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REQUIREMENTS AND POLICIES MANUAL

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Appointments, Postdoctoral Fellow

    Title:

    Postdoctoral Fellow Appointments

    Publication date:

    12/23/2013

    Effective date:

    12/23/2013

    BRIEF

    Policy Summary

    Berkeley Lab employs persons in one of many different appointment types. Each appointment type has defined terms and conditions of employment. At the Laboratory, the postdoctoral experience is an opportunity for further scientific training and professional development for individuals who have recently completed a doctoral degree. Postdoctoral fellows bring expertise and creativity that enrich the research environment for all members of the Laboratory community, including graduate and undergraduate students of the University of California. This policy defines and sets forth terms and conditions relating to the appointment of postdoctoral fellows.

    Who Should Read This Policy

    • This policy applies to employees in the following employee classifications: Postdoctoral Fellow
    • This policy does not apply to employees in the following classifications: Career, Term, Faculty, Limited, Visiting Researcher, Rehired Retiree, Graduate Student Research Assistant, or Student Assistant.
    • This policy applies to non-represented employees. Represented employees should consult their collective bargaining agreement.

    To Read the Full Policy, Go To:

    The POLICY tab on this wiki page

    Contact Information

    For more information, employees may contact their division's Human Resources (HR) Center. Feedback on HR policies or procedures is welcomed. Send comments to hrpolicies@lbl.gov.

    Title:

    Postdoctoral Fellow Appointments

    Publication date:

    12/23/2013

    Effective date:

    12/23/2013

    POLICY

    A. Purpose

    This policy defines and sets forth terms and conditions relating to the appointment of postdoctoral fellows. It applies to postdoctoral fellows who are employees of the Laboratory. This policy does not apply to postdoctoral fellows who are affiliates of the Laboratory.

    B. Exceptions

    Requests that exceed what is allowed under current policy or that are not expressly addressed by current policy are considered exceptions to policy. Any request for an exception to policy requires, at minimum, approval by the Chief Human Resources and Diversity Officer (CHRO) and the Deputy Laboratory Director.

    C. Persons Affected

    • This policy applies to employees in the following employee classifications: Postdoctoral Fellow
    • This policy does not apply to employees in the following classifications: Career, Term, Faculty, Limited, Visiting Researcher, Rehired Retiree, Graduate Student Research Assistant, or Student Assistant.
    • This policy applies to non-represented employees. Represented employees should consult their collective bargaining agreement.

    D. Policy Statement

    1. Definition
      1. The postdoctoral fellow conducts research under the general oversight of a supervisor in preparation for a career position in academia, industry, government, or the nonprofit sector. Postdoctoral fellow appointments are intended to provide an opportunity to acquire further scientific professional growth and development.
      2. Postdoctoral fellows train under the direction and supervision of Laboratory scientific and engineering staff (including faculty). In addition to research activities, postdoctoral fellows may be approved to engage in other scientific activities (e.g., teaching, serving on institutional committees) to broaden their professional skills.

        LDRD Program

        For more information on Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program, go here.

