More Case Studies

Candidate Guide

Provides information on different selection methods that you may encounter in your job search. Read The Candidate Guide

exploreWalk With...


Learn more about our friends in South Africa

Case Studies

A Chairman for East Cheshire Hospice

ECH logoOccupying a unique place in the heart of the Cheshire communities it serves, East Cheshire Hospice is committed to celebrating life, with a mission to ‘make every day count’. The Hospice enjoyed its 25th Anniversary in 2013 and its supporting team of 600 volunteers aims to provide the highest quality of care and support for those suffering from life-limiting illnesses.

Wickland Westcott was chosen to assist the Hospice in the search to identify its next Chairman to replace the current incumbent ahead of her retirement later in the year. This represented a challenging brief as the role is non-remunerated, with a significant time commitment, requiring a Chairman who would identify closely with the Hospice’s mission and take on the role with dedication and enthusiasm.  The specification was for a Chairman with a proven non-executive and senior executive track record and capable of leading an experienced and highly committed Board of Trustees. The Hospice sector is experiencing considerable change and challenge as government funding reduces and a key aspect of this search was therefore to identify a candidate with extensive contact networks, who would be prepared to devote a significant amount of time to networking and assisting with fundraising activities.  This is a daunting task given the extremely competitive nature of fundraising within a North-west market dominated by a handful of high profile potential donor organisations.

Identifying non-executive directors prepared to take on non-remunerated roles is not easy, as many NEDs will not consider this type of opportunity and, of those who will, most will include only one within their portfolio, resulting in a very small pool of potential candidates.  In this case the pool was further reduced as the position of the Hospice within the community naturally led to a preference for candidates who lived locally.

Wickland Westcott’s strategy comprised a wide-ranging search, encompassing a broad spectrum of private and public sector organisations in the region, supported by online advertising. The proposition presented to potential candidates emphasised the challenges and rewards associated with this unique opportunity – specifically to guide an organisation through an ever-changing political and economic landscape. Delivering the message directly to potential candidates through search meant that a significant number of high profile individuals, who might not otherwise have considered a role in the Hospice sector, were able to be included on the shortlist.

The search delivered a strong field of candidates and the Hospice chose a Chairman-elect with extensive UK and international experience gained across highly competitive and change-focused private and not-for-profit organisations.

Paul Morrissey, Chairman of the Selection Panel, commented of Wickland Westcott:  “Ever since your appointment, you have honoured every commitment that you made; you have kept in close contact with us throughout the process, you scoured the market as thoroughly as we could have hoped, your list of candidates contained probably more people than we were expecting, and the candidates were drawn from a wide range of backgrounds. We believe we have selected a high quality person who will be able to lead the Hospice successfully through the next stage of its evolution, and this is due, in no small measure, to your efforts on our behalf so, again, many thanks from us all.”