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Allen Lane was approached to engage in a competitive tender process for the recruitment of an Executive Director Business Services at National Lottery Heritage Fund, following the retirement of the long standing incumbent.
We were delighted to be awarded the contract to manage the recruitment campaign on behalf of the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
We spent time at the beginning of the campaign to get to know the organisation, the Chief Executive and key stakeholders. As the previous Executive Director had been in post for a number of years, was a highly respected and cherished member of the Senior Leadership Team, it was imperative that the new Executive Director of Business Services would live up to the same expectations. As the role hadn’t been recruited to for such a long time, guidance was needed about the market rate for the salary, as well discussions to really understand the role itself, so that person specification would reflect what the new version of the Executive Director role would look like.
Many factors contributed to making this a complex recruitment campaign. Owing to the ‘Levelling Up Agenda’ it was a nationwide search and could be based at any of the Heritage Fund’s 12 offices. Candidates needed to have experience of a multi-faceted leadership role in addition to Finance, with a demonstrable experience of managing large and complex budgets of comparable size to the National Lottery Heritage Fund’s £360m annual income. Furthermore, the successful candidate needed to be confident in managing stakeholder relationships at not only at the most senior level, but political too. Therefore we were looking for someone who had been in a senior role within defined sectors as well as significantly sized public sector organisation.
From the detailed briefings we were able to create a fantastic microsite – Home | Lottery Fund (allenlanerecruitment.wixsite.com) that was eye catching, informative and really captured the essence of the National Lottery Heritage Fund. The organisation, vision, values, strategy and role were clearly outlined.
The role was also advertised on a number of tried and tested platforms. Throughout the advertising period we contacted our network of active and passive job seekers and launched a targeted headhunting campaign.
With such a wide brief (thinking sector, size, functions managed, team size, complexity, geographical location) our team had many aspects to consider when forming opinions on who to target with the headhunting endeavours and to consider whilst assessing the suitability of candidates.
The combined resourcing activities yielded a very diverse list of candidates from the length and breadth of the United Kingdom. 95 CVs were received, 63 of which resulted in full applications (CV, supporting statement, D&I data captured).
All 63 full applications were reviewed by Allen Lane. 40 of which met the minimum basic criteria and were subsequently graded into A, B, C as to how closely they aligned to the brief. It was these 40 applications that formed a ‘Longlist’ which were shared with National Lottery Heritage Fund for review and discussion. From the Longlist, 12 candidates were taken forward for the assessment stage with Allen Lane resulting in 8 recommended for interview, then upon further discussion at the shortlist meeting, the panel decided on the final 6 that were to be invited for interview with the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
After a successful round of interviews, the preferred candidate was invited for an informal coffee with the Chief Executive where both were able to explore the ‘fit’ from a personal perspective to ensure both parties felt confident in a conducive professional partnership. This resulted happily in an offer being made and accepted by the candidate who started in June 2023.
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