County agrees to spend $5,500 more to recruit new county administrator

Posted 1/28/22

 

 

Jefferson County commissioners agreed this week to devote another $5,500 to the recruitment effort for a new county administrator.

During last week’s board meeting, …

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County agrees to spend $5,500 more to recruit new county administrator

Posted

 

 

Jefferson County commissioners agreed this week to devote another $5,500 to the recruitment effort for a new county administrator.

During last week’s board meeting, commissioners met virtually with Steve Worthington of Prothman, an executive search firm based in Issaquah, to talk about amending the company’s contract with the county.

Worthington detailed the firm’s plan to find applicants for the county administrator position, and advertising efforts that are planned to create a pool of applicants.

The county inked a deal last April with Prothman for its search efforts, but the agreement, with a top end of $99,999, had a not-to-exceed limit of $19,500 for the executive recruitment piece of the company’s professional services. With roughly $951 left within the $19,500 limit, Worthington had estimated new recruitment costs would amount to roughly $4,000.

County commissioners said increasing the amount for the recruitment effort was worth the money.

Commissioner Heidi Eisenhour said the county should not be penny-wise but pound foolish on where it looks to advertise for applicants.

“It doesn’t sound like a huge amount of money,” Eisenhour said of the suggested increase.

“Weigh that against getting a really good county administrator, and it’s a drop in the bucket,” she said. “I would err on the side of getting the word out more broadly.”

County officials had earlier decided to offer a new salary range for the county’s top job, with a range of $135,000 to $160,000 annually.

Commissioner Greg Brotherton asked Worthington if the salary boost would assist in attracting more candidates to the job.

“Certainly the pay raise does definitely help,” Worthington replied.

He noted another search Prothman was doing at the same time as Jefferson County during its search last year for applicants, and how a search elsewhere for a comparable position resulted in different candidates.

“I believe that was primarily because of pay range,” Worthington said.

“This brings it more in line with the market,” he said of the new salary range offered by Jefferson County for the county administrator position. “I think that should help us all.”

“It’s a different time now, as well,” Worthington added. “There’s enough time that has passed that it’s going to be a fresh recruitment. The pool has changed. And also being into a new year, changes the pool as well.

“Having said all that, you never know. It’s fishing,” Worthington said.

Still, the county has a good chance of finding applicants, he noted.

Commissioners approved an amendment with its contract with Prothman to increase the $19,500 limit to $25,000, and upward adjustment of $5,500.

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