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Recruiting a town clerk

0 votes
Should a current town clerk be involved in the recruitment of his successor?
In my experience outside the council, current postholders are normally excluded from direct involvement in recruiting a successor.
We don't have a clear structure for recruitment, but we do have a Management Committee of 5 councillors who are organising the process, from which I expect 3 will form  the Selection Committee. As I see it, it's fine for the clerk to advise on advertising, but I'm wary of applications going to the clerk, as he's a bit of a control freak who I feel sure will make known his preferences on potential applicants. As the Mayor will be on the Selection Committee, it seems to me that applications would go to him and the current clerk would have no further input. Advice would be welcome, thank you.
asked by (310 points)

4 Answers

0 votes
Edited to clarify my thought process when answering.

There is always a benefit of being involved in the recruitment process as there may be questions raised that only you could answer.  I certainly have fielded questions from prospective replacements on staffing, procedures, facilities, conditions of employment etc.  Councillors are not necessarily aware of the minutiae of the job...
Ultimately it is up to the council and how they want to conduct the recruitment process. They may want to include the Clerk in the writing of the job description and other arms length processes but if the Clerk is leaving on good terms, say for retirement or promotion, why not include them in the interview process?  It is up to the council to decide but there are no hard and fast rules.
answered by (16.8k points)
edited by
0 votes
“Control freak” appears on the list of desirable attributes for involvement in a recruitment process - like never.....

Focusing on minutiae is a quality required in a recruitment process - like never....

Being influenced by an outgoing employee adds value to potential future improvements in employee productivity - like never...

Tasking the existing employee with reviewing current ToRs and proposing draft amendments - that’s certainly got some merit.
Tasking the existing employee with proposing advertising strategy and providing cost estimates - that too certainly has merit.
answered by (6.3k points)
0 votes
We have just recruited a new Town Clerk and had similar reservations about the process. However, our five strong personnel panel did run the process with the guidance of an independent consultant. The current Town Clerk attended the meetings but the panel were happy with the outcome, despite a somewhat drawn out process.
answered by (140 points)
0 votes
Many thanks for the answers here, and apologies for delaying appreciation.
answered by (310 points)

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