Appointment of relatives or others with close personal or external business relationships; procedures to assure equal opportunity and to avoid the possibility of favoritism (nepotism)
Applies to: all regular and temporary faculty and staff members
Issued by (Dept): UHR Strategy, Planning and Policy
SPG number: 201.23
Procedure A: Relatives
Applicant for Appointment:
Complete the appropriate application form online or on paper, including the section that requires a list of all relatives employed by the University and the units in which they are employed.
Before processing an appointment, review the application materials of the selected candidate to determine whether the issue of nepotism needs to be addressed; that is, whether the individual, if appointed, would ordinarily be under the supervision of a relative, or have relatives working for the same immediate supervisor.
- In the case of employees who become relatives of other University employees after their appointment, review the situation to determine whether the issue of nepotism needs to be addressed.
- In any case, when the issue of nepotism needs to be addressed, the appointing supervisor should prepare for the administrative head of the organizational unit (e.g. Dean or Director) a management plan.
- In the case of new hires or promotions, the management plan should document that the decision to appoint is based on appropriate University standards.
- In those cases in which the appointee would ordinarily be supervised by a relative, the management plan must address reporting relationships, supervision and evaluation that will assure that there will be no decision making based upon relationships in promotion, wages, hours or other conditions of employment. The plan should address the management of the approval and review process for expenditures and travel to preclude any potential appearance of nepotism, conflict of interest or conflict of commitment. To ensure continuity and appropriateness, a unit review of the approved management plan should take place in the event of any change in reporting relationships, and on an annual basis at a minimum. A sample management plan is attached.
The plan should provide for review by the head of the organizational unit (e.g. Dean or Director) and the unit's senior Human Resources officer or senior Administrator with responsibility for Human Resources.
- In those cases where related employees will be working for the same immediate supervisor, include in the management plan steps to be taken to alleviate any pressures toward favoritism that could occur as a result of supervising related individuals.
Administrative Head of the Organizational Unit (e.g. Dean or Director):
Review the management plan provided by the department.
- Indicate approval in writing, and forward the management plan to the unit's senior Human Resources officer.
- If the arrangements described are not acceptable, return the management plan to the department indicating what needs to be changed, or why the request will not be approved.
Unit Human Resources Officer or senior Administrator with Human Resources Responsibility:
Review the management plan and the written approval provided by the Dean or Director. Indicate concurrence or nonconcurrence in writing.
- In the case of concurrence, place copies of the approved management plan in the employee's personnel file and in the appointment file. For temporary employees, attach a copy of the approved management plan to the temporary appointment paperwork. Forward a copy of the management plan to your unit's HR consultant.
- In the case of nonconcurrence, return the management plan to the administrative head of the unit with an explanation.
Procedure B: Other close personal relationships and external business relationships
If concerns about favoritism arising from close personal or external business relationships come to the attention of a supervisor, the supervisor is responsible for investigating the concerns and consulting with the unit's Human Resources officer regarding what action should be taken.