Employer Recruiting Policies

The Office of Career Services (OCS) partners with employers to promote job and internship opportunities to students. Employers that utilize and benefit from OCS promotional resources, including but not limited to the OCS Recruiting Program, career fairs, information sessions, and coffee chats/office hours, agree to the following fees and policies.

Please remember that employers who violate any aspect of the Employer Partner & OCS Recruiting Program will be subject to penalties, including possible suspension from OCS promotional channels.

Employer Code of Conduct

Harvard University is committed to maintaining a safe and healthy educational and work environment and to building an inclusive community where students from all backgrounds, ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientation, race and socio-economic status feel welcomed, valued and respected. Participants are reminded to be respectful of difference and sensitive to conduct that may be perceived as disrespectful or inappropriate. Participants are also reminded of Harvard University’s Policy on Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment. Employers and alumni are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner in all interactions with students (both on and off campus) and refrain from any one-on-one activities with undergraduate students where alcohol is involved (refer to the NACE Principles for Professional Practice for more information). We thank you for your work supporting Harvard students in their career development.

Non-Discrimination Policy

Harvard University is committed to selecting faculty and staff without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, creed, national origin, ancestry, age, protected veteran status, disability, genetic information, military service, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or other protected status. Harvard also expects that outside agencies with which it contracts will comply with all applicable antidiscrimination laws.

Restricted Recruiting Dates

No employer-led educational sessions, information sessions, and interviews, including off-campus and virtual interviews, or other recruiting activities may take place during Harvard’s Reading and Exam Periods
Spring 2022: 4/29/22 – 5/14/22
Fall 2022: 12/2/22 – 12/17/22

ALL Event Reporting

ALL employer events must be reported via Crimson Careers PRIOR to the event date.

  • This includes virtual events and events in the Harvard Square area (events with student groups, alumni events where students are invited, events at local restaurants, etc.).

Dress Code: In following with our colleagues at Harvard Business School, we encourage students to attend networking and recruiting events in “smart” casual or business casual attire. We are asking students to refrain from suits and follow our more casual dress guidelines, which include khakis, dress pants, skirts, button-down long sleeve shirts, sweater sets, blouses, etc.

Second Round Interview Policy

All employer partners agree to extend the following minimum considerations when arranging interviews. Every effort should be made to accommodate candidates’ class and first-round interview schedules, as well as summer experience if interviews occur over the summer. Students should not be asked to take time off from a summer internship or other experience for an interview.

  • One or more alternative dates must be offered to students for second round interviews.
  • Employers may not assign students a second round interview time slot without offering options.

Offer Policy

Harvard’s conviction is that students must have the opportunity to explore in order to make effective decisions. In conjunction with our faculty and deans, we are committed to the transformative purposes of a liberal arts and sciences education and supporting students as they gain a sense of what they want to do with their gifts and talents, assess their values and interests, and learn how they can best serve the world. A student who makes a hasty or ill-considered decision regarding employment precludes his or her exploration of these options which can lead to reneging on job offers. We appreciate your partnership in extending students time to reflect on the right next step for them.

A. Offer Decision Timeline


All employers that utilize and benefit from OCS resources* are asked to extend the following timetable to Harvard candidates. OCS maintains that students should have at least through the end of their summer 2022 experience to decide about opportunities beginning in 2023. After that point, 2-week or longer decision windows, or a decision window mutually agreeable between the student and employer, are acceptable. Employers are asked to consider requests for additional flexibility on a case by case basis.

 Date/Timing of Offer:  Acceptance Deadline:
Full-time or Intern offer extended prior to September 1, 2022 End of summer 2022 experience (August 2022)
Full-time or Intern offer extended September 1, 2022 or later 2 weeks from Date of Offer or a decision window mutually agreeable between the student and employer


 Date/Timing of Offer:  Acceptance Deadline:
Full-time or Intern offer extended October 22, 2021 or later 2 weeks from Date of Offer 

B. OCS Resources*

OCS Resources = career fairs, networking nights, information sessions, coffee chats/office hours, interviews scheduled in Crimson Careers, events or application deadlines promoted on OCS calendar/email lists, etc.

C. No Exploding Offers

We expect employers to honor all offers made to students.  Exploding offers are prohibited and refer to any condition that places undue pressure on the student to accept early (e.g., “We have 10 offers outstanding for 8 openings and will accept the first 8 students who accept,” or “We will extend an offer if you agree to accept today,” etc.).

D. Expectation of Written Offers

All employers should extend offers in writing and be prepared to exhibit written offers to the Harvard Employer Relations Team.  Please examine the contract you ask students to sign very carefully.  Employers who rescind or alter contract conditions after both parties have signed will be subject to penalties which may include suspension from Harvard recruiting activities.

Please remember that any employer found to be in violation of these Policies will be subject to penalties which include suspension from OCS resources, including but not limited to career fairs, recruiting events, or denial of early registration privileges for future recruiting cycles.

Email Policy

Harvard does not permit blanketing students with emails. Messages must not misrepresent the identity of the sender and should not “broadcast” indiscriminately to large numbers of individuals. Only those students who have given your organization their email address should be contacted. Employers may reach out to student organizations for help with promotion and partnership but may not have their programs or events posted on House email lists.

Referral Policy

OCS follows the guidance of NACE, the National Association of Colleges and Employers, which states that universities should post opportunities openly for all interested candidates rather than make specific student referrals. Employers are asked to follow this guidance.