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About the Assignment

The Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) is requesting proposals from prospective executive search firms to carry out the search for its next Executive Director. The executive search firm shall assist HOT in attracting, interviewing, and hiring an Executive Director.

About HOT

HOT sits at the nexus of participatory mapping, community-led development, humanitarian response, open data and tech. With a talented and diverse team of about 100 staff spread around the globe, HOT is an NGO which supports a dynamic global community of thousands of dedicated volunteers using maps and open data for humanitarian response and advancing the Sustainable Development Goals. Working with humanitarian and development partners like the Red Cross, Médecins Sans Frontières, UN agencies, governments and many others, the HOT community maps in solidarity with those affected by or at risk of disaster and humanitarian crises.

In 2020, the work of the HOT community was recognized by TED’s Audacious Project, a collaborative philanthropic initiative that serves as a springboard for social impact on a grand scale, leading to an exciting new phase of growth. HOT is expanding its activities with a very dedicated focus on local-led initiatives, including scaling up its support to local mapping communities, through opening four regional Open Mapping Hubs around the world, and finding talent that represents the communities with which we work.

Overview of Work

The Executive Search Firm will:

  • Be a trusted advisor to HOT in the search for our next Executive Director
  • Invest in robust interactive discussions with the board, leadership, membership, and staff to gain full understanding of HOT and the Executive Director role including key required competencies, mandate and expected deliverables of the role, ideal background, etc.
  • Collaboratively develop a Job Description with input from board, leadership, membership, and staff that is aligned with the sectoral and organizational need and the values and philosophy of HOT
  • Prepare a well-articulated, attractive market-facing Candidate Profile / Package aligned to the information and messaging gained from discussions with the HOT team
  • Develop and execute a robust research and search strategy, tailored to the mandate that will incorporate a heavy component of direct sourcing and referral/ nomination follow up, and will have a strong lens on diversity and inclusion to ensure representation of the communities we work with
  • Carry out appropriate due diligence and screening process of prospective candidates to develop the longlist
  • Develop an interview guideline or recommended interview questions and prepare the selection panel for the interview process
  • Facilitate communications and coordination with the candidates
  • Ensure thorough reference checking of the final candidate or candidates
  • Ensure timely follow up communication to candidates not selected

Minimum Qualifications of Search Firm

  • Demonstrated experience in candidate sourcing and executive search for Executive Director or leadership positions
  • Successful experience in recruiting for small to mid-size non-profit organizations
  • Successful experience in recruiting for international organizations

Please send a proposal that includes the following:

  • Company background, including what your executive search methodology and processes include, and why are you the right firm to help us carry out this search
  • How you plan to deliver this work within our recommended time frames and requirements, considering 1 April 2023 target hire date of of the Executive Director
  • List the team member(s) who would work directly in the search and their experience
  • List of previous similar searches you have conducted with comparator organizations and references, if available
  • Cost and timeline of expected payment
  • Any additional information or comments that you believe would distinguish your company from others, or that would be relevant for us to know as we consider your response

Please send your proposal to with the subject line “RFP: ED Recruitment - <your company’s name>” by 7 Nov 2022.

Evaluation Criteria

  • Company’s demonstrated success in executive search for Executive Director or leadership positions in similar international organizations; successful search experience of working with tech and data-focused organizations is an advantage
  • The demonstrated success and capacity of the assigned team members in carrying out similar searches
  • Robust research and search methodology
  • Structured processes / work plan including engagement of HOT at different stages of the process
  • Proposed cost or pricing

Who will you be working with on our team?

  • Kate Chapman - President of Board of Directors, lead of the ED Search Committee
  • Liz Chamberlain - Staff representative, co-lead of the ED Search Committee
  • Board of Directors - Panelists for the interview process, part of the ED Search Committee
  • Other identified ED Search Committee members - likely 2-3 directors of the organization

Contract Timeline

  • RfP Posted: 24 October 2022
  • Accepting applications until: 7 November 2022
  • After review of proposals: we expect to host interviews with promising firms, with a view to confirming a vendor around 21 November 2022.
  • Target start date of the engagement: 1 December 2022
  • Target hire date of the Executive Director: 1 April 2023