Professorial Personnel recruitment and development at FHWS
At a glance:
Creation of structurally effective measures for the recruitment and development of professorial staff focussing on:
- Development and testing of innovative recruiting and qualification measures
- Increasing the quota of applicants for professorships (and improving the proportion of female professors in particular)
- Acquisition of young scientists for professorships
- Improving the visibility of FHWS as employer
- Enabling the compatibility of work and family life
Thanks to the Hightech Agenda 1,000 new professorships are being created in Bavaria by the end of 2023. Until 2026, FHWS has to acquire a minimum of 85 professors, and thus finds itself in a competitive situation with other institutions of higher education, universities, and research institutions, as well as the private sector.
An especially difficult situation arises through the required double-qualification for professors at universities of applied sciences (UAS): Applicants need a strong research background, usually proven by a doctorate, and professional experience of at least 5 years. In addition, there is a lack in public awareness for the job profile of a professor at a university of applied sciences compared to professorships at universities. Due to these circumstances, there is often an insufficient amount of suitable candidates for appointment processes at universities of applied sciences.
Thus, to support UAS, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) has started a programme by the Federal & Länder governments called “FH-Personal”. FHWS presented a convincing concept and therefore is among the 64 higher education institutions within Germany to receive funding.
An innovative 5-column model:
In its concept, FHWS employs innovative ideas, tailored especially to its requirements. The resulting measures represent structural improvements that are divided into five sub-areas.
New ways of recruiting and qualification:
The university offers a tenure track model to employ young candidates on a temporary basis at first. The candidates may undergo the actual appointment process once they have achieved all required qualifications. Seasoned professionals lacking experience in teaching or lacking the scientific qualification (doctorate) gain the opportunity to acquire the necessary qualification via a cooperative doctorate through the “Tandem” programme at FHWS. The legal foundation for this will be provided by the Bavarian University Innovation Act projected for 2022.
Existing staff will be offered opportunities for further professional development through focus professorships. Thus, professors will be enabled to focus on research, founding a company, or new forms of digital teaching over a limited period of time. Also on offer is a part-time position with reduced teaching load to reconcile the start of a new career with family obligations.
Promotion of young scientists:
For advancing the internal promotion young scientists at FHWS, measures to promote doctoral studies are being planned. In addition, the university’s assistant lecturers are to be integrated in a better way. To include the FHWS family as a whole and strengthen the bond, alumni marketing will be initiated for the first time across our entire institution. Ultimately, it is our graduates who represent a further potential source for new professors and who furthermore act as brand ambassadors for our institution.
Improving employer visibility:
In order to be competitive in the acquisition of candidates, the existing and active recruiting processes at FHWS will continue. This includes new concepts for applicant management in addition to improvements of the appointment process. Innovative marketing strategies serve as accompanying measures to further strengthen the image of FHWS in the public eye.
ProPere makes additional resources available for supporting professors during their every-day work lives at a university. For enabling internal networking and cooperation, an “Enterprise Social Network” (ESN) will be introduced. A new concept for on-boarding, measures for increasing employee satisfaction and for personnel development with offers especially designed for the target group are also planned for this sub-area.
Compatibility of work and family life:
For easier reconciliation of work and family life, the establishment of a family service is planned. The family service will be developing new concepts for counselling and support, including a concept for childcare services, ideally in proximity to FHWS premises. In addition, the participation in regional networks is on the agenda as well as an audit to become a certified family-friendly institution of higher education.
Vice President Prof. Dr. Gabriele Saueressig