Office of the Provost

Provost's Office Green Hall 35 Campus Avenue Kingston, RI 02881-1303 – 401-874-4410

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Starting a Cluster Hire Search

Once a Cluster proposal has been approved by the Office of the Provost and has received funding, the convener of the Cluster will need to complete a number of tasks before beginning a search for new faculty. Each task is listed below. Please click on the task to learn more about completing it. This page is designed to supplement the Faculty Search Process Suggested Check List provided by Human Resources.

  1. Complete an RF-1 for each new position
  2. Complete a job description for each new position
  3. Complete a USP-1 for new position(s)
  4. Using Screening Questions for a search
  5. Advertising the search for a new position
  6. Setup a search chair user account
  7. Review electronic job posting preview
  8. Determine period of time job posting will remain open online

1. Complete an RF-1 for each new position

  • Download an RF-1 here
  • Enter “Interdisciplinary” as the Department.
  • The Position No. should be entered as “New”. The Budget Office will later assign a position number.
  • Enter “Assistant Professor” as position title.
  • All cluster hire faculty positions will be designated as “Non-Classified”.
  • Each cluster hire faculty position is permanent and, as such, requires no position limitation date.
  • If you are convening a new Cluster, then each position you are filling is also new and no one is being replaced. For this section, indicate “Other” and fill in “New Position” in the reason section.
  • Once this form is completed, it needs to be sent to the Office of the Provost in Green Hall for proper signature. Once signed, the form will be forwarded to Human Resources.
  • Please be sure to attach the completed job description document to the completed RF-1.

2. Complete a job description for each new position

  • This document should be created in a Microsoft Word document so it can be saved for your own personal records.
  • Please include the following in your job description document:
    • A one paragraph job description. From this description, HR should be able to ascertain the duties and responsibilities of the position, the required qualifications for the position, and the preferred qualifications for the position.
    • A statement that the position is interdisciplinary in nature. This is needed so the job posting is not attached to one specific department.
    • An acknowledgement that this is a new position and a position number has yet to be assigned.
    • The Search Chair’s Name.
    • The names of all search committee members.
    • A statement that the position will have an AAUP union affiliation.
    • A sentence explaining that the position is both full-time and permanent.
    • A list of the advertisement outlets which will be utilized during the search.
    • The list of documents you would like each applicant to submit (Resume, Cover Letter, etc.).
    • List the departments collaborating as part of the cluster.
  • Once you have completed this document, please ensure that it is attached to the RF-1 filled out for this position. Submit both the RF-1 and the job description document to the Office of the Provost in Green Hall. Once the RF-1 is signed, both documents will be forwarded to Human Resources.

3. Complete a USP-1 for new position(s)

  • This form cannot be found online. You can obtain a USP-1 form from your College’s business manager or Department’s business office.
  • In section #1 of the USP-1, indicate that the origin of the action is “Interdisciplinary”.
  • In some cases, a single USP-1 form can be filled out for multiple positions. Use section #3 to indicate the number of positions for which you are filling out the form.
  • Again, enter “Interdisciplinary” for section #4. The home department for each cluster hire does not need to be determined until a candidate has been selected.
  • For cluster hires, the title for faculty positions is “Assistant Professor” and the positions are non-classified.
  • Sections #7-10 do not apply to new cluster hires.
  • Sections 16 and 18 are not applicable.
  • The name of the union is AAUP.
  • Section #19 asks for the accounts to which the position’s associated salary and benefits will be charged. For all cluster hire faculty positions, 100-1101-3003 will be listed as the account number. The percentage assigned will be 100%. When a home department arrangement is determined for the position at the time of hire, the account code and associated percentages will be changed to reflect the home department(s).
  • In section #20 please write a brief sentence explaining that this position relates to URI’s Cluster Hire Initiative.
  • The Cluster Convener who will oversee the search for this position is to sign on the “Originator” line.
  • Once signed, the form should be sent to the Office of the Provost for review and signature. From the Provost’s Office, the form is sent to the Budget Office for review and signature and then finally to HR for review and signature.

4. Using Screening Questions for a search

Screening questions are available for use in any search conducted at URI. The questions are derived from the required qualifications listed for a position and are aimed to filter out unqualified candidates who apply. Human Resources reviews the required qualifications for a position and generates a series of “Yes” or “No” questions for applicants to answer as a part of the application process. If an applicant answers any question in such a way which indicates that he/she does not meet a required qualification, their application is discarded even before it is seen by the search committee. These questions will be applied to your search unless you contact HR and specifically request they not be used.

5. Advertising the search for a new position

As mentioned above, HR requires a list of the outlets which will be used for advertising purposes during a search. This list must be submitted as part of the Job Description document. At the beginning of each fiscal year, HR budgets a certain amount of money to be spent on advertising during the year. The cost of advertising for a cluster position opening may exceed the budget provided by HR. Should this occur, the Provost’s Office will work to cover the amount exceeding what is allotted by HR.

6. Setup a search chair user account

The search chair will need to set up a user account by going to .

7. Review electronic job posting preview

Once the RF-1, USP-1, and job description have all been submitted to, and approved by, the proper offices, HR will generate a preview of the electronic job posting which will be located at If you approve the preview, the job will be posted. Any changes made to the preview will need to be approved by HR and Affirmative Action before the revised posting is put on the web.

8. Determine period of time job posting will remain open online

As convener and search committee chair, you may choose to receive applications for a specified length of time, or until the position is filled. You may also keep the job posting open until filled with a “soft” deadline. The “soft” deadline sets a date by which applications must be received in order for candidates to receive full consideration.

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