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Ark Ventures, part of the Ark charity, partnered Allen Lane once again to lead the recruitment of a Finance Director to join their ever expanding portfolio.
Owing to internal promotion, Ark Ventures, part of the Ark charity, partnered Allen Lane once again to lead the recruitment of a Finance Director to join their ever expanding portfolio. Ark is an education charity that exists to make sure that all children, regardless of their background, have access to a great education and real choices in life. Ark supports Ark Schools who are a multi-academy trust, with 39 schools and a turnover of c£240m. In addition, an impressive capital build was under way, a high risk project to build an innovative education hub for mission aligned organisations.
A comprehensive brief enabled us to understand the requirements. The Finance Director role was to assume responsibility for all the different ventures within the Ark charity. The successful candidate would be able to provide a high-quality finance service to a range of organisations, from start-ups to established charities. They would have strong financial management skills, a clear sense of how management information should be presented to guide decision making and experience of managing financial resources to have the greatest impact. The successful candidate would be excited to work in a dynamic and ambitious organisation, able to manage multiple priorities and enthusiastic about the role excellent financial management plays in a charity’s impact. They would also need to have oversight of the EdCity project, a £150m investment to create an education hub, new affordable homes, a modern office building, and improved community facilities to White City. In terms of background, candidates could come from the Not-for-Profit, wider public sector, or private sector.
We put together eye catching digital assets including a comprehensive candidate pack which really encapsulated the story of both Ark and the role itself, a timetable and commitment to Diversity and Inclusion. In particular, a compelling welcome letter from the Chief Operating Officer really engaged the audience. A branded advert was created, and comprehensive advertising plan agreed then launched.
Following a multi-pronged approach of advertising, exploring our existing network and identifying key players in the market a longlist of candidates was identified. This was not without challenges. Launching the campaign just before the summer holidays made for a more challenging search. Application volumes were lower than expected, candidates were on annual leave and in general, candidate engagement was harder to facilitate. To mitigate these challenges, we adopted an agile approach which included a longer advertising window, offering flexibility with pre-interviews and holding some virtually if candidates were out of the country on key dates in the process. In fact, the successful candidate dialled in on Teams from abroad for the first preliminary interview!
This led to combined total of 74 applications, a diverse mix of candidates who had relevant experience gained from the private and Not-for-Profit sectors. 12 long list interviews were conducted by Allen Lane, resulting in a presentation of 5 candidates to be shortlisted with Ark. Following a two stage interview process with Ark, an offer was made and accepted by the preferred candidate. The successful candidate had a proven track record in the private sector with Plc’s as well as large independents. He had also project managed the finances of large scale construction projects for Balfour Beatty. Furthermore, as school governor, the candidate was able convey his genuine passion for the Education sector and demonstrate how his experience aligned with the needs of the organisation
Discover more organisations within Education that have experienced recruitment success with Allen Lane.