You are:

Succession Management Web Banner

Selection and assessment

All succession and talent schemes have some element of assessing the individual’s capacity, but the importance of this element to your scheme varies depending on:

  • The purpose and expected benefits;
  • The size and scope of your scheme;
  • The acceptability of assessment within your institution;
  • The number of people involved and the resources available – including whether you already have a competency framework for the roles in question, or are prepared to put time into developing one.

Returning to our definitions of succession and talent may help to illustrate this point. If your scheme focuses on the individual you will probably want to place a greater emphasis on supporting the individual’s own self-perceptions; if it focuses on the roles you will want to ensure the objectivity and independence of the assessment.

We define selection as the initial consideration of who should be assessed. Participants may be selected by their line managers or may self-select, or selection may be via a mix of the two, or may have been done at the point of scheme design as in Nottingham Trent’s scheme.

Our principle is that participation is both inclusive and obligatory. Everyone in the identified feeder groups takes part, and participants’ views and career aspirations are taken into account in the assessment process along with data on their performance and experience. If after going through the process a participant says they are not interested in the role being planned for, that is fine – but it’s not expected that they will rule themselves out beforehand.
Nottingham Trent University

The Assessment Spectrum

The Assessment Spectrum

Once selected for assessment, participants may take part in one or more of a vast array of assessment activities, or in some cases (towards the left of the diagram above) they may assess themselves or provide a CV to demonstrate that they have the required experience. Key elements to bear in mind when designing the more formal assessment systems include:

  • Several perspectives (‘triangulation’);
  • Discussion to make sense of the various elements and reach agreement (involving appropriate stakeholders);
  • In-person feedback to the individual.

You might find it useful to take a look at examples of criteria for assessment from the BBCImperial College London (pdf) and Newcastle University (pdf). You can also read some illustrative quotes about selection and assessment issues from the case study organisations here.

Assessment centre? Development centre?

There is often confusion between the two, not least because the formats may be very similar – simulations, personality profiling, in-tray exercises and the like. The format may be the same but the difference lies in the use that is made of the outputs. Some, like Newcastle's, may be a deliberate combination - an assessment AND development centre.

Read more about assessment in our case study institutions:

Designing the development process is easy and fun, it's selecting people to take part in the process that's really hard. In our talent scheme, line managers conduct an assessment of their eligible staff using a framework of criteria for identifying potential as well as performance. The criteria form an online ‘checklist’ (which can be used for self-nomination as well as nomination by managers).
Imperial College London

