Dear Danforth Campus Faculty and Staff,
I hope you’re managing as well as can be expected during this very challenging time. As we continue to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re constantly reviewing new developments and making adjustments to university policies and procedures. I’m writing to you today with an important update about what our approach to hiring new employees will be during this time.
While we remain under alternate operations, we will be handling many of our staffing activities differently than we would under normal conditions.Earlier this month, we asked managers to develop staffing plans for alternate operations, including moving to remote work for all employees whose physical presence is not required for essential on-campus services. Thank you to everyone for your flexibility and commitment to developing and implementing these plans in a short timeframe. I know this has been a very stressful time for many of you as you juggle work and family obligations, but this shift is necessary so we can keep our community safe and continue to fulfill our mission of excellence in teaching, research, and patient care as we manage this unprecedented situation.
As we look ahead to what may be coming next, it’s important for us to be forward-thinking and take reasonable steps to protect our financial security. With this goal in mind, as well as awareness of the challenges of on-boarding new employees during alternate operations, effective immediately we are instituting a hiring freeze for the Danforth Campus and the Central Fiscal Unit (CFU). This interim policy will go into effect today, and will have very limited exceptions. We did not make this decision lightly, but I feel very strongly that we have a responsibility to do all we can to ensure that the university can continue to fulfill its mission as seamlessly as possible. We can only accomplish this by carefully managing our resources.
We will implement this policy as follows:
- All current job postings for the Danforth Campus and the CFU will be taken down.
- New job postings for the Danforth schools and CFU areas that report to the provost will require approval by the provost.
- Postings for all other areas of the CFU will require approval by the executive vice chancellor and chief administrative officer.
- Later today, Human Resources will provide management with details on how to submit these exception requests, as well as how to proceed with a select number of previously approved job postings that meet the criteria for exceptions to the new policy. This communication will also address positions funded by external sources (e.g., grants and contracts) or by faculty startup packages.
- Offers that have been made will be honored, but no new offers should be made without approval from the provost or executive vice chancellor and chief administrative officer.
- The School of Medicine will have its own policy regarding job postings and will share those details soon.
We know this will be disappointing news for those of you who have been putting in extra effort while waiting for additional staff members to be hired in your departments, and managers who have been working hard to fill open positions. It’s our hope that this will be a temporary setback, and that we’ll be able to revisit this policy quickly once we return to normal operations. In the meantime, we appreciate your continued support and patience as we take the necessary steps to keep the university running and thriving as much as possible under these difficult circumstances. My continued best wishes to you and your families.
Andrew D. Martin