Recruitment: a new challenge

Part of my role as Project Officer is to manage the employment of ten PhD students/early career researchers – 1 day a week for 6 weeks. The period of employment is over a 12 week (3 month) period and will last until the end of the project.

As the positions for the students are so short-term and flexible, there was little need for a full formal job description, and so I created a brief outline of responsibilities, based on that we often use to advertise other short term positions, especially the student positions on the IT & Library Support Desk.

ORCID Job details

In addition to the requirement for the PhD students and early career researchers to be advocates for ORCID within the schools, we are going to be asking them to contribute their knowledge of their subjects, peers and mentors to the development and management of the advocacy program, as well as getting them involved in events. The reasoning behind this is twofold, first – they will know how best to access and advocate to their peer groups, and second – they will be able to relate better and help build the right messages into the advocacy programme.

The next issue is where is best to advertise the positions. I have a few connections with some PhD students through various channels, but we need to be able to get the information out to as many PhD students and early career researchers as possible, and we need a really even spread across all of the departments. There are a number of ways of contacting postgraduate students, and even PhD students using mailing lists, but early career researchers are another story as it is quite a flexible term.

The plan for initial recruitment activity therefore is as follows:

  1. utilise contacts at Kent students union to get an advert in the Postgraduate newsletter along with a piece on ORCID
  2. contact the Graduate School on campus for assistance (the Grad School deals with PG training and skills)
  3. advertise in PG spaces on campus.

Further to this, if takeup is slow there are plans in place to contact the Directors of Graduate studies in each school and ask them to circulate the advert, as well as extending the intake to include other Postgraduates, such as those doing a Masters.

Technical update

I met with a member of the L&RD team the other day, just over coffee, to try and get a better understanding of where we stand with the technical aspects, he has agreed to write a post outlining more specifically how it was done, but here is the breakdown:

KAR (ePrints) – a field has been added to the Kent Academic Repository (KAR) for an ORCID iD and this is due to go live in the next week or so. While the form cannot populate from an ORCID iD, once saved it is able to link out to the record in the ORCID registry, as well as being indexed within KAR so you will be able to search KAR by an individual’s ORCID identifier.

eThesis (Moodle) – the eThesis submission system has now gone live for postgraduate students and the addition of an ORCID field was requested at the testing stage. This has now been successfully added. The system submits the dissertation to the relevant administrators for the department as well as populating, and uploading a copy to KAR. The ORCID field will also be populated in KAR, thus linking the systems together.

KRIMSON (CRIS) – The field had been created in KRIMSON, but due to delays in the project, details are not available at this time.


Webpages and content

Having worked in publishing before, I have had to write lots of different types of content, pages for the web, instruction manuals, posters, leaflets and all sorts of things before, but never at the same time as I have been over the past day or so.

Now the branding and colour scheme for the material is starting to come together, the key messages and content needs to be produced, and that is my job. As part of the project we are aiming to produce:

  • information/promotion webpage
  • formal project webpage
  • posters
  • leaflets
  • information screens
  • PowerPoint slides
  • merchandised gifts
  • instructions/FAQs

Which is quite a range of materials, all requiring a different voice, but to maintain the same message. This has been a very interesting experience for me, having to design a homogenous campaign over so many variations of media, rather than contributing elements to one.

Key to the development of this outreach program is to focus on only one or two messages at a time. The messages that we have decided to focus on in these opening stages are:

  1. The simplicity of an ORCID iD to create and maintain
  2. Uniqueness
  3. External reasons to get an ORCID iD e.g. funding bodies and publishers

The content of two webpages, one formal, and one promotional have been fully written, and the content passed over to the publishing team to be styled and published. I will post links and screenshots where I can. The existing material provided by ORCID was very useful in creating the webpages, providing effective descriptors of more complex concepts surrounding ORCID iDs and a fully functional ORCID registry example entry that can be referred to( – have a look, its quite useful!).

Finally, since I am saving previews of the branding/merchandising for next week’s ORCID pilot progress meeting (hopefully!), I will conclude by saying – iDentify yourself – and move on to my leaflets!


Marketing and merchandising

Just a quick update today:

As my first full week working on Kent Early ORCID comes to a close (although it is worth pointing out that I also have a day job!), I have made a lot of progress in planning, organising, and talking to people, which may not feel like achievment but it is always needed in these early stages, especially for someone new to the project like me.

This week I have had meetings with the IS Publishing team, to discuss web content, designs for the materials for outreach and designing a ‘brand’ for the product. I say ‘brand’ but as ORCID is already established and we aren’t doing anything to their product, the focus being on promoting it and advocating it’s use, that may be the wrong word, ‘title’ or ‘tag’ might be better, possibly even ‘campaign slogan’ – just something to distinguish our material from being generic product marketing, and make it something that can be recognised as supported by the department. We’re lucky that the primary Kent colour is blue – certainly makes our lives easier to work with the green ORCID logo!

