The Human Resources Strategy for Researchers (HRS4R)

On October 6, 2022, the Veterinary Research Institute was awarded by HR Excellence in Research award for its commitment to the continuous support and management of HR processes in accordance with the European requirements for the quality of human resource management in research according to the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers. We have succeeded in meeting the necessary requirements and conditions for certification. By obtaining the award, we have become one of the institutions entitled to use this certificate in recognition of the transparency, openness, and quality of HR standards in research. Above all, we see the award as a confirmation of the right direction and our commitment to further development, which we committed to in our Action Plan.

In the context of our work together and in pursuit of the award, a number of topics that had been neglected or marginalized have been opened up. On a number of topics, the situation has also forced us to revise a number of documents, changing our ways of looking at things. Discussions and feedback from all staff involved throughout the preparation process were beneficial. A number of adjustments, descriptions, and the creation of new rules, as well as a number of simplifications are ahead.

The goal of the current HR work that we offer to employees, regardless of the awards received, is our commitment to a better, safer, and more satisfying work environment for all of our employees with the following aspirations:

  • promoting an open and fair approach to working together,
  • to be a partner to employees in HR questions,
  • to be sensitive to and understand the needs of both managers and managed staff,
  • recommend appropriate forms and tools for HR work and offer solutions,
  • follow set and standardized and applicable procedures to all,
  • promote a friendly and relaxed atmosphere for work, development

The time and effort, to bring the process to a successful conclusion, were spent from our own resources, and winning the HR Award was not motivated by the potential gain of grant money. Achieving the goal was rewarding, as it is now quite clear that previously " non-mandatory and advisory strategies" are now an absolute requirement in the competitive research environment. The absence of partial but necessary HR-related instruments (e.g. Gender Equality Plans) is already here and will continue to have a significant impact on applicants for research projects, as they are defined as a prerequisite for the conclusion of a project contract via the funders. The award received and the anticipated preparation of further activities, significantly increases our chances, especially for projects submitted in grant programs, where the level of our HR policy will be taken into account in the evaluation within the bonus criteria. We are therefore prepared to demonstrate the necessary certification for applications for support of our research activities.

In March 2005 the European Commission adopted the Recommendation (2005/251 /EC) on ‘The European Charter for Researchers’ and ‘The Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers (C&C) specifying the set of principles for an improved research system. The implementation of the C&C in research institutions and funding organizations is supported by The Human resources strategy for researchers (HRS4R).

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Veterinary Research Institute (VRI) declared the commitment of the VRI to C&C on August 03, 2020, to implement those principles. The ‘HR Strategy for Researchers’ supports research institutions and funding organizations in the implementation of the Charter & Code in their policies and practices. The ‘HR Strategy for Researchers’ is a mechanism that supports the active implementation of the ‘Charter & Code’ by research institutions. The European Commission recognizes with the 'HR Excellence in Research Award' the institutions which make progress in aligning their human resources policies to the 40 principles of the Charter & Code, based on a customized action plan/HR strategy.  

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Case Number: 2020CZ548069

Current Task: Gap Analysis, OTMR & Action Plan: Redesign

C&C Endorsement: Commitment Letter

Endorsement Letter Submitted Date of Submission: Mon, 03/08/2020

 C&C Endorsement: Confirmation of Endorsement Letter

Accepted Date: Wed, 05/08/2020

 Gap Analysis, OTMR & Action Plan: Design

Submitted Date: Thu, 15/07/2021

Gap Analysis, OTMR & Action Plan: Administrative Eligibility

Accepted Date: Sat, 17/07/2021

Initial Assessment & Granting

Pending major revisions Date: Thu, 09/12/2021

Integrating the comments of the evaluation committee members - revision of the HR Award application Current task: Gap Analysis, OTMR and Action Plan: Update 12/2021 – 02/2022

Submit revised application for final review, Submission: Wed, 26/04/2022

RECEIVING HR Award: 06/10/2022

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Over the first two years, we will progressively meet the goals we set in our Action Plan. The whole process will be again controlled by the Steering Committee and of course, the Working Group and the Research Controlling Group, which again consists of representatives of all levels of research. After two years, we will review the Action Plan and after the next three years, independent experts to assess whether we meet the prerequisites for HR Excellence in Research will visit VRI. The award will either be defended or withdrawn.

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