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

Leeds City College

Leeds City College logoLeeds City College is one of the UK’s largest and most successful Education and Training providers, delivering a truly diverse curriculum to over 40,000 students across the Yorkshire region and beyond.  As one of the largest employers in the region, the College has adapted well to the challenges facing the education sector, setting out clear strategic priories - to reduce costs, drive quality and develop new revenue streams to enhance the levels of student experience. To support this level of transformation, the board recognised the importance of introducing an experienced HR Director to support the Executive Leadership Team in delivering their exciting plans for the future.

Acting as a key member of the management team, the new HR Director was tasked with leading the development and delivery of the College’s HR and organisational development strategy, in line with the values and strategic goals. Additionally, the role would support the wider operational base, which involved influencing organisational strategy, structure and processes, whilst leading on the culture change programme to transition to a more customer centric organisation.

Wickland Westcott was chosen to lead the search with a brief to find a talented, commercially-oriented candidate with broad HR leadership experience gained within highly complex and customer-centric organisations. The search strategy focused on identifying established HR Leaders from across Further Education, Higher Education, the wider public sector and importantly private sector organisations. In the case of the private sector, the emphasis was on individuals in large businesses, who would have the knowledge and experience to genuinely create an exciting future for the College. The proposition to candidates majored on the complexity of the operating environment, the opportunity to really influence change and the potential to contribute to the future success of a high profile and influential organisation across Yorkshire. Wickland Westcott’s experience with private sector candidates has taught us that emphasising the value they can add to the sector and the success they can achieve within it, are powerful messages in persuading them to engage in the process.

The search delivered a shortlist comprising five candidates; three of these were from outside the sector. The appointed candidate came from a leading private sector business providing global technical support services.

Chief Executive, Peter Roberts, commented: “This was a critical appointment for the College which would underpin our future plans for the organisation. We required a Search Partner who could not only identify those individuals with a blend of commercial skills and appreciation of the dynamics of the FE Sector but could also persuasively sell our vision for the College. Our chosen candidate brings the right combination of experience and technical expertise to strengthen the senior team, increase our competitive edge and help us to transform the College to meet the needs of this rapidly changing sector.”