OF ADMINISTRATIVE AND FINANCIAL SERVICES
OF HUMAN RESOURCES
September 13, 2006
HUMAN RESOURCE MEMORANDUM 7-06
TO: Service Center
Directors, Deputy Directors, Human Resource Directors
SUBJECT: IMPLEMENTATION OF HUMAN
RESOURCE COMPONENTS OF SECURITY PROTOCOLS
Human Resource Memorandum
7-06 is intended to implement the human resource components of agency
information security policies. The procedures provided herein are intended to ensure
public confidence and security, and to ensure that the State Government
workforce is appropriately qualified and credentialed. The protocols
outlined herein must be applied for all new hires to State service.
These measures are an integral
component of an information security initiative developed by the Office
of the Chief Information Officer. It is anticipated that agencies will
develop specific information security protocols that are consistent with
the State of Maine Information Technology Security Policy.1 This
human resource memorandum will fulfill the human resource aspects of
agency information security policies.
This memorandum was developed
by a team of human resource professionals from the Bureau of Human Resources
and several agencies. This team, and their successors, will periodically
convene to ensure that human resource related security issues remain a
viable component of the State’s overall information security effort.
of the human resource related security protocols outlined in this memorandum
will begin January 1, 2007.
SECTION 1.1 SECURITY
IN JOB DEFINITION AND RESOURCING
1.1.1 SECURITY IN JOB
specifications will include:
general statement concerning employee security responsibilities.
classifications will include a statement concerning security responsibilities.
1.1.1.b Job postings will include
a statement that information provided during the application, interview,
and selection processes will be verified.
1.1.1.c The State of Maine employment
application(s) developed by the Bureau of Human Resources will include
the following affirmations:
application is true, correct, and complete to the best of the applicant’s
applicant may have to submit information not specifically requested
on the application form.
or the employing agency may verify any information provided in the
or the employing agency may conduct reference checks.
or the employing agency may conduct a credit check when appropriate.
or the employing agency may release information to authorized agents,
officers, and/or employees of the State of Maine which may include,
but are not limited to, information concerning past work, present
work, attendance, evaluations, educational records (including transcripts),
military service, criminal records, and any other personal record
deemed necessary to verify the information provided in the application
or during the selection process.
erroneous information or omitting pertinent information as part of the
application process would be sufficient cause for discharge.
1.1.2 PERSONNEL SCREENING
Verification of information
pertaining to applicants and new employees is a responsibility that is
shared by BHR and appointing authorities. BHR is responsible to ensure
that applications are complete, with the appropriate verifications left
to agency interview/selection panels and the agency HR Service Center
or other appropriate agency HR representative.
All new hires are conditional until
all prescribed verifications for the particular position are completed. All
verifications must be completed prior to the end of the probationary
1.1.2.a Employment Application
competitive positions completeness verified by BHR.
- For direct hire positions completeness
verified by agency human resource representative.
- Incomplete application(s) will
be returned to the applicant.
1.1.2.b Employment References
references must be obtained before a job offer is made or, if necessary,
before the candidate starts work. (Again, an offer of employment is conditional. If
employment references are not available, one of the conditions should
be appropriate personal references.)
are gathered by interview/selection panel chair (or panel member) or
other appropriate agency staff designated by the interview/selection
least one work-related reference should be obtained, preferably from
the last previous and/or the most job-related employer. Additional work-related
references are encouraged. In addition to ascertaining that the person
was employed with the organization in question, and to the extent a
former employer is willing to provide additional information, reference
checks should include:
position held, whether full-time or part-time, dates of employment
and eligibility for rehire.
directly associated with the Core Competencies, Knowledge and Skills,
Terms and Conditions and, for applicable supervisory positions, the
manager-related questions found in the State of Maine Performance
Management Form (PER 119 3/97 or its successor).
a work-related reference is not available, a personal reference may be
verified by interview/selection panel chair (or panel member) for completeness.
attention should be given to account for significant gaps in employment
1.1.2.d Academic Qualifications
is the candidate’s responsibility to produce original academic documentation
(or copies certified with a raised seal from the institution) to the
of educational credentials are acceptable only on a temporary basis.
original academic credentials/documents are not immediately available,
it is the employee’s responsibility to obtain certified copies from
the educational institution prior to the end of the probationary period.
credentials/documents must be provided to the agency at the candidate’s
expense. These documents are generally available through the Registrar
at a college or university.
the event there is any question concerning the authenticity of academic
transcripts or other credentials, the agency must verify graduation,
the degree conferred, and major/minor fields of study directly
with academic institution.
