Ferris one of 24 Michigan colleges to launch jobs portal

BIG RAPIDS – Doctors and healthcare workers, editors and lawyers, chefs, computer programmers, police officers, postal clerks and professors are all among the wide array of jobs the Michigan Higher Education Recruitment Consortium has gathered in a new central online portal.

The new Web site, www.michiganherc.org, opens with more than 1,200 job postings at 24 Michigan colleges and universities, including Ferris State University. As Michigan has lost manufacturing jobs, the number of jobs connected to the education and healthcare sectors and the many supporting roles that accompany them has continued to grow.

“By working together, we can keep the best workers in the state and attract new talent to Michigan,” said Linda Berauer, director of Michigan HERC. “Regions known for their large pools of knowledge workers already have similar HERC organizations. Michigan HERC makes our state more competitive.”

Jobs include research, professional, executive, administrative and support positions in academia and their hospital and healthcare facilities, as well as tenure-track and instructional faculty, and positions in information technology and the trades. Users may set up and save multiple profiles with specific search criteria and register to receive e-mail alerts when new positions that fit their criteria are posted.

The central location of job postings with links to member campuses, regional resources, diversity Web sites and aids for dual career couples, as well as the Web site’s ability to accommodate dual-career searches, distinguishes Michigan HERC from other employment Web sites.

“The MI-HERC site is unique in that the focus is on the higher education sector in a specific geographic area with the member schools posting virtually all of their jobs because they can list all their jobs for free,'” Berauer said. “On many higher ed sites, universities have to pay high fees and advertise only a small number of openings. On commercial job sites, higher ed listings are often pretty random. If someone is focused on finding a place in the higher education sector in Michigan, the MI-HERC site will allow them to see what’s available in a good percentage of institutions with a single click.”

Michigan colleges and universities created HERC to share information and resources to attract and retain talent, help achieve a diverse workforce, and reduce costs through joint purchasing arrangements. In addition to the shared Web site, HERC organizes forums where staff from member institutions can network and interact, sharing successful methods and best practices for addressing recruitment and retention issues, including issues related to placing partners and keeping their staffs diverse.

Helping dual career couples is a big emphasis of HERC, Berauer added. With a growing number of two-income couples, human resource staffers often struggle when they pursue a talented worker whose spouse is in a field where they might not have an opening. Often they need to look to other potential employers within the region.

The site also includes links to resources for learning about Michigan’s regions, relocation aids such as finding housing and schools for children, and multicultural and lifestyle resources in the state.

The Michigan HERC institutions are: Alma College, Central Michigan University, College for Creative Studies, Concordia University, Cornerstone University, Davenport University, Delta College, Eastern Michigan University, Ferris State University, Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Valley State University, Henry Ford Community College, Michigan State University, Mott Community College, Oakland Community College, Oakland University, University of Detroit-Mercy, U-M-Ann Arbor, U-M-Dearborn, U-M-Flint, Washtenaw Community College, Wayne County Community College District, Wayne State University and Western Michigan University.

The consortium is designed to make it easier to recruit or retain talented faculty and staff by helping spouses find openings at nearby colleges or universities within the same region, to create networking opportunities and share best practices among member institutions through regular meetings, and to reduce costs through joint purchasing arrangements.

The first HERC began in northern California, the home of Silicon Valley, in 2000 and now includes 46 member institutions. There are now HERCs in other competitive areas where the hunt for talent is at a premium, including southern California, metro New York/southern Connecticut, New Jersey, upstate New York, New England and the Greater Chicago area. HERCs are also planned for metro St. Louis and the Upper Midwest. Development of a national HERC is underway that will function as a non-profit service provider to all the regional HERCs.

Visit the Michigan Higher Education Recruitment Consortium at www.michiganherc.org.


15 February, 2008