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New system cuts hiring time.

WHEN IT COMES TO HIRING new faculty and staff, the process can be time-consuming and expensive--especially if the perfect candidate gets hired elsewhere while you're still going through the paperwork. At Drexel University's College of Medicine (Pa.), the typical faculty recruitment process includes rigorous background checks for credentials, education and training, practice history, board certifications, licensure, hospital affiliations, and insurance claims. It's a process that involves multiple departments across the campus, such as human resources, faculty affairs, legal counsel, and risk management. With 40 to 50 new hires each fiscal year, the potential for hiring gridlock is great.

But now, the College of Medicine thinks it has a way to dramatically reduce the time involved. Partnering with Alliance Consulting, the school developed a new tracking system that ultimately transforms this paper-intense, manual process into a secured, paperless, electronic workflow. The system was built around a beta version of Microsoft's Windows Workflow Foundation, which combines a workflow engine, programming model, and developers' tools and is slated for public release this year.

"Since the system was implemented, we have experienced a considerable reduction in the time required to complete the examination of key medical personnel, giving us a significant competitive advantage within the marketplace," says Richard Homan, dean of the College of Medicine.

The system has been operational since last September and improvement has already been noted. "Before the implementation of the system, the hiring process took six months or greater as an average," says Rachel Sparrow, Media and Public Relations manager. "With the new system, the target time frame is 60 days, depending on how quickly we get the necessary information from the candidate. We are still evaluating an average timeframe."

The College of Medicine will be sharing its experience in using this system with the broader Drexel community to see whether other academic units might benefit, Sparrow says.
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Title Annotation:BEHIND the NEWS
Author:Goral, Tim
Publication:University Business
Date:Feb 1, 2007
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