that educational institution is accredited by a nationally recognized
accrediting agency that the United States Secretary of Education
(ED.gov) has determined to be a reliable authority as to the quality
of education or training provided by the institution of higher education
and the higher education programs they accredit. [List published
by the U.S. Secretary of Education may currently be found at http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/search.asp] A
degree from an institution that is not accredited by a nationally recognized
accrediting agency that the United States Secretary of Education has
determined to be a reliable authority as to the quality of education
or training may not be treated as a valid degree for purposes of
qualification for the classification or for other purposes.
the event that an academic credential is from a foreign institution,
the applicant is required, at his or her own expense, to submit the
credentials to the World Education Services for a credential evaluation. WES will
then supply the State with a report verifying that the credentials are
authentic and indicating the U.S. equivalency of the foreign credential. Reference: http://www.wes.org/
- An applicant who presents foreign credentials may utilize
another similar service if authorized, in advance, by the Director, Bureau
of Human Resources.
professional licensing boards (physicians, nurses, attorneys, social
workers, etc.) undertake an extensive credential evaluation prior
to issuing a license to practice in Maine. In those cases, possession
of the appropriate Maine license to practice may be considered prima-facie evidence
that the foreign academic credential is valid and no further independent
verification of the academic credential is required.
copy of a degree (and WES verification if from a foreign institution)
should be retained in the personnel file only after the interview/selection
panel chair (or member) and/or appropriate agency HR representative
has viewed the original document. The person verifying authenticity
of the copy and accreditation must indicate original was viewed and
accreditation verified, then sign and date copy for employee personnel
is the candidate’s responsibility to produce original licenses and
certifications from the issuing authority.
licenses and certifications must be obtained and maintained at the candidate’s
possession of license/certification required by the classification
or which has been used to establish qualification for the classification
to be employed.
copy of a license should be retained in the personnel file only after
interview/selection panel chair (or member) and/or appropriate agency
HR representative has viewed the original document. The person
verifying authenticity of copy must indicate original viewed, sign
and date copy for employee personnel file.
authenticity of license/certification directly with the granting authority,
such as a licensing board.
agency may choose to ascertain if a candidate has had any adverse licensing
board actions with respect to a professional license. In that event, the
agency may consult the website maintained by the Department of Professional
and Financial Regulation, which provides much of this information. If
the candidate is an attorney, the information may be accessed through
the Board of Overseers of the Bar.
1.1.2.f Background Checks
criminal background check shall be conducted for all new employees.
criminal record may legitimately be considered pursuant to Human Resources
Memorandum 2-06 (March 15, 2006), or its successor.
agencies should consult the Department of Public Safety for access
to the website that will provide conviction and adjudication information
for adult and juvenile crimes committed within the State of Maine.
the event that a prospective employee self identifies a criminal conviction,
or a criminal conviction is subsequently determined by way of the criminal
records check, agencies should refer to Human Resources Memorandum
the employee will be required to spend a significant amount of time
driving a State-owned or privately-owned vehicle conducting State
business, and/or in cases when a State employee is customarily required
to transport clients, patients, inmates, or civilians, a driving record
check may be conducted.
the operation of a motor vehicle is a regular component of employment,
a candidate’s driving record may legitimately be considered as
a factor in the selection process.
the event that a prospective employee self identifies an adverse driving
record, or an adverse driving record is subsequently determined by way
of the driving record check, agencies should consider the driving record
in a manner similar to that provided in HR Memorandum 2-06 (03/15/06). That
is, there must be a nexus between the driving record and the job.
using a vehicle owned by the State of Maine are required to adhere
to the VEHICLE
USE AGREEMENT provided by Risk Management.
credit check may be conducted in cases where a legitimate nexus exists
between an employee’s credit history and his or her job functions.
checks should only be instituted for positions where there is a clear
and direct correlation between credit history and job duties.
are cautioned that the collection and proper use of credit information
is subject to a myriad of state and federal laws. If an agency contemplates
instituting credit checks, the agency should receive specific direction
from the Department of the Attorney General.
of identity and eligibility for employment will be verified by an agency
human resource representative [Form I-9] when completing new-hire paperwork.
to Applicant Prior to Employment Interview
panel chair or member or an agency HR representative should advise each
applicant, in writing, what will be required at the time of the initial
employment interview. These items include, but are not limited to
current resume/vitae, or other information that the agency deems appropriate
for the employment interview.
model pre-interview letter is attached for reference.
may require that the interview be scheduled by phone. In that case
all of the information outlined in the sample letter should be communicated
verbally during the phone contact.
