Human Resources

Hiring Process FAQs

Frequently asked questions and common myths regarding the hiring process are listed below for your reference. 

If you have any questions relating to the employment process that are not answered below, please contact us at

Printable Version: Hiring Process FAQs & Common Myths Debunked

Q: Can I contact someone I know and encourage them to apply for the open position?

A: Absolutely. We encourage all employees to reach out to contacts and refer qualified people to apply for open positions.

Q: Can I inform candidates of the salary prior to interviews?

A: Yes. This is an important step in the process especially if the salary is not flexible. This allows the candidate to make a determination on whether or not he/she wants to continue in the search. It also reduces the possibility that the selected candidate will decline the job offer based on salary. Notifying the candidates of the salary can occur at any stage in the process (e.g. before interview, during phone screen, etc.).

Q: What about if someone asks me the salary before they apply, can I tell them?

A: Yes, of course. We want to be transparent throughout the process especially if the salary has limited flexibility. If you’re going to discuss paygrades and/or ranges, please ensure the candidate understands that Tech does not offer over the mid-point of any paygrade.

Q: Can I share the candidate's application materials with people not on the search committee?

A: Application materials are considered confidential throughout the search. Application materials may be reviewed by those who have a reasonable business need to review the materials, but they cannot be disseminated. Before allowing anyone who is not on the search committee to review the materials, a secure location should be identified and appropriate confidential information redacted. Note: Executive positions are excluded from this process and may be released at an appropriate time during the search.

Q: A candidate has reached out to me regarding his/her application. Can I respond? And if so, what can I say?

A: Yes, you can and should respond to the candidate. It is appropriate to inform the candidate that the search is continuing (if he/she is still being considered) or to thank the candidate for his/her interest and inform him/her that other candidates who more closely fit our needs are being considered at this time. Keep in mind all communication is subject to open records. If you are hesitant to respond, contact Human Resources for guidance.

Q: Can the search committee conduct Skype/remote interviews to narrow down the candidate pool to bring to campus?

A: Yes. It is absolutely appropriate to conduct remote interviews. Tennessee Tech uses a product called Zoom to assist in video conferencing. More information can be found here.

Q: A candidate lives out of state and is it cost prohibitive to bring them to campus. Can we just hire them based on the video conference?

A: No. Candidates must come to campus for an interview during the course of the search. It ensures that Tennessee Tech is a good fit for the candidate and that candidate is a good fit for Tennessee Tech.

Q: Can you call references before you interview applicants?

A: No. It is inappropriate to contact references prior to the interview process. The search committee may elect to require reference letters as part of the application process; however, HR discourages this practice as can lead to adverse impact on protected categories.

Q: Can you call people for references if the candidate did not list them as a reference in his/her application?

 A: Only with the candidate’s approval, first.

Q: Can an offer of employment be made before PAF has been approved?

A: No. The PAF must be routed and approved by all parties. The Employment Manager will email the search committee chair or the department contact once an offer of employment can be made.

Q: When are the candidates notified of their application status from Human Resources?

A: Human Resources will notify all candidates that the position has been filled after a successful hire has been completed. Search committees should select the appropriate disposition in PeopleAdmin during the process. The system will automatically alert the candidate of their status. In addition, candidates who were interviewed (on or off campus) should be notified of their status via a personal touch from the search committee.

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