Director of Human Resources

Apply now Job no: 500565
Work type: Staff Full Time
Campus: UMass Amherst
Department: Dean - Engineering
Pay Grade: 27
Categories: Human Resources

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.


Job Summary

The Director of Human Resources for the College of Engineering directs, manages, and oversees human resource functions for the College of approximately 114 faculty, 80 administrative and technical staff, post-docs, graduate students, temporary employees and student hourly workers. Serves as the primary resource for the College regarding all matters relative to campus personnel policies and procedures, and serves as the primary liaison with the Provost’s office, central Human Resources, and other campus administrative offices relating to personnel matters. Works with Department Heads to oversee Administrative Officers’ work duties related to human resources matters. Works closely with, and provides backup to the College’s Director of Finance.


Essential Functions

  • Identifies immediate and long-term staffing needs. Makes College-level staffing recommendations based on the growth of degree programs, trends or changes in the field of Engineering, and strategic goals. Develops staffing projections based on upcoming retirements, leaves, etc. Meets annually with key groups of employees and senior staff to define staffing needs and brainstorm solutions. Prioritizes new positions based on the strategic goals of the College and makes recommendations to the Dean and provides cost/benefit estimates. Oversees the development of recruitment strategies, identifies ways to strengthen applicant pools, and manages the personnel requisition process.  Manages the offer process.  Provides search committee members with guidance and training on relevant recruitment processes. Responsible for ensuring that the College complies with all State and Federal regulations as well as University search procedures.
  • Advises the Dean, Associate Deans, Heads, and other managers on all classification and compensation policies, guidelines, and procedures.  Works with managers within the College to develop clear, accurate, and results-oriented job descriptions for all positions and oversees all classification requests. Ensures FLSA compliance. Makes compensation recommendations to managers based on employees in similar positions within our College or the University as well as trends within our field or the market.  Works with managers to prepare high salary justifications. Oversees the equity review process for the College and works with central HR to ensure that the compensation of the College's employees is competitive (allows for the hiring and retention of the best employees) and meets strategic goals. Works directly with the Dean and Heads to evaluate faculty salary increase requests; provides data, analyzes any inequities, and makes recommendations.
  • Reviews and approves all personnel paperwork such as requisitions, search records, offer and acceptance forms, personnel action forms, reappointments, leaves, etc. on behalf of the Head or Dean. Ensures that personnel actions are done in accordance with established campus policies, procedures, and guidelines. Responsible for interpreting all university or union policies related to personnel actions such as sabbaticals, promotion & tenure, etc. Guides managers and the Personnel Committees on relevant personnel procedures; Ensures that processes such as promotion and tenure are done in a consistent manner and that any recommendations are thorough, accurate, and redacted to ensure reviewer anonymity.
  • Manages personnel deadlines for the College; creates and manages databases and other tracking tools for monitoring all personnel actions such as staff & faculty evaluations, reappointments, sabbaticals and other leaves, etc. and their related deadlines.
  • Designs and manages the faculty and staff on-boarding process. Facilitates College-focused new faculty orientation annually or biannually as needed. Designs and manages the employee exit process including the facilitation of exit interviews for faculty and staff. Provides recommendations to the Dean and Heads regarding ways to improve the on-boarding process and ways to reduce turnover.
  • Ensures that managers have the tools and information needed to properly supervise their employees. Provides advice on how to communicate work expectations, establish performance goals, and conduct performance appraisals. Provides periodic training sessions for managers on how to properly complete the performance review process that has been put in place by the University. Training sessions will also include guidance on what to say/not say on performance reviews and how to develop S.M.A.R.T. goals with employees that work towards the strategic goals of the College and University. Ensure that managers complete relevant probationary period and annual performance reviews for all faculty and staff.
  • Counsels and advises the Dean, Heads, and other managers on ways to identify, address, and facilitate solutions for employee issues. Advises managers on how to document performance or other issues and how to follow the progressive discipline process. Coordinates due process hearings and works with Labor Relations, Union Representatives, Managers, and Employees to resolve any issues. Serves as the College's primary liaison with the Labor Relations office.  Has principal responsibility to manage compliance with collective bargaining provisions.
  • Serves as a point person for staff who have inquiries or concerns about terms, benefits, or conditions of employment. Assists managers with conducting meetings to resolve grievances or employee complaints.  Conducts investigations as needed. May represent the Dean or Head in grievances or in negotiations with unions.
  • Assesses College of Engineering training or workplace development needs and develops, implements, and manages appropriate trainings or development programs to fit the strategic goals of the College and University.
  • Works to create a diverse and inclusive workplace for all faculty, staff, and students. Ensures that all personnel practices are valid and reliable, and do not have adverse impact on minority groups.
  • Designs, develops, and facilitates community-building events and activities for faculty and staff in an effort to improve communication, relationships, and morale. Focuses on initiatives that will reduce turnover or will help us achieve our strategic goals.
  • Maintains working knowledge of, and ensures adherence to, University, state, and federal human resources laws and policies as well as collective bargaining agreements relevant to the College of Engineering.
  • Oversees HR-related work performed by other College staff such as the Dean's Assistant, Administrative Officers, Grants and Contracts Coordinators, Graduate Programs Manager, etc. Ensures that all HR work is coordinated effectively and kept confidential.
  • Compiles and analyzes data, and creates reports as required by the Dean, Heads, accreditation agencies, the Provost’s office, Human Resources, external Engineering organizations, etc. Examples include diversity or affirmative action reports, turnover rates, overtime expenses, etc.
  • Provides College Director of Finance with information on personnel actions that might impact budget projections as requested.
  • Develops collaborative working relationships with central HR; Serves as the liaison between the College and the Provost's office, Compensation, Equal Opportunity and Diversity, Labor Relations, Payroll, Benefits, and various other offices on campus.
  • Communicates policy changes to the Dean, Heads, Managers, etc. as procedures change or new policies are put into place. Ensures changes are implemented on schedule.
  • Safeguards and maintains confidential personnel records on behalf of the College.


