SDHB seeks finance person with 'savvy'

A person adept at avoiding ''land mines'' is sought to lead the Southern District Health Board to financial health.

More than two years after disestablishing the role, when it merged with planning and funding, the cash-strapped board is recruiting a finance director with the help of recruitment firm Sheffield.

The successful applicant, a chartered accountant, would direct financial plans and accounting practices, the job description said.

Under the title ''political savvy'', the description said applicants should demonstrate an ability to ''manoeuvre through complex political situations effectively and quietly''.

Applicants would anticipate ''land mines'', and plan accordingly.

Last month, the board confirmed it had paid $358,000 to Pricewaterhouse- Coopers (PWC) to help improve its financial performance. The board has refused to release PWC's report, but said it identified $30 million in savings over three years.

The board has previously rejected a suggestion that getting rid of its chief finance role, and other changes, put it into a position where it needed to source outside help.

Initially, the board handled the recruitment in-house. Human resources director John Pine said, through a spokesman, the original pool of applicants was not big enough, and a recruitment firm was then hired.

eileen.goodwin@odt.co.nz

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