Recruiting Guidelines and Resources
Employers recruiting at Caltech are expected to follow the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) guidelines, the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) Principles of Professional Conduct for Employment Professionals, and Caltech's guidelines. The National Center for Women in Information Technology (NCWIT) is a model for addressing underrepresentation in technology professions. NCWIT offers resources and best practices for equitable engagement, recruitment, and retention.
CAEL requires all employers to comply with all applicable federal and state laws prohibiting discrimination in recruiting, hiring and the workplace. The federal government prohibits higher education institutions from discriminating on the basis of race, color, or national origin (Title VI, Civil Rights Act of 1964); gender (Title IX, Education Amendments of 1972); or disability, veteran status, or age (Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990). Caltech's non- discrimination policy is consistent with the law and includes additional protected categories:
CAEL is committed to maintaining the privacy of personal information provided by students, postdocs, alumni, and employers. Any materials (resume, cover letter, research, CV, transcripts) received from our students should be shared only with those persons at your company/organization involved in the recruiting and hiring process.
Any intentional violation of these guidelines may result in deferred recruitment or employer being denied access to recruiting for the following season.
All jobs and internships should be posted on Symplicity prior to being circulated to clubs and organizations. Jobs and internships must meet the following criteria for approval:
- Complete profile, including point of contact for organization
- W-2 Position (no 1099s)
- Position responsibilities and requirements must be clearly defined
- Salary range must be comparable to similar positions within an industry
- Position should be relevant to our degree options in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).
For tips on writing balanced job descriptions, including examples of STEM positions, please see the NCWIT link: https://ncwit.org/resource/jobdescriptionanalysis/
Checklists for reducing unconscious bias in job descriptions are also included on NCWIT's website: https://ncwit.org/resource/jobdescriptionchecklist/
California's Pay Transparency Law, codified under Labor Code 432.3, now requires employers to provide employees with pay scale information for their position, and further requires employers with 15 or more employees (only one of whom need be in California, and includes remote, hybrid, as well as in-person positions) to affirmatively include pay scale information in job postings. Links to pay scales on a separate document are insufficient. "Pay scale" is defined as the "salary or hourly wage range that the employer reasonably expects to pay for the position." Bonuses, tips, and other benefits are not included.
States and localities requiring employers to disclose salary ranges (as of May 2023):
- New York
- Rhode Island
- New York City, NY; Ithaca, NY; Westchester County, NY
- Jersey City, New Jersey
For more information, go to: https://www.shrm.org/resourcesandtools/hr-topics/talent-acquisition/pages/state-pay-equity-laws.aspx
Job Offer and Decision Timeline
We encourage employers to allow students to participate in OCR opportunities during recruiting season. In the spirit of being respectful of employers' timelines and hiring needs while providing students with sufficient time and a reasonable process for making decisions, employers should follow the offer decision timelines below.
Full-time Job Offers: Please provide students 3 weeks after a full-time job offer is extended or October 28th (whichever is later) to respond with a decision, including internship conversion offers.
Internship Offers: Please provide students 3 weeks after an internship offer is extended or October 28th (whichever is later) to respond with a decision on internship offers.
We expect all employers that recruit at Caltech to abide by our Job Offer and Decision Timeline. Allowing student candidates enough time to make an informed decision serves the interests of both candidates and employers. We strongly encourage employers to permit students to participate in recruitment activities and allow student candidates sufficient time to explore their career options before deciding whether or not to accept offers for internships or full-time employment. If a student decides to accept an employment offer for a full-time position or an internship within the specified timeframe (i.e., prior to the stated deadline), that is their prerogative. It is a violation of policy to impose undue pressure on students regarding acceptance of job offers, including pressure on the student to revoke their acceptance of a job offer from another employer.
CAEL defines an exploding offer as any offer that does not conform to the timeframes above. Employers should not make offers or pressure students to accept "early" offers including those requiring a quick response time, nor should they attach incentives involving diminishing bonuses, reduced options for location preferences, etc. Asking a student if he or she is ready to make a decision on the spot or providing the student with a hypothetical situation involving a potential offer is considered inappropriate.
It must be clearly communicated to the student at all times that he/she/they should feel comfortable speaking up about any scheduling conflicts. We recommend employers to provide alternative dates, without negative consequences, for a second-round interview if the date originally suggested by the employer conflicts with students' academic and/or other valid campus obligations.
Second Round Interviews:
CAEL does not permit students to cancel first-round interviews to attend second-round interviews. Moreover, employers should not ask or expect students to cancel a first round interview with a different company to take their second round interview. This is unfair to the student and causes problems for the companies. Ideally, second round interviews should be spaced a few days apart (minimum), as students have classes, exams and prior obligations that can't be changed. We ask that students not be immediately eliminated from the pool if they can't make their second round interviews due to a prior commitment, but that alternative options are provided.
When an employer extends a verbal offer of employment, a written offer of employment with the same terms and conditions must be issued within 7 days of the verbal offer. Employers cannot require acceptance of the verbal offer prior to issuing the written offer nor can the four week date of offer countdown begin until the written offer is extended.
All offer letters must include a start date. Candidates who interview with employers on campus expect to start work after graduation or by mid-September at the latest. Employers who anticipate start dates later than September 15, must disclose this information in the job description and must also inform CAEL. Internships must not start prior to the last day of finals. Refer to our academic calendar for dates (https://www.caltech.edu/academics/resources/academic-calendar).
Recruiting/Hiring Tracking and Data:
CAEL sends out an annual survey during the summer requesting data from the previous year. We ask you to please complete this survey by September 15 in order to track the success of our students who complete internships and those who accept full-time offers.
Basis of Compensation:
Employers who wish to participate in OCR or post jobs must offer bona fide positions that do not require new hires to pay a fee for training or other job-related expenses. Employers who compensate employees based solely on commission are ineligible to participate in on-campus interviews.
On Campus Events:
Events on campus can be targeted at specific groups within the Caltech Community but must be open to all students and postdocs.
Employers may provide refreshments. A list of caters is included here for your convenience. When choosing a caterer, please keep in mind that external caterers should pick up serving trays within 15 minutes of an event ending so that the room can be used for other purposes after the event.
Serving alcohol should not be part of the recruitment process. Our concern is for your liability and the safety and welfare of our students. Under-aged drinking is strictly forbidden.