This document is designed to assist hiring managers and search committees with their responsibilities and to ensure compliance with University policy and employment law as well as ensuring non-discriminatory practices in hiring. 

In accordance with State of Florida Statutes, Florida Atlantic defines a search committee as an advisory group only.  The search committee assists the hiring authority by gathering information and reviewing applications. The search committee does not develop selection criteria. The search committee does not select or reject applicants.  The search committee does not rank applicants or make hiring decision recommendations.  Rather, the search committee presents the qualifications to the hiring manager in a prescribed manner. 

The benefits of a search committee include: 

  • Supporting the University’s goals to select the best applicant for each vacancy
  • Demonstrating the University’s commitment to building a culture of diversity and inclusiveness 
  • Ensuring applicants are evaluated fairly, based on the same set of criteria 

Unless a search committee is waived in accordance with FAU Personnel policy, a search committee is required for all positions at the level of Assistant Director and above. The search committee members must be identified by the time the recruitment is processed.  Hiring managers may wish to convene the search committee to assist in the development of the position description and posting requirements prior to recruitment. 

It is recommended that a search committee be comprised of a minimum of three (3) to a recommended maximum of five (5) members. Limiting the committee size makes it easier to schedule meetings and coordinate efforts. Members should be of an appropriate professional level commensurate with the recruited position. 

The following are some criteria to consider when selecting committee members: 

  • Composition of the committee members with regard to diversity
  • Availability of members to attend all committee meetings
  • Level of experience and knowledge of the committee member relevant to the vacant position
  • Representation of appropriate constituencies by selecting from the following areas, as relevant:
    Other departments
    Support Staff
    Community representatives
    Human Resources 

The role of the Hiring Authority in the search and screening process will be the following: 

  • Reviewing the position description, and development of criteria to enable the committee to review applications
  • Completion of the position and posting requisition in PeopleAdmin
  • Designating  the committee chairperson and selecting committee members
  • Provide requirements to the Chairperson in order to develop a grid outlining minimum qualifications and other criteria for the position
  • Provide the chairperson and committee with its charge to serve in a fact finding and advisory capacity only
  • Informing the committee and ensuring all University policies are followed to provide appropriate and equitable treatment of all applicants and materials
  • Reviewing the submitted grid of applicants
  • Identifying candidates for interview
  • Performing finalist interviews
  • Performing final reference checks on identified candidates.  This task may be delegated to the committee Chairperson
  • Identifying selected candidate, updating PeopleAdmin applicant statuses, requesting background check and extending offer of employment
  • Preparing all new hire paperwork and submit to Recruitment Services office. 

When selecting the Chairperson for a search committee it is important to consider the skills required and the demands on the individual’s time.  A successful chairperson will have demonstrated leadership skills, good communication and organization skills.  The chairperson is responsible for keeping the search on track from inception to conclusion.  He/She may be called upon to mediate varying points of view of other committee members. The chairperson will represent the University to the campus and community and will respond to requests for information about the search process. Most importantly a chairperson must have the time available to devote to the search and selection process. 

 The role of the Chairperson will be to: 

  • Inform and reinforce the committee members of their roles and responsibilities as advisors only to the hiring authority
  • Ensure compliance with University policy, employment law and ensure non-discriminatory practices in hiring
  • Publish and update committee meeting calendar
  • Provide information to the committee members regarding posted requirements of the position
  • Provide leadership to committee members during review of applications and completion of pool grid
  • Present the completed grid of the applicant pool to the hiring manager
  • Assist hiring authority and committee members in the development of appropriate interview questions (Interviewing Resources)
  • Coordinate interview appointments with the hiring authority
  • Perform reference checks on candidates as directed by the Hiring Authority 

The role of committee is strictly advisory and will operate under the direction of the hiring authority.

The committee will: 

  • Assist by reviewing the application materials submitted by all applicants
  • Assist the chairperson by compiling a grid of all applicants including their qualifications and other criteria as defined by the hiring authority 

          See the following sample qualification grid: 

Candidate Name

Degree Info

Relevant Experience

Technical Skills/MS Office

Organizational Skills


  • Prepare interview questions with assistance of the Chairperson (Interviewing Resources)
  • Conduct interviews of applicants with the assistance of the Chairperson and under the direction of the Hiring Authority
  • Upon completion of all interviews update the applicant grid for the Chairperson/Hiring Authority, indicating each applicant’s competencies in such areas as job-related experience and skills. The Hiring Authority is solely responsible for identifying the finalist(s) and finalizing the hiring decision 

On Boarding 

  • After a final candidate is identified, the hiring manager or designee must change all of the applicant statuses in PeopleAdmin and request a hiring review by the Recruitment Service department.  At this stage HR will approve the proposed starting salary and Equal Opportunity Programs will review the candidate selection.  An Recruitment Services representative will notify the hiring manager of approvals. 
  • The hiring manager makes a verbal offer of employment contingent upon a satisfactory background check.  When the applicant accepts, the hiring manager requests the appropriate background check through email from the Recruitment Services department. The Recruitment Services department will initiate the background check and notify the hiring manager when completed.
  • The hiring department prepares an Administrative, Managerial and Professional (AMP) offer letter, PAF and any other required documentation.  All documentation must be forwarded to the FAU Recruitment Services department no later than Wednesday at 5:00 p.m. prior to the desired Monday start date of the new employee 

The role of Human Resources will be the following: 

  • Assist the hiring manager in developing the appropriate position description
  • Review posting summary and qualifications for posting
  • Place outside advertisement when requested
  • Review submitted application documentation for qualifications
  • Assist applicants during the posting period
  • Release final pool to hiring manager
  • Attend initial committee meetings to assist members in proper practices and the development of appropriate questions.  Attend future meetings as requested
  • Advise committee on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other employment law as it pertains to recruitment
  • Perform hiring reviews which include approval of requested starting salary and EOP approval of final candidate
  • Initiate background check on selected candidate and notify hiring manager when complete
  • Assist hiring department with preparation of required documentation to finalize the hiring process
  • Finalize the recruitment in PeopleAdmin
  • Notify non-selected applicants of completion of hiring process
  • Process hiring paperwork and notify applicant of New Hire Orientation 


Participating search committee members must accept the responsibility to refrain from discussing any candidate’s name or status in the applicant pool.  Committee members should not engage in conversation with any non-committee individual within or outside the University regarding applicants or committee activities.  Requests for information should be referred to the committee Chairperson to be handled in accordance with FAU’s Public Records Request process. 

Americans with Disabilities Act: 

Florida Atlantic University is an Equal Opportunity/Equal Access Institution. It is the policy of Florida Atlantic University to comply with the American with Disabilities Act in every phase of the employment process. The University will extend reasonable accommodation, if requested, to qualified candidates with disabilities who are applicants for employment in order to allow the individuals equal access to the University’s application, interviewing and selection process.  Applicants are not required to note the presence of a disability on their application. However, any applicant who requires reasonable accommodation in the application and/or interview process due to disability must make the request at least five (5) working days prior to the time the accommodation is needed. Accordingly hiring officials and search committees will adhere to all applicable federal and state laws, regulations and guidelines with respect to providing reasonable accommodations to afford equal employment opportunities to qualified individuals with disabilities.  Reasonable accommodation will be provided in a timely and cost effective manner.  Employment opportunities will not be denied because of the need to provide reasonable accommodations (FAU ADA information).  Requests for accommodation should be referred to the Human Resources 561-297-3058. 

Please refer to the list of additional resources below to ensure compliance with Federal and state laws as well as University policies and procedures. 

 Last Modified 11/8/16