Appointments

Sharing Information Securely

As administrators we often have to share confidential information regarding faculty members. When we share this information electronically, we have to follow the requirements set out by UBC’s Chief Information Officer in the Information Security Standard on Transmission and Sharing of UBC Electronic Information. Improper sharing of confidential information at UBC frequently results in privacy breaches. It’s really important to follow the proper protocol to avoid a complaint to the Privacy Commissioner, or a legal claim, or both.

Confidential information includes personal information and financial information relating to payment card transactions. We are allowed to use unencrypted emails to share small amounts of low-risk confidential information. However, we cannot use unencrypted emails to send large amounts of confidential information, or any amount of high-risk information*, because this creates an unacceptable risk. For example, it would be acceptable to send an unencrypted email saying “Joe Smith is sick today and won’t be coming to work.” However, it would not be acceptable to use an unencrypted email to send an appointment form or a medical report, because these documents contain a large amount of confidential information.

You have two options to protect this information:

Option 1: Put the information in an encrypted attachment to your email. The CIO has issued instructions for encrypting these Word, Excel or PDF files. You should give the encryption password to the recipient in a secure manner; do not send it by email!

Option 2: Share the information using Workspace, which is a secure file sharing tool similar to Dropbox. In Faculty Relations we prefer that Dean’s Offices share any forms or documents via the Workspace directory that is set up for each faculty.

Thanks for keeping our confidential information secure! If you want more information about privacy and security, I encourage you to go to the Privacy Matters @ UBC webpage.

*High-risk information includes the following types of information:

  • Social Insurance Number (SIN)
  • Any official government identity card No. (e.g. Passport ID, Drivers’ License No., etc.)
  • Bank account information (e.g. direct deposit details)
  • Personal health information
  • Biometric data
  • Date of Birth

Workload Policy for Bargaining Unit Members

A reminder that as per the Collective Agreement (Part 1, Article 13) all units should have a transparent process for workload allocation which is shared annually with members of the unit.  It is recommended that this be documented in a workload policy. Workload practice will vary across units, but should be consistent within each unit.  Should Heads or administrators have questions regarding workload policy development or changes they should contact the Senior Manager in Faculty Relations responsible for their Faculty.

Paperwork for Additional Duties

A reminder that whenever a faculty member takes on extra duties for which they will be paid this must be confirmed with the faculty member in writing.  Either a letter from the Head or an email exchange confirming the offer and acceptance is acceptable.

Postdoctoral Fellow Appointments – Reminder of Degree Requirement

In order to hold a Postdoctoral Fellow appointment at UBC an individual must have their PhD, MD or DDS in hand before the start of the appointment. In the case of a PhD it must have been awarded no more than 5 years in advance of the appointment start date and for an MD or DDS the date of award may be up to 10 years in advance.

Often positions are offered to individuals prior to the completion of their PhD. While an offer can be made prior to completion the individual should have their PhD in hand by the time they arrive at UBC to take up their appointment.  In the rare circumstance where the PhD has not yet been awarded the individual must obtain a letter from the Dean of Graduate Studies at their university confirming that they have completed all the necessary requirements for their PhD.  Postdoctoral positions should not be offered to individuals who are still working on their PhD.

The Postdoctoral Fellows Offer Letters have been updated to reflect the PhD requirement.  Please ensure that you are using the up-to-date letters when making offers.

Immigration update – IRCC Portal Guide for Offers of Employment

The How to Complete an Offer of Employment Guide created by Faculty Relations has recently been updated.  Administrators should refer to the updated version of the guide before they complete their next Offer of Employment on the Immigration, Citizenship & Refugees Canada (IRCC) Employer Portal.

In particular we would like to draw your attention to the Academic Exchange exemption for Visiting Faculty.  This exemption is applicable to individuals who hold a faculty appointment at another academic institution and the title provided to them at UBC, and reflected in the IRCC Offer of Employment should match that of their home institution. In some cases, for example that of Senior Lecturer, there is not a one to one match, but in most cases there should be.  Note that the title Visiting Scientist is not recognized by IRCC and does not normally fall under the Visiting Faculty exemption.  If you are inviting a researcher/scientist who does not hold an academic appointment elsewhere please contact Faculty Relations to discuss.

Offer Letters

The offer letter templates for tenure stream faculty and Librarians have recently been updated, and administrators should ensure they are using the most recent version of these letters.

Keep in mind that offer letters are binding contracts of employment and as such the templates have been created to ensure that they are enforceable and meet legislative and university requirements. Should a unit wish to make substantial changes to an offer letter they must seek input from the Dean’s Office and subsequently Faculty Relations (UBC Vancouver) or Human Resources (UBC Okanagan).  Any unit which uses a letter that has been changed and not pre-approved will be the responsibility of the unit in terms of legal consequences that may flow from the contractual terms (including legal fees and potential damages).

Lecturer Appointments and Offer Letters

Please keep in mind that any Lecturers who have not been appointed under the new Collective Agreement language need to be appointed with the updated template Offer Letter and go through probation (even if they have held a Lecturer position at the University for a year or more).  Any Lecturer being renewed post-probation can be appointed with this Lecturer Renewal template.   Generally any Lecturer appointed before August 15th 2017 has not undergone probation and must do so.

Joint Appointments: Promotion and Tenure Considerations

For those faculty members who are jointly appointed in more than one academic unit, it is important that the tenure and promotion process is documented and agreed upon by the hiring units prior to the individual faculty member’s start date. The tenure and promotion process can be found on the Faculty Relations website, and please refer to the Joint Appointment Checklist which can be downloaded as a Microsoft Word document from the Faculty Relations Joint Appointment page.

Senior Appointments Committee Deadline

Please be advised that the deadline for the 2016/2017 Senior Appointments Committee (SAC) cases is April 19th, 2017. This date is firm and is set in order for SAC to be able to review the submitted cases before their final meeting on June 23rd, 2017. Any cases submitted beyond the deadline will not be reviewed until the start of the 2017/2018 academic year in September. Please share this information with your departments, so they can plan accordingly.

New SAC Guide for 2016/2017

The Senior Appointments Committee (SAC) Guide to Reappointment, Promotion, and Tenure at UBC has just been updated for the 2016/2017 year. The latest revisions and additions bring further clarity to the eligibility, application and review process for candidates in all tenure-track positions. The SAC Guide is updated each year based on input from all faculties at both the Vancouver and Okanagan campuses.

The Guide and a summary of this year’s updates are both available in PDF format online at: Tenure, Promotion & Reappointment for Faculty Members.