Org 8 - Recruiting Managers


Part 8:  Recruiting the Management Team


To identify the number and type of managers needed, the CEO (and perhaps a committee of board members) will review the activities that the organization will perform. The number of people and breakdown of duties will be determined by volume of donated objects, number of people to be served, and the different types of AT provided. If the organization is involved with mobility devices, durable medical equipment, computers and assistive educational devices, it is likely to require more staff than an organization limiting itself to one area. Many nonprofits have a small number of paid staff who supervise the work of a large number of volunteers, so there may be management positions to fill.


The authority to select managers should be delegated to the CEO. After the organization is established, the interviewing team may include other managers, employees or volunteers. In Section III, theories of management were discussed to identify how the organization would function. Now it is important to create a management structure to implement the theoretical framework. Who will do the work? Who will ensure that goals are met and policies and procedures followed?


Identifying roles and responsibilities


All organizations need clearly defined roles and responsibilities for the individuals who participate in policymaking and operations. These should not necessarily be confused with titles. The function of the person in the organization is a role. The activities for which they will be held accountable (whether performed personally or through the supervision of others) are the responsibilities. While titles are usually descriptive of the role of the person, they are also sometimes used as forms of recognition or reward. For example, individuals who head up a functional area may be called managers or department heads in one organization and vice presidents in another.


Even without knowledge of the size or scope of an organization, it is possible to describe some essential roles and responsibilities. Not all of these will exist as separate positions in a very small organization. Two or more of the roles may be combined and become the responsibility of one person. Some functions (roles) may be contracted to a third-party provider.


Identifying paid versus volunteer roles


When planning a management structure for the AT organization, it is good to determine which tasks are best suited for volunteers. While some may be dedicated and keep a regular schedule, it may not be wise to place time-critical roles in the hands of volunteers. Basic roles and responsibilities are outlined in the table.





Chief Executive Officer, Center Director or Manager


Manages the ongoing operations of the organization. Identifies and maintains sources of funding. Recruits, trains and supervises staff. Acquires and assigns AT devices. Reports to Board and/or Advisory Council.

Administrative Assistant

(Secretarial/ Clerical Support)

Maintains requisite records for the organization: user applications, communications, device inventory, worker schedules, volunteer records. Assists users. Maintains employee applications and files. Ensures compliance with privacy and records laws.

Finance/Accounting Manager


Maintains financial records. Provides valuations for donations. Tracks donations and contributions. Maintains payroll records, accounts payable and accounts receivable. Prepares regular financial reports.

Operations Manager

Repairs and/or refurbishes AT devices. Oversees pick up and delivery of AT devices. May maintain delivery vehicle(s).

Human Resources Manager

Oversees recruitment, hiring and retention. Ensures compliance with labor and non-discrimination laws.

Community Relations or Public Relations Manager

Promotes the org in the community. May play key role in planning fundraising activities.

Roles and Responsibilities


Organization charts


Organization charts offer graphic models of management structure. Traditional organization charts are created with boxes for positions/departments and lines showing reporting relationships. A simpler means of showing structure is a text model using outlining indentation to show subordinate relationships.


An organization chart is helpful in analyzing how management responsibilities are divided, and in providing an overview of the structure and reporting relationships.


Preparing management job descriptions


Job descriptions are a key for recruitment and performance evaluation. See the Human Resources module for guidance and a tool for creating a job description for each desired position. Creating highly specific job descriptions for the organization increases the chance for success.


Proposing a management structure


The CEO should submit a proposed management structure for board approval. This should include an organization chart, job descriptions for each position, and a proposed salary budget. This proposal should take into account the realistic availability of resources and what each position will contribute to the organization.


Determining salaries and benefits


Some organizations are managed and staffed entirely by volunteers. If that is the case, compensation is not an issue. If the organization has any paid staff, compensation is a serious issue. Nonprofit organizations are not permitted to pay employees more than “reasonable compensation” for the services rendered. This falls under the IRS rules for tax-exempt organizations. See Reasonable Compensation in the Human Resources module.


Human Resources and Finance will work with the CEO to determine an appropriate salary structure for the organization. Benefits, if any are offered, will also be determined by these functions within the organization.


Recruiting applicants


After securing approval of the management and staffing plan, the CEO must complete the management team. Even though the CEO will make the final decision, it is important to develop a cohesive team. While different skills, and even different management styles are desirable, commitment to a common management philosophy is important. The person(s) filling the Human Resources role(s) will assist with identifying applicants. See Recruiting Applicants in the Human Resources module.


Interviewing applicants


The interview team for a new manager or supervisor may include managers who have already been hired and someone who works or volunteers in the area for which the manager will have responsibility.


A deadline should be set for applications. Interviews should be scheduled only after complete applications are received.


