For full details about the University's Recruitment and Selection processes, please read our Policy on the Recruitment and Selection of Staff.
For a full listing of vacancies at the University, please see our main Jobs website.
The University’s e-recruitment site is run by a third party. You must register an account to apply for a vacancy (including internal and redeployment-only vacancies).
Log in via Shibboleth single sign-on using your normal University IT username and password. If this is your first time using the system as Recruiter, you may need to have access set-up. If you are unable to log in or view information, please contact the Recruitment Team on 01224 273500 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Guidance for Recruiters
If you have never been involved in recruitment previously, you must complete the mandatory Recruitment and Selection Training Online Module (you should arrange a refresher course if your original training was more than 3 years ago). Please contact Recruitment to get enrolled on the training module.
This form should be completed for all posts, however funded, and all increases in FTE or extensions of contract:
- Proposed Expenditure on Staffing (please read the accompanying Process Summary for further guidance)
Once you have received the relevant authorisation, you will be asked to assist in the preparation of the following documents:
- Job Description
- Further Particulars including Person Specification (basic template)
- Job Advert
- Skills Matrix - Recruiting Managers Checklist
- Selection Committee Panel Member - pro-forma for notes
For the eRecruiter Manager quick guide please click here.
For complete eRecruiter Manager Guidance notes please click here.
Summary of the timescale you can expect during the recruitment and selection process (new appointments):
- Post approved by Restructuring Committee
- Job Scored/Matched (2 days)
- Redeployment/Internal Job Boards (2 weeks)
- Internal/External Job Boards (2-4 weeks depending on visa status of the role)
- Shortlisting of candidates (timescale at panel’s discretion)
- Interviews (minimum of 1 week notice for candidates)
- Offer made to appointee
All members of staff who are involved in Recruitment (including on a shortlisting and sitting on a Selection Panel), must undertake a mandatory online Recruitment and Selection course. To arrange to enroll upon this course, please contact: HRRecruitment@abdn.ac.uk
- Eligibility to Work in the UK
Please click here to view Acceptable Documents under the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006.
- Taking Notes
Taking notes in interviews
All panel members should take notes on candidates’ answers during interviews to aid decision-making. Notes should be based on the Further Particulars and Person Specification which should have been used to frame the interview questions. The ‘pro forma for notes’ can be used to aid note taking and decision making.
Notes should be used by the panel to support the decision-making process. This should result in an objective, evidence-based process.
Why should I do this?
There are three main reasons why it is important to take notes during an interview:
1. To ensure good practice, as decisions will be based on objective evidence and not subjective judgements
2. To protect the organisation from discrimination claims, as decisions will be clearly evidenced against selection criteria
3. To provide appropriate feedback to unsuccessful candidates.
Benefits of note-taking
- Helps the panel to be more objective and fair
- Gives the panel a level of security and confidence in their decisions
- Helps to ensure all candidates are assessed equally
- Mitigates against the possibility of unconscious bias
Guidance on taking notes in interviews
Before the interview begins you should ensure:
- Each member of the panel has a copy of the note-taking template as issued by the University (available here)
- Panel members are clear on the questions they are going to ask, and how these relate to the selection criteria
- It is agreed between panel members that the person asking a question will not write down notes on the candidates answer – other panel members can record their notes on their forms
During the interview you should ensure:
- The candidate is briefed before the interview starts that panel members will be taking notes
- To record objective evidence in your notes form – do not write down subjective evidence or judgements. (i.e. ‘Candidate offered a clear response to the question, with supporting evidence linking to the selection criteria’ as opposed to, ‘Candidate is confident in the experience they can bring to the role’)
Dos and Don’ts
- Do comment objectively on candidates (i.e. ‘The Panel agreed that the candidate met the educational criteria for the position.’)
- Do tailor your questions to the Person Specification, this will provide evidence for informed decision making. (i.e. ‘An essential criteria of the position is to be able to manage projects, please tell us about a time where you have managed a project successfully.’)
- Do ensure that you keep notes on why candidates aren’t suitable. In certain circumstances, these can be requested by and sent to unsuccessful candidates for feedback purposes.
- Do ensure your notes are legible or typed up where possible.
- Do be honest and respectful in your language used when note taking. (i.e. ‘the candidate presented well, however their understanding could have been more advanced’)
- Do support statements with examples where possible. (i.e. ‘the candidate presented well, however their understanding could be more advanced – this was demonstrated when the panel questioned the candidate on their presentation to probe further into their knowledge. The panel feels that more background research was necessary’)
- Do try to maintain eye contact whilst note taking.