1.1.2.i Written Job
offer of employment must be in writing. (This does not preclude initial
notification by other means, such as email or phone, followed by a
written job offer.)
offer of employment must include a statement that the job offer is conditional
based upon verification of information provided to the State, a criminal
background check and, if required for the position, a driver’s license,
and/or credit check.
offer of employment must advise the candidate what “New Hire” information
will be required including, but not limited to, identification materials
for the Form I-9, original academic degrees, licenses, certifications,
or other work-related credentials.
sample written job offer is attached as a reference.2
verification checklist must be completed for all new employees prior
to the end of probation.
agency HR representative will ensure that the verification checklist
has been completed prior to authorizing permanent status.
failure of an employee to provide the documentation necessary to verify
his/her credentials during initial probation is deemed to be unsatisfactory
performance and the employee may not attain permanent status. The employee
will be so advised pursuant to the Civil Service Rules or appropriate bargaining
agreement. Depending on the individual circumstances, the employee’s
service may be terminated or, if the appropriate documentation has
been requested in a timely manner, but is pending, probation may be
extended for up to an additional six months.
the event the agency has received the necessary documentation, but is
unable to complete the necessary verifications within the initial
probationary period, the employee’s probation will be extended
for up to an additional six months.
to complete verification prior by the end of an extended probation
(up to one year) is deemed to be unsatisfactory performance by the
employee and the employee may not attain permanent status.
are intended to ensure that information designated confidential is not
improperly released to unauthorized persons. Confidentiality agreements
inform an employee of his or her responsibilities with respect to the
confidentiality of information and the potential consequences of the
improper release of records.
Although maintaining the
confidentiality of information remains an important responsibility of
each State employee, the guiding principles with respect to public
access to public records articulated in Title 1, Chapter 13, should
always be considered in the conduct of State business.
1.1.3.a In the event that an employee
is unsure as to whether information should be released, supervisory and
or legal guidance should be obtained prior to the release of the
1.1.3.b Prior to starting work, every
employee of the State of Maine, regardless of employee status, is required
to read, agree to, and sign a confidentiality agreement.
the event an agency does not have a confidentiality agreement, the
sample provided by the Bureau of Human Resources may be utilized.
agreement will be included in the employee’s personnel file.
1.1.3.c Individual agencies may have
additional confidentiality agreements that are specific to the work location
or other appropriate mission.
1.1.3.d In the event that an employee
changes work location, whether on a temporary or permanent basis, an HR
representative must ensure that an appropriate agency confidentiality agreement
is agreed to and signed by the employee.
1.1.4 TERMS AND CONDITIONS
1.1.4.a Individual employees are responsible
for information security within the purview of their employment.
SECTION 1.2 USER
1.2.1 INFORMATION SECURITY
EDUCATION AND TRAINING
Information security responsibilities
and protocols will be incorporated into new employee and management training.
1.2.1.a Information security will
be included in mandatory New Employee Orientation, whether it is a
statewide or agency-specific NEO program.
1.2.1.b Information security will
be included in mandatory Managing in State Government (MSG) training, whether
it is a statewide or agency-specific program.
security segment will be incorporated in the MSG handbook.
1.2.1.c Information security overview
included in on-line BHR Policy and Procedures Manual
Alicia Kellogg, Director
Bureau of Human Resources
1 The State of Maine Information Technology
Security Policy “.
. . provides a uniform set of information technology security policies,
standards and general guidelines for every State Department, Agency, Board,
Bureau, Commission, and Authority which are required to comply with Maine
Revised Statute Annotated (MSRA) Title 5, Chapter 158, § 1871 - 1896.
All Maine State Government entities, unless specifically exempted, are
required to abide by the policies hereby established. All users (employees,
contractors, vendors, and other parties) are expected to understand and
abide by them.”
*The term “personnel file” is not specifically defined in
Civil Service Law or Civil Service Rules. The Civil Service Law, 5 MRSA, §7070
and §7071 defines what records the Director, BHR is required to maintain. These
requirements are further defined in CSR, Chapter 14.
2 It is strongly recommended that the job offer
include the starting salary stated in terms of both the salary schedules
(Grade/Step/Salary Specification) and the actual hourly and/or annual
dollar amount. This
will avoid any confusion as to salary considerations for a new employee. It
should be emphasized that hiring supervisors do not have the authority
to promise a salary above Step 1 of the salary grade. The only exception
would be if the authority to hire above the minimum rate is pre-approved.
Attachment 1 - PER-131(9/06) - Verification Certification (Word
version) (Adobe PDF version)
Attachment 2 - Model Pre-interview letter
Attachment 3 - Model Reference Check
Attachment 4 - Sample written job offer
Attachment 5 - Sample Confidential Agreement
Attachment 6 - Policy Guideline Concerning Applicants With Criminal Convictions
Attachment 7 - Implementation of HR Security Protocols Q & A