School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences

Recruiting staff

Useful links and documents relating to the recruitment process

If you have any queries about the recruitment process, please contact the School Administrator.
Your HR contacts can be found here.
Step 1 - Refer to University and School policies
University recruitment and selection procedures and guidance can be found here:
Please refer to the School policy in relation to Equality and Diversity matters.

Recruitment of staff and graduate students Diversity Policy [PDF 171.53KB]

Recruitment of staff and graduate students: Diversity policy

General Principle:

To encourage applications and appointment of staff and students from under-represented groups through training and awareness of equality and diversity issues and compliance with good practice.


  • All staff will undergo a minimum of one equality and diversity training course per three years e.g. Unconscious Bias.
  • Participants of staff interview panels must have received training in Recruiting and Selecting Staff, via the Staff Development Unit
  • Interview panels, including for PhD studentships, will consist of a minimum of two staff.
  • Interview panels should normally be (and for faculty will always be) mixed gender. If a single-gender panel is unavoidable, it must be approved in advance by Head of Department (for studentships/PDRAs) or Head of School (for other staff).
  • Monitoring of training will be undertaken biannually by the Heads of School and Department.


Training courses can be booked via Sussex Direct (use sub-project TC001-03)

Step 2 - Completing 'approval to recruit' forms
Please use the following link and download the appropriate form. Complete the form and sign.
For research funded positions bring the completed form to the research support team in the school office who will gather signatures and send the RTF for approval
For school funded positions gather the required signatures, scan both sides and email to
Step 3 - Preparing the job description and advert
It is the responsibility of the following colleagues to prepare the job description, advert and liaise with HR over next steps:
  • Administrative posts - School Administrator / Deputy School Administrator
  • Faculty posts - Faculty in consultation with Head of Schools Coordinator
  • Technical posts - Technical Services Manager
  • Research funded posts - PI or project lead as appropriate
You will receive an email from Human Resources, either directly or forwarded from the research support team. Please ensure you follow the process outlined by HR.
To support you in this the Further Particulars for MPS document provides generic wording for some sections of the advert text. If you wish to make any changes to this document, please ensure it is emailed to the Research & Enterprise Coordinator at so that an up-to-date version is maintained on this page.


Generic job descriptions can be found on the University web pages.
Step 4 - Shortlisting and interviews
  • Administrative posts - shortlisting and interview schedules to be arranged by School Administrator / Deputy School Administrator.
    Faculty posts - shortlisting meetings and interview schedules will be arranged by the Head of School's Coordinator.
  • Technical posts - shortlisting and interview schedules to be arranged by Technical Manager.Technical posts - shortlisting and interview schedules to be arranged by Technical Manager.
  • Research funded posts - shortlisting and interview schedules to be arranged by the Principal Investigator.
Please note arranging interviews and support on the day is also the responsibilty of the above. Please refer to the MPS meeting and greeting policy for further information if required.


Step 5 - Appointing staff
Use the appropriate appointment form to notify Human Resources of the decision to appoint
Please email the School Administrator with details of the new appointment
Step 6 - Planning induction
Visit the MPS induction web page to plan an appropriate induction package.
If you are appointing a postdoctoral research fellow, please review the information for Line Managers or Research staff
Employing Casual Staff

If you need to employ someone on a short term basis then you can do so using casual employment. Casual employment should only be used in particular circumstances and not instead of advertising and recruiting for a fixed term role :

  • The work will be irregular or ad hoc with no clear fixed hours so it would not be possible to appoint to a formal contract. E.g. students working at open days
  • The work is for a very short period of time, less than 12 weeks.

Under these circumstances there is no need to advertise the position and you are free to appoint an appropriate person of your choice. Please check with the School Administrator if you are unsure or have exceptional circumstances.

However, all employees must complete a right to work check before they start. 

Nationals from countries that have free movement and employment rights in the UK

  • Send Employee to the School Office along with their passport to complete right to work checks before they commence employment. 
  • If the person says they have done this before please check with the School Office that they have an up to date record.

Nationals from countries with a limited right to work in the UK

  • If the employee has a limited right to work in the UK (e.g. Tier 4) then the School is required to notify Human Resources before the employee starts work.
  • Please note there is a different pay form forTier 4 casual staff. Here: Claim Form for Casual Employment: Tier 4 Students [PDF 56.04KB]
  • The first page of the form needs to be completed and given to the Deputy School Administrator before work commences. The pay section is completed after the work has taken place and handled as any other pay form.

Volunteering / Unpaid work

Each role needs to be assessed as per the activity undertaken to ensure certain criteria is met as the difference between volunteering and unpaid work can be grey sometimes. An activity classed as volunteering generally should meet the following criteria;

  • there should be no payment, other than reasonable travel and meals expenditure actually incurred (not an allowance for the same)
  • there should be no contractual obligations on the volunteer and they should not enjoy any contractual entitlement to any work or benefits in kind
  • volunteering is not a substitute for employment that is fulfilling a role that a salaried/paid worker would normally fulfil

If all the above is met then a Right to Work check is not necessary as this is not work. Volunteering must not amount to unpaid work, or job substitution. Unpaid work would still require a Right to Work.

When the Casual Employee is working for you

They must complete the online claim form (this is a new form, please do not use earlier forms). You will need to sign this as their supervisor, and the budget holder must also sign if different.  Electronic signatures are accepted.

The completed form must be emailed to by the final signatory of the form (see instructions on page 1 of the form).  Paper claim forms sent by post or internal mail will no longer be accepted.

The cut-off date for casual payroll claims is the final day of the preceding month (and therefore differs from the normal HR and Payroll cut off dates) for payment on the last working day of the month.

Holiday pay at 12.1% will be paid automatically to any claims submitted and should not be claimed separately or in addition.


Rate of pay

Agree with the employee what you are going to pay them. For reference, check the University's standard rates of pay. If you are not sure which grade would be appropriate then contact the School Administrator for advice.

Further advice 

For further advice and guidance, please contact the School Administrator or Deputy School Administrator.