In The Mandarin (4.2.15) Stephen Easton considers the pros and cons of outsourcing the selection of senior public sector administrators, concentrating particularly on the appointment of the Victorian Police Commissioner.
He quotes Australian National University public policy professor Andrew Podger, who led several federal departments through the 1990s before becoming Australian public service commissioner in 2002, and who said that ‘search firms have their place but suspects a lot of money is wasted on using them unnecessarily for routine executive appointments.’
‘Search firms can be helpful particularly for specialist executive jobs or other jobs where there is good reason to believe the usual suspects (internal candidates, others in closely linked agencies) present a very weak field,’ he told The Mandarin by email.
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