My next job is to select the key messages that we want to promote to our chosen audience, and write the text – which is turning out not to be that easy, especially since the audience for ORCID is so varied!

Along with the fun bits about designing webpages and posters, and deciding if we want freebies to hand out, I am also starting the process of recruitment. Within the project plan there is scope for a number of PhD students to perform the bulk of the advocacy work and to contribute, ultimately to its success! For that I need to prepare an outline of responsibilities and a mini job-description, and make contact with appropriate members of staff – its all happening at once!


First steps

Now that the new term is approaching, work is able to begin on the Kent Early ORCID project. We made the decision to hold back on the project over the summer vacation due to the absence of the majority of staff and students. Any postgraduates and PhD students that were around were writing, and if they weren’t, they were preparing to head off on well-deserved holidays! This is significant because this project relies on postgraduates, PhD students and early career researchers as the focus of the project, as well as needing to recruit a team to be part of it moving forward.

Now the project has been able to take its first steps, let me introduce myself as the Project Officer and the team working on the project so far.

Project Sponsor:

Simon Kerridge, Director of Research Services

Project Manager:

Lesley Gould, Faculty Liaison Librarian (Sciences)

Project Officer:

Kirsty Wallis

As the project officer, I will be the primary voice on this blog, and will be sharing logoprogress, ideas and plans with everyone as the project progresses. The integration of ORCID into our institutional repository and other systems has already taken place, and I plan to get one of our L&RD team responsible for this to do a guest post in the near future about this process and how it went (but I’ll keep you posted on this!).

This week I will mostly be concerned with research and planning, it will be valuable for me to spend time getting myself up to speed on all of the other projects and implementations already out there. The ORCID web pages have been invaluable, especially their resources for outreach, and the slideshare page I discovered with numerous presentations about ORCID implementations, and some from the ORCID team themselves.

Next steps are to start working on some internal communication and webpages to explain who we are, what we’re doing, what ORCID is and what the benefits are.

If you want to know more, check back or email me on the address above.

Wish me luck!




Welcome to the blog of the JISC-ARMA funded project at the University of Kent, entitled Early Kent ORCID.Please find below an introduction to the project and its primary aims. A full project plan can be found in the menu above which will be updated as required.

The University of Kent is at a time of significant development of JISCKent’s services to researchers. We are implementing a new Current Research Information System (CRIS), which is locally named as KRIMSON, and integrating it with our Institutional Repository (IR), Kent Academic Repository (KAR). Alongside this we are supporting researchers to make their work as visible and impactful as possible, and this opportunity to work with Jisc and ARMA to accelerate our plans regarding ORCID is both hugely welcome and in tight synchronisation with our strategic plans.

Please see the JISC-ARMA ORCID pilot project blog for more details about the roots of this project.


  1. To share widely our experiences and reflections with regard to our proposed advocacy approach for ORCID and also our CRIS and IR integrations.
  2. To pilot the centrally-supported use of ORCID at the University of Kent, assess outcomes of the pilot and use this information to build on future ORCID implementation and sign-up at the University of Kent.
  3. To encourage Kent PhD students and early career researchers to sign-up for ORCID. This group are often very mobile at the early stages of their career so a persistent identifier would be particularly useful. They will be able to include the same ORCID in their PhD thesis and in all publications from the beginning of their career.
  4. To employ PhD students/early career researchers (ECRs) to act as ORCID champions in academic schools. This approach will quickly raise awareness of ORCID amongst an active group of trained champions who will then advocate ORCID to their peers, their academic school and the wider Kent academic community on behalf of the core project team. This team will:
    • Become ORCID experts
    • Liaise with specific academic schools and support services
    • Deliver presentations to Researchers at internal meetings
    • Engage in 1-2-1 peer to peer advocacy with researchers
    • Drive take up of the pilot ORCID service
    • Promote best practice in ORCID use amongst new and existing ORCID users.
  5. Increasing ORCID sign-up by University of Kent staff and students. There are currently 92 records on the ORCID registry with a Kent email address and through advocacy we will seek to dramatically increase that number. Our target will be to reach 1000 sign ups by the end of the project.
  6. Ensure ORCID integration during the installation of our CONVERIS Current Research Information System (CRIS), reducing author ambiguity in the CRIS itself and also during transition of information from the CRIS into KAR.
  7. Investigate and pilot ORCID integration in our EPrints institutional repository, Kent Academic Repository (KAR).
  8. Incorporate use of ORCID in the submission process for PhD eTheses.
  9. Examine and report on the potential of ORCID IDs to aid effective reporting internally, back to funders, HEFCE, HESA and other agents.