The "Human Resources Strategy for Researchers" supports research institutions and funding organisations in the implementation of the principles of the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers (“Charter & Code”) in their policies and practices.

The concrete implementation of the Charter & Code by research institutions will render them more attractive to researchers looking for a new employer or for a host for their research project. Funding organisations implementing the Charter & Code principles will contribute to the attractiveness of their national research systems and to the attractiveness of the European Research Area more generally. The logo "Human Resources Excellence in Research" (“HR Excellence in Research”) will identify these institutions and organisations as providers and supporters of a stimulating and favourable working environment.

Since the adoption of the Commission Recommendation on the Charter & Code in 2005, over 1 200 institutions from 35 countries in Europe and abroad (and European/international organisations) have expressed their explicit support for the Charter & Code and 102 have obtained the Commission's "HR Excellence in Research" badge. In order to increase this number even more, general recommendations for research institutions in the process of obtaining the logo have been prepared within the Web-InUnion project:

  1. Use of previous experiences from institutions already awarded with the "HR Excellence in Research" logo is welcome. However, all human resources strategies should be individual and adapted to your organisational needs;
  2. An internal analysis by the participating research institution or funding organisation should involve all key players, managers and administrative staff. It is highly recommended to include early stage and experienced researchers, and to compare policies and practices against the Charter & Code principles;
  3. Internal analysis could be done by using a standard template, but again adapted as much as possible to your specific organisation. Since there are many different types of research organisations, not all bullets are applicable to every one of them. It is necessary to pay attention to all the principles of the Charter & Code which may be grouped according to your needs;
  4. It is important to highlight a connection between all business processes and the principles of the Charter & Code in the internal analysis which should include external factors as well (e.g. acts and regulations, internal regulations and statutes etc.) and how they influence the implementation of the Charter & Code principles. However, this is not the most important part of the internal analysis - it is more important to show how these principles are implemented in practice and in the daily work;
  5. Human resources strategy should be based on the internal analysis. The whole process is designed in such a way as to analyse the situation in and around the institution first, to recognise weaknesses and/or obstacles, to figure out how those weaknesses/obstacles can be removed or mitigated and finally to prepare a plan of concrete actions and steps which need to be taken. Therefore, the human resources strategy should be a direct result of the internal analysis in the form of an action plan, as a summary of the most important actions from the internal analysis;
  6. When preparing an human resources strategy, you should always keep in mind that the actions included should be as concrete as possible, in the form of actions which are planned to be undertaken for the purpose to achieve the set goals (i.e. do not put general goals such as „to increase communication“ or „to achieve equal gender balance“); 
  7. All actions should have clear timelines. If it is a concrete action (i.e. preparation of documents or rulebooks), it is desirable to set a date for completion (i.e. June 2012 or at least summer 2012). If it is a more complex action and rather difficult to set a date, then it is acceptable to indicate if the action is planned in the near of far future („short term-“, „medium term-“, „long term action“). For the regularly planned activities it is allowed to indicate „continuously“ or „regularly“;
  8. Internal analysis and human resources strategy should be prepared and published in English in the website of the organisation due to communication with European Commission. It is also recommended to publish it in the national language so as to be understandable to all the employees and others;
  9. The European Commission wants to know how the process went, who participated in the decision making, what exactly motivated you/the organisation. For that purpose it is enough to write a short summary with a description of the process and recognised weaknesses/obstacles and to publish it on your website or in the first page of the strategy;
  10. The strategy should be published on an easily accessible and apparent place – on the main page of the website or in a special section which is easily accessible from the main menu. The organisation should have a website in English. Internal analysis does not have to be published online, but it is desirable to send it to the European Commission in order for the EC to get an insight into the process;
  11. When the documents are finished and the strategy is published, you need to inform the European Commission and send links to your strategy and the internal analysis (if published online). The documents will be evaluated by a special committee and the European Commission will contact you with comments or information about receiving the logo „HR Excellence in research“.