DVML recruitment drive costs $51,300

David Davies.
David Davies.
Dunedin Venues Management Ltd spent $51,307.45 on an international search to replace former chief executive David Davies that eventually led back to one of the company's own, it has been confirmed.

The company last month announced DVML operations director Darren Burden had been appointed to replace Mr Davies as chief executive.

Figures released to the Otago Daily Times this week - following an official information request - showed DVML spent $51,307.45 on the search, involving 109 candidates including 90 from outside New Zealand.

That included the cost of using Select Recruitment, of Dunedin, to conduct the recruitment drive, although DVML chairman Sir John Hansen would not release a breakdown of DVML's bill.

The bill was less than the $66,571.90 spent by the Dunedin City Council in 2009 to recruit Mr Davies, which involved 84 candidates from within New Zealand and abroad.

However, it appeared DVML could recoup some of the cost of the latest recruitment drive from savings made by appointing Mr Burden.

Mr Davies was on an annual salary of up to $250,000, including an at-risk portion linked to performance, and would not receive a final payout "beyond his normal remuneration", Sir John said.

Mr Burden would be on an annual salary of $200,000, with a $25,000 at-risk portion on top, which reflected his "valuable yet different" skills and experience, Sir John said.

Unlike the hunt that led to Mr Davies in 2009, candidates making the shortlist earlier this year had not been flown to Dunedin for interviews, Sir John said.

Instead, all those from outside Dunedin were interviewed over the internet, using Skype, he said.

Initially, 26 candidates - including 21 from abroad - were shortlisted for interviews and testing, he said.

That list was later reduced to 13 - including eight international candidates - before being whittled down again to the final five candidates, including two from abroad and three within New Zealand, he said.

Mr Burden's appointment was announced on September 3 and he began his new role on September 24.

Mr Davies flew out last Friday.


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