Main Menu

  1. Home
  2. Programmes
    1. Programmes
      1. Top Management Programme
      2. Executive Leaders
      3. Global Leadership Programme
      4. Building Financial and Legal Capabilities
      5. Strategic Leadership Programme
      6. Preparing for Senior Strategic Leadership
      7. Leading Departments
      8. Introduction to Head of Department
      9. Transition to Leadership
      10. Women-only Programmes
        1. Aurora
          1. More Information
          2. Dates and Venues for 2015-2016
          3. Demystifying Finance for Aurorans
          4. Guidance for Institutions
          5. Role Models
          6. Meet the Aurora People
          7. Resources
          8. The Longitudinal Study
          9. Aurora Champions
          10. Aurora Films and Photos
          11. View our Tweets
          12. Aurora Mailing List
          13. Aurora Assets
          14. Frequently Asked Questions
          15. Aurora Terms and Cancellations
          16. Aurora competition
        2. Leadership Matters
      11. Introduction to Higher Education
      12. Professional Partnerships
        1. Future Professional Directors
          1. FLP 10 resources
        2. Leading Transformation in Learning and Teaching
      13. Governor Development Programme
        1. Self-Assessment Tool
        2. Student Leaders Campaign
        3. Clerks and Secretaries Professional Development and Leadership Programme
      14. Research Programmes
      15. Diversifying Academic Leadership
    2. In-House Programmes
      1. Change Academy
        1. Change Academy Case Studies
          1. Change Academy: University of Westminster
          2. Change Academy: Loughborough University
          3. Change Academy: York University, Toronto
        2. Change Academy FAQs
      2. Programmes for Head of Department
        1. Leading Departments
        2. Head of Department
        3. Introduction to Head of Department
      3. Research Team Leadership
      4. Leading Teaching Teams
      5. Essentials of Leading Change
      6. Building Strategic Capability
      7. Unlocking Potential Through Performance Management
      8. Cultural Intelligence
      9. Working with Others
        1. Case Study: University College Cork
    3. Conferences and Events
      1. Regional Events
        1. Regional and National Co-ordinators
      2. Network Events
      3. Scottish Events
      4. Welsh Events
    4. Alumni
      1. LF Fellowship
      2. Projects
        1. Projects 2006/07
        2. Projects 2004/05
          1. Professor Uduak Archibong
          2. Professor Teresa Rees CBE AcSS
          3. Dr Peter McCaffrey
    5. MASHEIN
    6. The Prevent Agenda
    7. Programme Dates 2015-16
  3. Consultancy
    1. System Wide Change
    2. Institutional Transformation
      1. Governor Development and Governance Reviews
      2. Support from a change advisor
      3. Change health check
      4. Personal change questionnaire
      5. Supporting internal change consultants
    3. Teams and Individuals
      1. Bespoke and Tailored Programmes
      2. Coaching
        1. Executive Coaching
        2. Team Coaching
        3. Career Coaching Options
        4. Coaching Programmes
      3. Unconscious Bias Workshops
    4. Organisational Development
      1. Working with Top Management Teams
      2. Evaluation and Impact
      3. Collaborations, Alliances and Mergers
      4. Strategic Marketing and Communications
      5. Leadership of the Student Experience
    5. International
      1. Bespoke Programmes
      2. International Partnership and Network Programmes
      3. Previous events
    6. Case studies
    7. Frequently Asked Questions
  4. Research
    1. Publications
      1. Getting to Grips
      2. HELMs
        1. Leading higher education
        2. Motivating and developing leaders
        3. Leadership and work-life balance
        4. Governors' views of their institutions, leadership and governance
      3. Leadership Insights
      4. Management Development Resources
      5. Reports & Reviews
      6. ENGAGE Past Editions
        1. ENGAGE 38 - summer 2015
          1. Editorial: Alison Johns
          2. Summer News
          3. Being on the Board
          4. Cross-sector partnerships: Essex LGBT Alliance
          5. Our alumni
          6. Starter for ten
          7. Projects - Research - Resources
          8. International
          9. Meet our Membership Advisory Group
          10. Take a look at our Leadership Development Programmes
          11. Download Engage38
        2. ENGAGE 37 - spring 2015
          1. Editorial: Alison Johns
          2. Spring News
          3. A baptism of fire
          4. Sustainable excellence: unlocking the potential of a leading global university
          5. Our alumni
          6. Starter for ten: Fiona Larg
          7. Projects - Research - Resources
          8. International
          9. Member spotlight
          10. Take a look at our Leadership Development Programmes
          11. Download Engage37
        3. ENGAGE 36 - autumn 2014
          1. Editorial: Alison Johns
          2. Autumn News
          3. Membership
          4. Mainstreaming equality and diversity
          5. The rise of the career PVC
          6. Our alumni
          7. Professor Pat Bailey
          8. Projects - Research - Resources
          9. Executive Leaders
          10. Leadership Development Programmes
          11. Download Engage36
        4. ENGAGE 35 - summer 2014
          1. Summer News
          2. The Singularity University
          3. Talent Development
          4. Our alumni: Liz Price
          5. Professor Cliff Allan
          6. Projects - Research - Resources
          7. Umeå University Dialogue
          8. History, Examination, Investigations and Treatment
          9. Leadership Development Programmes
          10. Download Engage35
        5. ENGAGE 34 - spring 2014
          1. Dr Mark Pegg
          2. Spring 2014 News
          3. An unorthodox career
          4. Leadership: New thinking for the next decade
          5. Our alumni: Professor Tom Inns
          6. Professor Amanda J. Broderick
          7. Projects - Research - Resources
