Applications for AMS positions go digital

The move to online marks the execution of a plan first suggested about eight years ago

The AMS received 2,500 applications in the fall, Vice-President of Operations Tristan Lee said.
The AMS received 2,500 applications in the fall, Vice-President of Operations Tristan Lee said.

As of last Friday, applicants for AMS council, managerial and service staff will be able to submit their applications via a link on the AMS website.

Tristan Lee, AMS vice-president of operations, said the move to online applications will make the process more efficient for those who have to sort through hundreds of applications each hiring season.

“This past Fall we received 2,500 applications for all service staff and volunteer positions,” Lee, ArtSci ’12, said. “In the past that’s required an entire night of sorting for the HR Officer.”

Now, applications are automatically sorted in the online database. Online options will be given to those hiring staff for both grant interviews and reject potential employees during the hiring process.

The application was developed by AMS IT Development Manager Niv Yahel.

It didn’t cost the Society anything to create, other than the money paid to Yahel and Laura Skellet, HR Officer, through their salary.

Lee said the online application idea was something suggested about eight years ago by the HR officer at the time, but it was Skellet who finally decided to try implementing it this year. Conversations about the online applications began in April 2012 and Skellet and Lee began work during the first week of May.

Initially, the service was supposed to be usable by September 2012, but a number of security setbacks kept the site from launching.

The personal information that is collected by the online application meant that the system needed to be protected from hacking — this involved Yahel working in collaboration with Queen’s IT Services.

“Niv [Yahel] would send off pieces of the application to a guy in IT Services and they would try to hack the application as many times as possible to ensure that with the final product we could correct any issues and make sure that it was as secure as possible,” Lee said.

This isn’t the first portion of AMS paperwork to hit the Web.

Last year, the opt-out system for the AMS Health and Dental plan changed from paper to being outsourced. The entire opt-out system for fees is also online.

Lee estimated that this alone saved the Society thousands of sheets of paper.

Lee said said HR officers would always be able to design different application routes should applicants not have access to the Internet.

“It’s a huge initiative that lots of people have really wanted to implement,” he added. “[It’s something] that can only improve in the coming years and is a step toward the AMS becoming totally green.”


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