      3. Postdoctoral fellows may serve as co-principal investigators on externally funded contracts or grants. They are also permitted to serve as principal investigators on Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) proposals. Postdoctoral fellows may be permitted to serve as principal investigators in three areas: (1) awards that are restricted to postdoctoral fellows; (2) small awards for research-related expenses; (3) or other circumstances approved by the division director.
    2. Titles
      1. The specific title of a postdoctoral fellow is determined by the source of funds:
        1. Employee Titles.The specific title of a postdoctoral fellow is determined by the source of funds.
          1. Postdoctoral Fellow. The Postdoctoral Fellow appointment is determined when (1) the research is supported by Laboratory funds, or (2) the Laboratory is reimbursed by an external agency for the postdoctoral fellow's appointment.
          2. Special Postdoctoral Fellow. The Special Postdoctoral Fellow appointment is for the individual who has funding support from an external agency. The division augments the fellowship funding with additional work and compensation to reach approved Laboratory pay rate minimums.
          3. Interim Postdoctoral Fellow. The Interim Postdoctoral Fellow appointment is for the time period between finishing doctoral degree requirements as a Laboratory Graduate Student Research Assistant (GSRA) and beginning postdoctoral work elsewhere. There should be no break-in-service between the end of the GSRA appointment and the beginning of the Interim Postdoctoral Fellow appointment. Such interim appointments are made by a division director, based on the recommendation of the supervisor, and are not to exceed six months.
        2. Affiliate Titles. The title of an affiliate postdoctoral fellow is determined by the source of funds. Postdoctoral fellows who have affiliate status at the Laboratory are not covered by this policy. 
          1. Affiliate Postdoctoral Fellow. The Affiliate Postdoctoral Fellow appointment is for the postdoctoral fellow with an appointment at another institution and is participating in a scientific collaboration or participating in experiments at a Laboratory user facility. See the Site Access Policy to determine whether these are visitors or participating affiliates.
          2. Affiliate Postdoctoral Fellow – Stipend. The Affiliate Postdoctoral Fellow – Stipend appointment is for a postdoctoral fellow who has been awarded or appointed to a fellowship or traineeship for postdoctoral study by an external agency. The fellowship or traineeship is paid through a Laboratory non-payroll account.
          3. Affiliate Postdoctoral Fellow – Paid Direct. The Affiliate Postdoctoral Fellow – Paid Direct appointment is for the postdoctoral fellow who has been awarded a fellowship or traineeship for postdoctoral study by an external agency. The agency pays the fellowship or traineeship directly to the postdoctoral fellow rather than through the Laboratory.
    3. Qualifications. The Postdoctoral Fellow position requires a recent Ph.D. or the equivalent. Candidates should show strong potential for creativity and productivity in research.
    4. Recruitment. Recruitment as defined in the Recruitment and Hiring policy is encouraged to promote equal opportunity for all candidates but is not required.
    5. Appointment Criteria. Appointment as a Postdoctoral Fellow requires a confirmed doctoral degree or the international equivalent.
    6. Terms of Service
    7. Postdoctoral Fellow appointments have fixed end dates. The duration of an initial appointment is typically one year but may be up to three years. The minimum duration of the appointment is six months at full time. 
    8. The total duration of an individual's postdoctoral service including postdoctoral service at other institutions may not exceed five years. The manager or supervisor determines appropriate tenure at the Laboratory by taking into account prior postdoctoral experience at other institutions.
    9. If a postdoctoral fellow is on an approved paid or unpaid leave of absence for one month or longer, his or her appointment may be extended by the length of the leave up to one additional year beyond the five-year maximum.
    10. Interim Postdoctoral Fellow appointments are not to exceed six months (See Section D.2.a.3, above).
    11. Time spent in Postdoctoral Fellow appointments is not counted toward the five-year maximum for Career-track and Project Scientist positions. See Scientist & Engineer Appointments policy.
    12. It is within the Laboratory's sole discretion not to re-appoint a postdoctoral fellow.
    13. Appointment Percentage
      1. Appointments to the Postdoctoral Fellow title are full time.
      2. When a postdoctoral fellow additionally holds another University of California position, the percent time of the Postdoctoral Fellow appointment normally will be reduced so that the sum of the percent times of the two appointments equals 100 percent.
    14. Salary and Stipend
      1. Scale. An authorized salary scale establishing minimum and maximum pay rates for Postdoctoral Fellow titles is used by the Human Resources Compensation Unit and approved by the Deputy Laboratory Director.
      2. Criteria. Divisions are responsible for setting pay rates.
    15. Coaching and Mentoring – Annual Reviews. In furtherance of advancing a postdoctoral fellow's career, it is recommended that the postdoctoral fellow and the supervisor conduct an annual oral review and have ongoing conversations on career growth and development throughout the postdoctoral experience. A written summary will be provided to the postdoctoral fellow upon request.
    16. Leaves
      1. Vacation. Employees in Postdoctoral Fellow positions accrue vacation leave in accordance with the Vacation Policy.
      2. Sick Leave. Employees in Postdoctoral Fellow positions accrue sick leave in accordance with the Sick Leave Policy.
      3. Medical Leave. Employees in Postdoctoral Fellow positions are eligible for unpaid medical leave as provided in the Family & Medical Leave Policy
      4. Military Leave. Employees in Postdoctoral Fellow appointments are eligible for military leave as provided in the Military Service Leave policy.
      5. Jury Leave. Employee postdoctoral fellows are eligible for paid jury duty leave as provided in the Jury Duty, Court Leave, & Witness Duty Leave policy.
    17. Holidays. Employees in Postdoctoral Fellow appointments are eligible for holiday pay as provided in the Holiday Policy.