          8. LF Consulting
          9. The China Study
          10. Staff update
          11. Download Engage34
        6. ENGAGE 33 - autumn 2013
          1. Leadership: the next ten years
          2. Project update
          3. Interview
          4. In Practice
          5. Development
          6. Starter for ten
          7. Research: Staffing Models and Institutional Flexibility
          8. Book Review
          9. Download Engage33
        7. ENGAGE 32 - summer 2013
          1. Change: the new norm
          2. Project update
          3. Interview
          4. In Practice
          5. Development
          6. What our research says:
          7. Leadership Development Programmes
          8. Download Engage32
        8. Engage Unlimited
        9. Engage 2 Book Review
    2. Published Research
      1. 2015 Research
      2. 2014 Research
      3. 2013 Research
      4. 2012 Research
      5. 2011 Research
      6. 2010 Research
      7. 2009 Research
      8. 2008 Research
      9. 2007 Research
      10. Research by Theme
        1. 1. The UK HE System
          1. The Case for Growing STEMM Research Capacity in Wales
          2. The employability agenda and beyond: what are universities for?
          3. Devolution and Higher Education: What next?
          4. Credit Risk? Reviving credit accumulation and transfer in UK higher education
        2. 2. The New HE Economy
          1. Out in Orbit: strategies and trajectories for higher education satellite campuses
        3. 3. Collaboration and Partnership
          1. Leading interdisciplinary Research transforming the academic landscape
          2. Leading interdisciplinarity: creating environments for success
          3. Higher Education Collaborations: Implications for Leadership, Management and Governance
          4. Conversations and Collaborations: The Leadership of Collaborative Projects between Higher Education and the Arts and Cultural Sector
          5. Collaborations and Mergers in HE: Lessons Learned and Future Prospects
          6. What do we know about: Collaborations and Partnerships in Higher Education
          7. Neo-collegiality: restoring academic engagement in the managerial university
          8. Developing and Sustaining Shared Leadership in Higher Education
        4. 4. Governance
          1. Governance in a changing environment: literature review
          2. Governance in a changing environment: thought piece
          3. The governance of private higher education providers in the UK
        5. 5. Leadership in Practice
          1. Leadership of Practice Disciplines in Universities: The case of nurses and teachers
          2. Effective Leadership in Higher Education
          3. Developing Collective Leadership in Higher Education
          4. Humanities Research Leadership in Europe
          5. What do we know about leadership in higher education?
          6. Leading academic talent to a successful future: interviews with leaders, managers and academics
          7. Leading academic talent to a successful future: an international perspective
          8. Academic Leadership: Changing Conceptions, Identities and Experiences in UK Higher Education
          9. In the wings and backstage: exploring the micropolitics of leadership in higher education
        6. 6. Changing Roles, Structures and Careers
          1. Staffing Models and Institutional Flexibility
          2. Professional Managers in UK Higher Education: Preparing for Complex Futures
          3. Performance Management in UK Higher Education Institutions: The need for a hybrid approach
        7. 7. Leadership Development
          1. A Complexity Approach to Leadership Development: Developing Practical Judgement
          2. Leadership development within the UK higher education: its impact on organisational performance, and the role of evaluation
        8. 8. Leading the Student Experience
          1. Leading change in assessment and feedback
          2. Leadership for a better student experience: What do senior executives need to know?
          3. Leading the Student Experience: Academic and Professional Services in Partnership
          4. Exploring Student Leadership
        9. 9. Leading Equality and Diversity
          1. How can we make not break black and minority ethnic leaders in higher education?
          2. Religion in Britain: Challenges to Higher Education
          3. Gender and Higher Education Leadership
          4. The experience of BME academics in higher education: aspirations in the face of inequality
          5. Towards the family friendly university?
          6. Women and Higher Education Leadership: Absences and Aspirations
        10. 10. Internationalisation
          1. Challenges for the leadership of transnational education in higher education: balancing risk and innovation
          2. Using International Recruitment Agents: Risks and Regulation?
          3. Losing our Chains?
          4. Internationalising the curriculum: Design, delivery and depth
          5. Horizon Scanning: what will higher education look like in 2020
          6. Leadership and Management of International Partnerships
          7. Report from the: Programme for University Leaders in the Southern African Region (PULSAR)
          8. The Changing Role of the University Registrar: Challenges and Prospects in Southern African Higher Education Institutions
          9. Registrars and Senior Administrative Officers as Change Leaders in Southern African Universities
          10. Action Learning as a Tool for Change and Development: The Experience of Registrars and Senior Administrative Officers in Southern Africa
          11. Trends in Governance: Universities in the Southern, African Development, Community
      11. Research Order Form
    3. Current Tenders
    4. Commissioned Research
      1. The UK HE System
      2. The New HE Economy
      3. Collaboration and Partnership
      4. Governance
      5. Leadership in Practice
      6. Changing Roles, Structures and Careers
      7. Leadership Development
      8. Leading the Student Experience
      9. Leading Equality and Diversity
      10. Internationalisation
    5. Resources