- Don’t write subjective statements (i.e. ‘I thought the candidate seemed disinterested’)
- Don’t assess candidates against each other, assess them against the person specification.
- Don’t use generic or outdated Further Particulars or Person Specifications. Present detailed information about the requirements of the role to ensure effective questioning and to provide the candidate with ample opportunity to showcase their skills and knowledge. (i.e. if a requirement of the role is to hold an undergraduate degree, should it be in a certain or specific area related to the position?)
- Don’t write rude or inappropriate comments about candidates. (i.e. ‘The candidate was dressed strangely.’)
- Don’t write comments which refer to legally protected characteristics referred to below. (i.e. ‘the candidate seemed too old to adapt to a changing environment.’)
After the interview
- Panel members should take time to discuss their evaluation of the candidate, supported by their notes
- Keep accurate notes of the decision making process, including clear reasons for offering the position to one candidate and for rejecting the others. Bear in mind that unsuccessful candidates may request feedback on their performance. If you are not certain that your notes are representative of the views of the panel, read them back to the group and invite additional comments
- The panel should use the notes recorded on the template as the basis for a decision by consensus
- At the end of the interview process, the convenor is responsible for collecting the individual panel member notes which should then be scanned and sent to HR immediately following the selection committee meeting. HR will retain the interview notes for 6 months.
- All interview candidates should be rated via eRecruiter prior to any offer being made by HR
The Data Protection Act 1998 gives candidates the right to see notes made about them during interview. HR will retain the interview notes for a period of six months, and they will be provided to candidates upon request. Please be aware that there is the potential for your notes to be seen by the candidates you interview.
Equality legislation protects candidates from discrimination in the recruitment and selection process. The Equality Act 2010 provides protection based on nine protected characteristics:
- Religion and Belief
- Pregnancy and Maternity
- Gender Reassignment
- Sexual Orientation
- Marriage/Civil Partnerships
If a candidate believes they have been discriminated against on the basis of one or more of the protected characteristics, they could take legal action against the University. To reduce the risk of this happening, selection panels should:
- Undertake the specific equality training for selection panels. This is mandatory for any member of staff involved in recruitment and selection. To access this training, please contact the Recruitment Team
- Ensure interview questions are based on the person specification
- Refrain from asking questions regarding the protected characteristics, unless relevant to the post
- Assess candidates objectively
- Refer to the Briefing on Unconscious Bias (in development)
- Be mindful of their own diversity profile, in particular the panel should be gender-balanced.
The University operates an optional Guaranteed Interview Scheme for disabled candidates. If the selection panel is notified that a candidate has applied under the Scheme, then they must interview that candidate if they meet the Essential criteria in the person specification. Some disabled candidates may require an adjustment to the selection process to allow them to fully participate. HR will notify the selection panel of any adjustment which have been requested by a candidate. To find out more about the Equality Act 2010 please see link here.
Help and support on any of the issues discussed in this factsheet is available through the Recruitment Team.
Watch this presentation for further guidance on interview note-taking.
- Vulnerable Group Protection
The Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme ensures that those who either have regular contact with vulnerable groups through the workplace, or who are otherwise in regulated work, do not have a history of inappropriate behaviour. It excludes people who are known to be unsuitable, on the basis of past behaviour, from working with children and/or protected adults and detects those who become unsuitable while in the workplace.
There are five steps to assessing whether an individual is doing regulated work. This involves the consideration of:
- Who they are working with?
- What are their duties?
- Are any of those duties an ‘activity’, under the 2007 Act?
- If so, is the ‘activity’ part of their normal duties?
- If so, are there any ‘incidental’ exceptions which might apply?
Disclosure Scotland has set up a useful assessment tool which guides you in detail through these 5 steps.
To reflect legislative changes, our Protection of Vulnerable Groups Policy confirms that if a position requires a PVG check to be undertaken then the appointment is conditional upon the clearance and no work can be undertaken until this process is complete.
For full details please read the University's Protection of Vulnerable Groups Policy:
- Temporary Services
‘Temporary Services’ refers to the appointment of individuals on a casual or hourly-paid basis to resource periods of pressure, unexpected absence or specialist expertise within the University.
For full details please read the following document:
The following forms should be completed for temporary services appointments and authorised by the Head of School/Section or nominated Deputy. Once fully completed and authorised, they should be sent to Human Resources:
Payment for the work undertaken will be processed by Payroll on receipt of appropriately authorised timesheets:
To ensure prompt payment is made to individuals for the work they have undertaken, it is important to adhere to payroll submission deadline dates. Please note that payments will not be made retrospectively.