Attracting Applicants

Attracting Applicants


Before any advertising can take place, authorisation to fill your vacancy must be sought. Your HR Business Partner/Internal Recruiter will be able to advise on the EPAF process if you are unsure. Authorisation will usually involve Finance, HR and the Head of School/Director considering the business need for the role and providing the necessary authorisation to fill the vacancy.


Before going to external advertisment Human Resources will seek to identify if there are any redeployment or reserve candidates. Once this has been exhausted Human Resources will place an external advertisement and will respond to candidates enquiries in relation to the recruitment process.

The Redeployment Portal offers support to existing members of staff who are within six months of their employment with the University coming to an end or who have another reason to find alternative employment within the University (for example due to the closure of a service/unit).

As part of our commitment to maintaining job security for our staff wherever possible, all vacant roles (over three months in duration) are required to be advertised via Redeployment. 

The majority of people looking for roles through Redeployment are those coming to the end of a fixed-term contract, so this can often be a much quicker and easier way of sourcing a suitable candidate who, in most cases, already has substantial and proven experience.

Your HR Business Partner/Internal Recruiter will arrange for your role to be advertised through the Redeployment Portal.

Advertising Internally

If the post isn’t filled through Redeployment it will usually be advertised externally to the wider job market. There may be limited situations where a job can be advertised internally to all University employees in the first instance, and if you believe there are special circumstances that make this desirable for your vacancy, please contact your HR Business Partner/Internal Recruiter to discuss.

There may also be situations where you wish to make a role available for internal development opportunities; for example, you may have a vacancy at a higher grade and already have a number of people within your school or service who have the expertise to take on the role. Again, if this is the case, please discuss it with your HR Business Partner in the first instance.

The following are examples of occasions where public advertisements may not be appropriate.

Academic Management Posts

The positions of Pro-Vice-Chancellors and Dean of the Graduate School shall be advertised externally.  It is the normal practice of the University to trawl internally for Deans at Faculty level, Heads of School and other posts such as Director of Research and Director of Education as these posts are normally of a fixed-term duration. The University, however, reserves the right to advertise such posts externally.


Occasions may arise when there are opportunities for short-medium term career development opportunities.  In these circumstances and where the opportunity is for a period of more than six months, the opportunities will normally be internally trawled within the University.  Where the opportunity is for a period of less than six months, reference should be made to the policy on Employees Temporarily Undertaking Additional Duties. (

Internal Mobility

Occasions may arise to promote permanent career development opportunities and as such permanent positions may be advertised internally. The University has an affirmative action plan in place and our Diversity and Inclusion Unit will advise if an internal trawl is appropriate. 

Restructuring within a School/Directorate

This occurs when new duties are allocated among existing employees and the overall head count within the School/Directorate does not increase.  To advertise these duties publicly could result in an external appointment and thus leave a member of staff in a redundancy situation.  In particular, it must be clearly established that no additional posts have been created and that no vacancy in fact exists.

In circumstances where more than one member of staff could be allocated additional duties which may lead to a regrading, then they must all be considered by the appropriate manager in a systematic and objective manner.  This may, for example, involve a limited internal trawl amongst the eligible staff.


In accordance with the agreed Redundancy Procedures all reasonable measures will be taken to avoid redundancy.  If a vacancy within the University can be filled by an employee, who would otherwise be made redundant, then this vacancy does not need to be advertised and the otherwise redundant employee may be redeployed.  Redeployment of staff will not occur when the vacant post is considered to be specialist in nature, for example, requiring specific qualifications and/or experience.  Guidance on the application of this scheme can be found in the Redundancy Procedure.

Extension to a Temporary or Fixed-term Contract

If a temporary or fixed-term contract is nearing completion and, at the same time, another similar vacancy arises within the University, an employee may be offered this vacancy and his/her contract extended.  An extension may involve a new project but will involve similar duties and, the employment must be continuous.

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Writing your advert

The advert should summarise the role and the key requirements in a paragraph, helping candidates quickly decide if the role is of interest. The advert, as with the summary, should aim to promote the role to suitable candidates and should concentrate on the role. Any information you wish to include about the department or University should follow this.

Be aware that some online advertisers may impose restrictions on the size and format of the advert, so you may have to work around these if you wish to advertise with that provider. Your Internal Recruiter will be able to advise you on any restrictions in place.

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Social Media

We encourage you as the hiring managers (and your colleagues) to use your professional social media presence to advertise roles to your connections online. You are likely to know other people within your profession and this is a much more targeted way of highlighting your vacancy to potential applicants.

Whether you use, Twitter, Linkedin, Researchgate or any other platform, keep the message simple.

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Recruiting Non EU, EEA or Swiss Nationals

For positions where we may need to recruit non-EU, EEA or Swiss nationals, we have to advertise the position for at least 30 days through a minimum of two relevant media sources. The role must also have a suitable rate of pay and skill level as defined by the UK Visa and Immigration Service. For example, a role requiring PhD level skills would usually meet this criteria. This is in order to satisfy the ‘resident labour market test’ required for the University to support visa applications for individuals who currently do not have the right to work in the UK. Always take advice from your local HR team with regards to this, or you may not ultimately be able to appoint your preferred candidate.