Other Functions

  • Performs related duties as assigned or required to meet Department, Executive Area/Division, and University goals and objectives. 
  • Works closely with, and provides backup to the college’s Director of Finance.


 Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Bachelor's degree (Human Resources, Management, or a related field preferred) with at least 5 years of experience in Human Resources.
  • Previous experience working in a managerial or supervisory capacity.
  • Demonstrated working knowledge of human resources practices, policies, and procedures.
  • Ability to work both independently and to be part of an effective team with a highly cooperative and collaborative work style.
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to interact effectively, and create and maintain harmonious relationships with a diverse population of staff, faculty, students, and off-campus constituents.
  • Independent initiative. Must have the ability to stay on task and work productively with a minimum amount of supervision or guidance. Willingness to take on a variety of tasks related to the successful operation and administration of the College. The ability to adapt and work effectively as the College grows. Ability to work effectively under pressure.
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail with the ability to complete assignments in a timely manner, balancing the demands of concurrent and potentially competing projects. Strong written and verbal communication skills. Ability to write concisely, express thoughts clearly, and develop ideas in a logical sequence. Ability to read, understand, apply, and explain rules, regulations, and policies/procedures related to duties.
  • Ability to understand and follow complex oral and written instructions and create effective and efficient work processes.
  • The ability to think through problems, organize and seek out information, identify key factors and underlying causes, and generate solutions or resolve discrepancies.
  • Ability to exercise sound judgment and maintain confidentiality.
  • Strong computer skills including at least intermediate expertise with:
    • Email
    • Calendar systems such as iCal, Outlook, or Google
    • Word processing software such as Microsoft Word or Google Docs
    • Spreadsheets such as Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets
    • Microsoft PowerPoint
    • Databases such as FileMaker or Microsoft Access. Ability to collect data from multiple sources and create new reports


Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • PHR certification.
  • SPHR-CP certification.
  • HR experience in higher education.


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Typical office environment.


Work Schedule

Monday - Friday, 40 hours/week.


Salary Information

Level 27

Exempt Salary Schedule 


Special Instructions to Applicants

To apply, please provide letter of application, resume, and contact information for three professional references. Please apply by the priority deadline of May 31,2019 in order to ensure consideration. The position will remain posted until filled.


UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.


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The University of Massachusetts is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action, Title IX employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, sex, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age over 40, protected veteran status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, marital status, or other protected class.