Lacking resources

April 28, 2011

While browsing the shortlists for the THE Leadership and Management Awards ("The teams setting the pace in race for leading honours", 14 April), it was heartening to see that the nominations for the Outstanding Human Resources Team didn't include certain universities that have, in my experience, failed to perform the most rudimentary tasks.

Over the past three years, I have been an unsuccessful interview candidate at five UK universities, yet only one gave me feedback as a matter of course. Indeed, three of the four didn't even reply to my polite emails requesting feedback and the fourth acknowledged but then ignored my request.

Giving prompt and meaningful feedback to students is an essential part of the academic job description, so I find it ironic that some university HR departments think it doesn't apply to interviews. What hope is there for improvement in higher education if applicants are not told how they might enhance their presentational or interview skills?

In the quest for better HR, may I humbly suggest that THE adds "HR service" to the league tables that often appear in its pages, with criteria determined by university staff?

Name and address withheld on request.

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