      1. Diversity
        1. Strategy
          1. Diversity Strategy for 2007-2012
        2. Key Leadership and Diversity Projects
        3. Resources, Publications and Links
        4. Equality Legislation
        5. Diversity Advisory Group
        6. Diversity talks
      2. Organisational Development
        1. OD Mapping Project
        2. ODHE Group
        3. ODHE Group Meetings and Related Resources
      3. Governance
      4. Research Outcomes
        1. The Self Assessment Toolkit
      5. Case Studies
      6. LGM Fund Outcomes
    6. Succession Management
      1. What is it?
        1. Definitions
        2. Visualising the definitions
        3. History of the Concept
        4. Succession in 2005
        5. Key Characteristics
      2. Why do it?
        1. Benefits - Case Studies
          1. BBC
          2. University of Kent
          3. Nottingham Trent University
          4. Imperial College London
          5. Newcastle University
          6. University of Leeds
        2. Focus Finder
          1. Interpreting the Results
          2. Focus Finder Revisited
      3. How it's done
        1. Resources
        2. Making the case
        3. Size and scope
        4. Roles, stakeholders and engagement
        5. Roles, stakeholders and engagement: examples
        6. Selection and assessment
        7. Selection and assessment: examples
        8. Development methods
      4. Case Studies
      5. Tools
    7. Small Development Projects
      1. Small Development Projects 2015
      2. Small Development Projects 2014
      3. Small Development Projects 2013
      4. Small Development Projects 2012
      5. Small Development Projects 2011
      6. Small Development Projects 2010
      7. Small Development Projects 2008-09
      8. Advice from Previous SDP Leaders
    8. ITF Projects
      1. ITF 2014 Phase 2
      2. ITF 2012 Phase 1
      3. Case Studies
      4. What they say about the Innovation and Transformation Fund
    9. Knowledge Resources
      1. Mergers in Higher Education
        1. HE/FE Mergers - Literature
        2. Merger Evaluation Reports
        3. Higher Education Case Studies
        4. Legislation/Guidance
        5. News Articles
        6. Non HE Literature on Mergers
      2. Shared Services
        1. The Shared Services Approach
        2. Shared Services in the Public Sector and Higher Education
        3. The Transition to a Shared Services Model
        4. Bibliography
        5. The Shared Services Model
        6. Shared Services in the Public Sector
        7. Shared Services in Higher and Further Education
        8. Additional Leadership, Governance and Management Considerations in Shared Services Models
        9. UK Policy and Guidance Papers
        10. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland Resources
        11. Websites and Online Materials
    10. Post Event Resources
      1. Conferences and Events
        1. Innovation and Transformation in HE Unlocking Learning
        2. Internationalisation
        3. Research Leadership
        4. Future Proofing Higher Education
        5. Developing higher education: strategies for a new era
        6. Online and open-access learning in higher education: MOOCs, new pedagogies and business models
        7. Imagine
        8. MOOCs: What have we learned, emerging themes and what next
      2. Governor Development Programme Resources
      3. Developing Academic Leaders
    11. Changing the Learning Landscape
      1. Impact
        1. Patsy's Perspective:
      2. Partners
  5. Governance
    1. Governors
      1. Becoming a governor
      2. What is governance?
      3. Governor responsibilities
        1. Academic governance and quality
        2. Compliance and regulation
        3. Commercial operations
        4. International students and developments
        5. Risk management
        6. Students
        7. Strategic plans
        8. Monitoring performance
    2. Governing bodies
      1. Audit Committee
      2. Nominations committee
      3. Remuneration
      4. Employment
      5. Finance
      6. Estates
    3. Operating context
    4. Resource bank
      1. Features
      2. Previous news alerts
        1. Five issues for HEI governing bodies
        2. Whistleblowing and gagging clauses
        3. The failure of HBOS
        4. Financial forecasts for English HEIs
        5. Governance changes proposed in the HE Green paper
        6. Board diversity - the Davis Review
        7. Information systems and cyber security
        8. NAO investigation: Kids company
        9. Does a change in leadership lead to a change in strategy?
        10. FIFA and corporate governance
        11. Volkswagen
        12. Kids company
        13. The need for good governance
        14. Sustainability
        15. Review of governance at Plymouth University
        16. Equality and diversity and governing bodies
        17. A Changing Agenda
        18. Revised HE Code of Governance
        19. Role and effectiveness of audit committees
        20. Governance of Scottish Higher Education Institutions: Consulative Paper on HE Bill
        21. Governance issues at Tesco
        22. Update to UK Corporate Governance Code
        23. Student visas
        24. Governance at the Co-op
        25. HE funding - IFS report
        26. HE Code of Governance
        27. Removal of student number control
        28. Governance issues in the private sector
        29. Governance at the BBC
        30. Reforms to how higher education in England is regulated
        31. HBOS & London Met: case studies in governance
        32. New IPPR report on HE
        33. Moocs are coming
        34. Increasing diversity
      3. Getting-to-grips
        1. Getting to Grips with Finance
      4. Useful websites
      5. Codes of governance
      6. New research on governance in higher education
      7. Book reviews
      8. HE facts
    5. Governance Briefing Notes
    6. Governor Dialogues
  6. International
    1. International Associates
    2. Anglo-Swedish-Scottish Higher Education Policy Seminar
    3. Kazakhstan Networking Dinners 2014
    4. Umeå University, Sweden - Study Visit
    5. UKIERI project
Welcome...

