The Columbia City Council will meet for a four-hour, closed-door session on Thursday to interview city manager recruiter firms.
Mayor Brian Treece said he prefers a firm with experience working in Missouri and in city manager search processes.
” I think ultimately the firm we choose has to have some Midwest sensibilities,” Treece said. “Some cultural competency to Columbia.”
He said there is no deadline to select a city manager but there is a sense of urgency.
The average cost of each firm is in the low to mid-$20,000 range.
The nine firms bidding for the job are:
CPS HR Consultants Management Partners The Novak Consulting Group Strategic Government Resources EFL Associates Serpico Talent Solutions Springsted/Waters Slavin Management Consultants GovHR USA
Council members said two of the firms would not be considered. Serpico Talent Solutions gave a “non-responsive” bid, and EFL Associates’ cost nearly triple the price of the other seven firms.
During a city council meeting on Dec. 17, several city council members said they had a few front-runners in mind, but choices varied.
Columbia’s finance director and police chief position open.
” All of those vacancies make Columbia a very attractive place I believe for a potential city manager candidate to really pick their own team,” Treece said.
He said he could see the city holding a couple town hall meetings to hear input from the community.
” We really ask the public what they want in the person that leads the city in day-to-day types of operations,” he said.
The city used a search firm in 2010 and 2011 to find a city manager, which ended in former City Manager Mike Matthes’ hiring. The search cost Columbia at least $20,000.