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85CF64DE69A05454872589DD005A01BB Hearing Summary


Date Jun 29, 2023      
Location SCR 357

Presentation concerning legislative agency director appointment processes in other states - Committee Discussion Only

10:22:40 AM  
Natalie Wood, National
Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), gave an overview of NCSL and what
her presentation will include, which she stated will be that strong staff
and strong management make for strong legislatures, there is no one correct
way to hire a director, and hires tend to be a reflection of the culture
of what a legislature values.
10:26:49 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
explained that NCSL has been doing a lot of work on retention and turnover
and have discovered that managers play the most key role in retaining staff.
10:27:57 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
went into detail about what other states have done to select new directors
and how other states have set up their hiring processes.
10:30:55 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
explained that in other states where a committee selected a candidate,
they often used a subcommittee to review resumes and bring the top ones
before the whole committee. She also explained that having a set timeline
and set interview questions ready to go helps the process.
10:32:37 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
mentioned how important it is to have a solid job description and discuss
key features to look for in candidates such as prioritizing legislative
10:33:50 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
explained that all the legislatures she talked to did both an internal
and national search for candidates.
10:35:48 AM  
No questions from
the committee.
10:35:57 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
explained the pros and cons of hiring internally versus externally and
that most legislatures hire externally when they are looking for a cultural
shift in the office and the legislative institution is ready to accommodate
that sort of cultural shift.
10:37:00 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
brought up that a new major concern for candidates in today's world is
work-life balance and time-off flexibility and capabilities to work from
10:38:15 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
mentioned that it's important to listen to and consult with your HR director
during the process and also brought up possibly thinking about having a
probation period or check-in with the candidate a bit after hiring.
10:39:24 AM  
Senator Gardner asked
about her thoughts on having legislators outside of the committee as part
of the interviews.
10:40:14 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
explained that they should first evaluate the strengths of the committee
members and that it is an asset that the committee has members with legal
10:41:36 AM  
Senator Moreno asked
if she knows of any experiences where there weren't many applicants that
applied and what should be done if that happens.
10:42:00 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
explained that candidate pools have been smaller in the last few years
but that the legislatures have been satisfied with the quality of candidates
and that it's important to have a hiring timeline where you won't lose
applicants to other offers.
10:43:17 AM  
Representative Soper,
vice chair, asked if the other legislatures had processes for deciding
how many candidates they wanted to interview before moving to next steps.
10:43:58 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
stated that the other legislatures did not and instead just based their
processes on how many candidates ended up applying.
10:45:28 AM  
Representative Weissman
commented on Mrs. Wood's point that legislatures tended to hire internally
and emphasized the value of having external candidates as comparisons to
internal candidates.
10:46:35 AM  
Natalie Wood, NCSL,
answered that the interview process can help people think about long-term
goals for the institution and that external candidates can bring valuable
ideas for future visions for the organization as a fresh perspective while
new internal candidates can hit the ground running as they know exactly
how things operate already.
10:51:51 AM  
Senator Gonzales,
chair, thanked Mrs. Wood for her presentation.

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