How will new council chief be found ... and how much will they earn

·2-min read
How will new council chief be found ... and how much will they earn
How will new council chief be found ... and how much will they earn

HOW should the Isle of Wight Council recruit its new £138,000 top boss?

That is the question councillors will now have to decide.

It follows the green light given for officers to recruit a new chief executive to the authority — four months after its previous holder left.

John Metcalfe, the former chief executive, left at the end of March and has taken up the same role at Cumbria County Council.

Since Mr Metcalfe left, the assistant chief executive and director of strategy, Wendy Perera, has stepped up as interim chief executive.


The council says given the continued challenges for local government including the levelling up agenda, continued impacts of Covid and economic uncertainty, it is imperative to have stable, strategic leadership in place.

There are two recruitment options for the council's appointments and employment committee to consider following a meeting earlier this week — to either use the authority's internal communications team or hire external marketing specialists in a bid to attract more applicants.

It comes after the recruitment of the director of adult social care only received two candidates, with one eventually dropping out.

The price of using the specialists — who are already employed by another part of the council to attract candidates — would be £11,700.

The company would build a 'microsite' with information and videos about what makes the Island great and what the role would entail.

Members of the committee questioned the added expense, for senior management positions already being tight and were worried the campaign would not pay off.

Councillors felt they did not have enough information about the reach a campaign like that might achieve so could not make a decision at that meeting.

They did agree though to start the recruitment process, with the position advertised throughout September.

The successful candidate would be on a yearly salary just over £138,000, which the council says has been determined though market testing.

At his new job in Cumbria, Mr Metcalfe is now on a salary on £170,000.

The time it took for the council to recruit to senior positions was criticised by members as a systemic issue that kept happening.