We are a membership organisation of and for a sector that has some of the brightest minds in the UK.

 

Our members are key to our strategy and form a community of higher education institutions with a clear commitment to and experience of developing leadership, governance and management capabilities at all levels. Academic and professional services staff from member institutions contribute to our programmes, projects and research and advise on benefits and services.

 

Find out more about Membership

 

  • Membership benefits

    • 25% discount on our open and in-house programmes and consultancy
    • a free consultancy day
    • exclusive access to research publications, development resources and funding opportunities
    • free regional events
    • funding for Staff Development Forum and MASHEIN activity
    • members’ mailing lists, newsletters and magazine
    • participation in our development networks

    More…

  • How to join

    • Membership is open to all higher education providers and related sector organisations on an annual or three-yearly subscription basis.
    • We have 154 members with around a third taking advantage of the 10% discount offered by three-year subscriptions.

    More…

  • Membership benefits

    • Research and innovation: Access to our latest, highly-valued research, Leadership Insights, Getting to Grips series and practical development project resources.
    • More…

    • Management Development Resources: Flexible workshop materials on key leadership and management development topics, for you to deliver in-house to suit your own contexts NEW: ‘Caught in the Middle’. 
    • More…

    • The Knowledge Bank: Save time with these extensive multi-media training resources for HR, staff development and OD professionals, covering key leadership and management theory and practice.
    • More…

  • Get in touch

    Meet the membership team, your national and regional contacts in the UK and Ireland, and LF networks.

Pages in this section

You are:

Text size: A A A Print page:

Leadership Foundation for Higher Education
Peer House, 8-14 Verulam Street
London WC1X 8LZ

T: 020 3468 4810     F: 020 3468 4811

Use of Cookies

This website uses cookies. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.  Find out more here.

close