    18. Benefits Plans. Employee postdoctoral fellows are eligible for designated health and welfare benefits.

    19. Expiration/Termination of Appointment
      1. A Postdoctoral Fellow appointment ends automatically at the end of three years from the initial appointment or on the current expiration/termination date unless notified in advance in writing that the appointment will be renewed.
      2. The employment of a postdoctoral fellow may be terminated before the end of the fellow's appointment for disciplinary reasons or substandard performance of which the fellow has been advised, as provided in the Corrective Action & Discipline policy. The appointment may also be terminated early for lack of funds, lack of work, or changes in operational/business needs, in which case the postdoctoral fellow will be given at least 90 days' advance written notice before termination.
    20. Promotions. The Postdoctoral Fellow position is not a Career-track position. There is no promotional track or expectation of advancement to any other professional research position. Waivers of recruitment of a postdoctoral fellow to another professional research position will be approved in exceptional cases and must be approved by the Chief Human Resources and Diversity Officer and Deputy Laboratory Director.

    E. Roles and Responsibilities 

    Role

    Responsibility

    Manager or supervisor

    • Is responsible for adhering to the provisions of this policy
    • Determines appropriate tenure at the Laboratory by taking into account prior postdoctoral experience at other institutions

    Employee

    Is responsible for adhering to the provisions of this policy

    Chief Human Resources and Diversity Officer (CHRO)

    Has the functional responsibility for this policy and process

    Human Resources Department

    Has the responsibility to advise management and employees on how to comply with this policy

     F. Definitions/Acronyms 

    Term

    Definition

    Affiliates

    Non-Laboratory employees engaged in on-site Laboratory activities. Affiliates are subject to training in safety and other subjects. They are also issued a Berkeley Lab identification badge. Affiliates may receive system accounts, research access to facilities, and a per diem allowance for housing and living expenses.  Examples:  Facility users, scientific collaborators, students 

    CHRO

    Chief Human Resources and Diversity Officer

    Principal Investigator (PI)

    The Laboratory manager or employee who has ultimate responsibility for meeting the terms of a project proposal, including the scope of work, the schedule, and the budget.

     G. Recordkeeping Requirements

    The Human Resources Department is responsible for maintaining all employee records.

    H. Implementing Documents

    Audience

    Document number

    Title

    Type

    Public

     

    Postdoctoral Supplemental Benefits (Garnett-Powers website)

    Website

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.010

    Postdoctoral Benefit Enrollment Special Instructions

    Procedure

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.011

    Postdoctoral Fellow Appointment Types

    Procedure

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.007

    Postdoctoral Fellow New Hire Fact Sheet

    Information

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.012

    Postdoctoral Fellow Information Sheet

    Information

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.009

    Request to Hire Postdoctoral Fellow Form

    Form

    HR Staff

    02.03.005.003

    Introduction to Postdoctoral Fellow Policy

    Training

    HR Staff

    02.03.005.008

    Postdoctoral Fellow Exception Memo Template

    Template

    I. Contact Information

    For more information, employees may contact their division's Human Resources (HR) Center. Feedback on HR policies or procedures is welcomed. Send comments to hrpolicies@lbl.gov.

    J. Revision History 

    Date

    Revision

    By whom

    Revision Description

    Section(s) affected

    Change Type

    1/2/2012

    0

    M. Bello

    Rewrite for wiki (brief)

    All

    Minor

    12/23/2013

    1

    M. Bello

    Reformat into Lab's new policy format.
    Clarified roles and responsibilities.

    All

    Minor

    DOCUMENT INFORMATION

    Title:

    Postdoctoral Fellow Appointments

    Document number

    02.03.005.000

    Revision number

    1

    Publication date:

    12/23/2013

    Effective date:

    12/23/2013

    Next review date:

    12/23/2016

    Policy Area:

    Types of Appointments

    RPM Section (home)

    Human Resources

    RPM Section (cross-reference)

    none

    Functional Division

    Human Resources

    Prior reference information (optional)

    RPM Chapter 2.28

    Source Requirements Documents

    • DOE Contract DE-AC02-05CH11231, Mod No. 857, Sec. J, App. A, Advance Understandings on Human Resources
    • University of California Academic Personnel Manual (APM) 390, Postdoctoral Scholars

    Implementing Documents

    Audience

    Document number

    Title

    Type

    Public

     

    Postdoctoral Supplemental Benefits (Garnett-Powers website)

    Website

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.010

    Postdoctoral Benefit Enrollment Special Instructions

    Procedure

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.011

    Postdoctoral Fellow Appointment Types

    Procedure

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.007

    Postdoctoral Fellow New Hire Fact Sheet

    Information

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.012

    Postdoctoral Fellow Information Sheet

    Information

    LBNL Staff

    02.03.005.009

    Request to Hire Postdoctoral Fellow Form

    Form

    HR Staff

    02.03.005.003

    Introduction to Postdoctoral Fellow Policy

    Training

    HR Staff

    02.03.005.008

    Postdoctoral Fellow Exception Memo Template

    Template

     

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