The Killer Committee

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    Employer Services
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A search committee can be the best part of a search process--or the most frustrating for a recruiter. Putting in the time at the beginning pays dividends as the search progresses.  

  • Committee membership. For some, asking someone to serve on a search committee is like asking them to help you move: they say yes…begrudgingly. Why? Because, to participate takes a great deal of time. Support your committee by being well prepared and preparing them well. 
    • Wide representation. include invested partners from outside your department if possible; it shows candidates how valued the position is to the division and/or campus, and can provide an outlet for candidates for “non-departmental” perspective.
    • 4-6 members. More than that, it can be overwhelming to coordinate for the recruiter and overkill for the candidate.
  • Administration. Provide as much material to the committee as possible--at the beginning. Include all relevant material about the position and search process. It helps committee members document their participation and keep it separate from their day-to-day responsibilities. 
    • Charge. Have your Director/AVP/VP charge the committee. This can provide clarity and encouragement, and show how important the position is to the organization. This should kick off any search.
    • Training. Avoid the cringe of an inappropriate question or unprepared committee member through training. Review EO expectations and the materials that support and administrate the search.
    • Recommendation vs. decision. Does the committee select the candidate for offer or make a recommendation? Make sure to review the process with the committee to avoid confusion at the finish line. 
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