rank is commensurate with qualifications and experience.

ABD’s may be considered at instructor level with expectation of completion of doctorate degree within one year.

Additional Materials/Documents
It is standard practice to request a letter of application, curriculum vita or resume, brief biographical sketch, statement on research and teaching, and names of references. Do not request letters of reference, as the content may adversely impact the committee’s ability to be objective in their evaluation of the candidates. You may also want to ask candidates to provide a description of their experience with diversity issues, teaching diverse student populations, or working in a multicultural environment.

The deadline for faculty and/or NFE applications should be no sooner than 14-30 days after the position announcement appears in a national publication. To preserve the option of accepting late applications or extending the search, use statements such as the following:

Applications received by (date) will be assured consideration.

Review of applications will begin (date). The search will remain open until the position is filled.


Late applications will not have to be discarded, regardless of qualifications, and re-advertising is less likely to be necessary.

Note: It is important that all applications received be treated uniformly.  If the recruitment is "open until filled," and an application received on the same day the department is prepared to make an offer, the application must receive the same screening and consideration as the other applicants.

Any additional advertising and mailings (i.e., mailings to other institutions outside the state or advertising with placement services or professional associations and/or journals) is the responsibility of the committee or department after approval of expenditures by the Dean/Department Head. These recruiting expenses will generally be charged to the recruiting department.