The interview team should screen the applications and resumes. Those who do not meet the stated qualifications should be eliminated. If a large number meet the requirements, the reviewers should look for individuals with experience that is most similar to the organization’s needs. The candidate list can then be narrowed to the three or four individuals most qualified individuals. Educational credentials may be verified before the interview, but reference checking may be postponed until the interviews are complete.


Preparing for the interviews


Interviewers may need training. This need not be a complex, formal process, but it needs to be addressed. An experienced person should explain what will happen and mock interviews may be used to make inexperienced interviewers feel comfortable. Questions should be focused on the skills and responsibilities identified in the job description. It is also important for interviewers to understand what they cannot ask candidates (i.e., questions that violate anti-discriminations laws such as age, race, nationality, marital status, spouse, if they have children, child-care arrangements, etc.)


The interviewing process should be determined in advance. Group interviews are popular, but there may be occasions for individual interviews. A special form of group interviewing called behavioral interviewing is currently in vogue. Candidates are asked to cite specific instances and experiences in which they used specific skills. If this format is used, the questions should be typed and shared with the candidate before the interview begins. The person should be given time to think of instances that can be used in responses.


Regardless of whether behavioral interviewing is used, the questions should be prepared in advance. The interviewing group should meet for a “dry run” or rehearsal of an interview, clarifying who will ask which questions. The same questions should be asked of each candidate. That does not preclude asking follow-up questions if responses to the standard questions lead in a different direction or provide supplemental information.


The applicant should be told in advance if testing will be used. It is quite common in large corporations to ask candidates to undergo various forms of aptitude or psychological testing. Many instruments are available to offer indications of how an individual will perform. Some indicate how the individual’s decision-making changes under stress; some profile behavior in teams.


A common set of criteria for assessing candidates should be determined in advance. The team must decide how the candidates will be assessed. Doing so facilitates comparison among candidates and provides an objective means of measuring the candidate against defined expectations.

What kind of opportunity will the applicant be given to learn about the organization and prospective coworkers? Interviewing is a getting-to-know-you process for both parties. Opportunities should be created for the applicant to see more than the interview room. The applicant needs to be given a sense of the physical surroundings, the work flow and the interpersonal dynamics of the team to have some feel for what it would be like to work there. This may be accomplished with a tour of the organization and with opportunities to meet employees or volunteers. This is sometimes awkward if the person is a candidate for CEO or a management position in a well-established organization.



Conducting the interviews


A location should be chosen that provides privacy and comfort for members of the team and the applicants. If behavioral interviewing is used, the candidate should be given the questions and 10-15 minutes allowed before beginning the interview. The candidate should be made comfortable: asked about any personal needs, and offered a beverage (water, coffee, tea, etc.)


The interviewers should ask the prepared questions and practice good listening skills. Follow-up questions should be asked where appropriate, but the interviewers should stay focused on learning about the candidate. Interviewers don’t learn much if they do all the talking. They should take notes during the sessions.


At the end, the person coordinating the interviews should ask the candidate about his/her compensation and benefits needs and expectations, and reiterate that references, experience and educational credentials will be checked. The applicant should be given adequate time to ask questions of the interviewing team. This is a two-way process. The applicant needs to learn about the organization and prospective co-workers.


Making the final decision


The team may hold a post-interview meeting to discuss responses. Comparing reactions to candidate responses is often helpful. Points of concern should be noted, especially if no consensus exists about the best candidate. The final decision probably rests with the person to whom the manager will report, but the reaction of coworkers should be given serious consideration.


When a decision has been reached, references and education should be checked. The preferred candidate should be contacted in person (if convenient) or by telephone to extend the offer and specific terms should be discussed. If accepted, an offer letter should be prepared specifying salary and benefits, starting date, terms of employment, and any contingent actions, such as satisfactory background check.


After an offer is accepted, the other candidates should be notified promptly that they were not selected. A letter of thanks should be sent for the time they spent interviewing. This is not just courtesy, but also good public relations. A press release should be sent to the local newspaper(s) and radio and television stations announcing the new appointment of the manager. This should include a very brief biographical sketch of the individual, and it should reiterate the mission of the organization. See Press releases for guidance and an example.





Please note that by selecting an Internet link you will be directed to an external site, and the Pass It on Center does not control the content of the site.



This work is supported under a five-year cooperative agreement # H235V060016 awarded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, and is administered by the Pass It On Center of the Georgia Department of Labor – Tools for Life.  However, the contents of this publication do not necessarily represent the policy or opinions of the Department of Education, or the Georgia Department of Labor, and you should not assume endorsements of this document by the Federal government or the Georgia Department of Labor.


File Name File Size
There are no attachments for this article

Other Information

Title: Org 8 - Recruiting Managers
Module: Organization
Author: Trish Redmon
Audience: Administrator
Sub Title:
Organization Source: Pass It on Center
Last Reviewed: 01-23-2009 9:14 AM