Choosing a Municipal Personnel Director

Case Study

Words 1,500

This case study details the hiring process for a senior level manager in the public sector environment. There are three major sections:

The Advertisement

In the recruitment process, an effective advertising is very important. This ad first provides details about the city of “Sunny Skies” and its governance structures and different players. A small city “Sunny Skies” is located in Florida and has a significant population of white retirees and a mix of different ethnic groups and minorities which form a working class. The city has a mayor and a local government council. The next step is the details of the job requirement so that the right people would apply for the job. According to the case, the city has 400 employees and there is a need for a personnel director who is responsible for all the human resource related procedures and actions, which include recruitment, affirmative action, job analysis, job descriptions, performance appraisal and determination of salaries and benefits.

Initial Screening

The shortlisting was done by an independent consultant firm. According to the case, there are 200 applications which were then shortlisted into 12 people, the criteria for this selection was based on:

  • Experience: minimum 10 years of experience in the field of public and business administration and experience in the municipal capacity is preferred.
  • Education: Bachelor’s or Masters Degree in business administration or public administration or human resource management.

The Interviews

The interviews were conducted by the city government officials headed by Assistant City Manager, who interviewed the candidates individually. The interviews were conducted in a structured and pre-determined open-ended format so that each individual was allowed to answer in detail about different things. As the case shows the interview section which is described in depth can be divided into four parts:

Previous Career

The questions in this sections were framed to understand the past career of each candidate and the three questions are designed to understand what the candidate what the candidate believes are his or her strengths and weaknesses in his past professional life.  And what he or she believed was a challenge and how they reacted to it. In addition, the candidates are also asked about their future outlook. This line of questioning will show how the candidates perceive themselves and how they perceive their own professional successes and failures.

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