Skip to main content

Appointment Process Overview 

Next year, Northwestern will implement an online, centralized hiring process for all new postdoctoral fellows. Until this time, the existing process will continue to be used for all postdoc appointments. Information on the existing process can be found below.

Current appointment process  

The following procedures are used for initial postdoctoral appointments and renewals, with the exception that a CV is not required for reappointment in a position at the same level. Prior to appointment expiration, faculty sponsors should consider and initiate recommendations for renewals. 

  1. A faculty member recommends an individual for a postdoctoral appointment by completing the postdoctoral fellow appointment form with the help of a designated department administrator. 
  2. The form requires the Degree Award Date field to be completed. All requirements for a doctoral degree must be completed prior to the start of a postdoctoral appointment at Northwestern University.  
  3. The form requires three signatures— the PI's, Department Chair/Center Director's and the Dean's.  A designated faculty member must sign the form before it can be submitted to the dean’s office. 
  4. Depending on individual school or center procedures, the Dean, the Center Director or the Department, initiates an Appointment and Position Data form to be sent to the Payroll Office at the Office of Human Resources (HR). HR forms may be found at the HR website.   
  5. A copy of the completed postdoctoral appointment form must be sent to the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs in PDF form along with the postdoc’s CV. 
  6. The candidate may be notified of the appointment once the Dean's office has approved the form.  In the case of international fellows, notification of appointment can be made after processing through the  International Office. 
  7. The appointee is required to sign a copy of the  appointment letter to signify agreement with the terms and conditions of the offer. This signed form must be placed in the appointee’s employee file.  

Other information recommended for inclusion as needed: 

In general, policies outlined by Northwestern University, the Office of Human Resources, the Office for Research, The Graduate School and the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs are to be followed. For specific questions on postdoctoral fellow appointment and training policies at Northwestern, please email the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs.