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Executive Search Services - Higher Education Positions
ClassificationContract TypeManagerPhone#
Goods & ServicesStateTermMichael S. Speakmon803.737.9816


NOTE: This is a companion contract to the Execute Search Services contracts awarded under solicitations 5400022558 and 5400023179.  This contract is restricted to academic higher education institution positions that are critical to the mission of the higher education institution. Higher education positions that are not academically related must use contracts awarded under the Executive Search Services solicitations 5400022558 or 5400023179.

Executive Search Services - Higher Education Positions
Start Date: 04/21/2023  |  End Date: 03/10/2027
Solicitation#: 5400025287

Before using this contract, all state agencies and institutions of higher education must submit a justification to DSHR. The justification shall include the position and the reason for electing the specific Contractor for this search.  DSHR must approve the use of this contract and the elected Contractor. Only after receiving authorization from DSHR may the state agency or institution of higher education issue a purchase order to a Contractor.  Political Subdivisions (i.e., cities, counties, and other local public procurement units) may use the contract at their own discretion.  If the UGU has multiple positions that must be filled, a separate request and justification must be made for each position.

Stacy Lanham, Department of Administration, Office of Human Resources 8301 Parklane Road, Suite A220, Columbia, SC 29223 (803) 896-9731

The Contractor(s) will support efforts by Public Institutions of Higher Education to find qualified candidates in a timely and efficient manner.  UGUs will choose from the awarded Contractor(s) to provide support for each search. 

  1. The Contractors shall be responsible for conducting searches within the State of South Carolina, and/or nationally, for qualified individuals to be employed by UGUs on an as needed basis.  
  1. The Contractors will be notified by the UGU of the need to conduct a search for open positions.  The UGU will provide the position description(s), minimal qualifications, and salary range(s) for open positions.  Currently there is not a defined list of positions and the total number of positions to be filled during the term of the contract is not known.
  1. The Contractor (s) may be requested to meet with the UGU and/or a search committee prior to initiating any search in order to understand specific needs of the UGU along with gaining insight into the agency or institution’s business culture to assist in selecting an appropriate candidate.
  1. The Contractor is responsible for all of the Contractor’s out of pocket expenses. The UGU may elect to pay or reimburse travel expenses for candidates during the interview process. Reimbursement for candidate’s travel expenses by the UGU will be in addition to the UGU’s payment to the Contractor of a percentage of the successful candidate’s first year’s base salary. All travel must be in accordance with the then current travel policies issued by the Office of the Comptroller General. This will be agreed upon by the UGU and the Contractor at the time of engagement.  The use of virtual environments for interviews and regular communication between the Contractor and UGU is strongly encouraged.
  1. Contractors will be paid a percentage of a candidate's first year base salary once the position is filled that will not exceed the awarded percentage for each awarded Contractor.
  1. The Contractor(s) shall recruit highly qualified, diverse, and distinguished candidates (particularly individuals who might not otherwise apply) utilizing the best practices of the search firm industry, seeking candidates from the Contractor’s known pool of prospective applicants and from suggestions made by the UGU.  This search should include a wide range of recruitment activities from the circulation of announcements in professional journals to extensive personal contacts with the prospective candidates.
  1. The Contractors shall only submit qualified candidate(s) with the background and necessary experience to carry out the duties and responsibilities set forth in the job descriptions provided by the UGU.

       8. The UGU, in its sole discretion, may post open positions and fill these positions without using the services of the Contractor.

       9. If the UGU employs a candidate for a position and the candidate was (a) earlier produced by the Contractor in a previous authorized search and (b) interviewed by the UGU during the previous search within the twelve (12) months immediately preceding the hire, then the UGU will negotiate a price with Contractor that must be lower than the awarded percentage of the annual salary offered to and accepted by the candidate.

     10. The Contractor will present a minimum of three viable candidates for each position.  Viable candidates are those who meet at least all the minimum requirements for the position as defined by the UGU and whom the UGU deems as acceptable candidates. The UGU will make the final determination whether to interview the Contractor’s candidates.

  1. The Contractor(s) shall, upon request, interact with the UGU, including providing reports which outline candidates identified for the position and how they were identified (i.e., via direct contact by the search firm, through nomination, or by self-application.) The Contractor will work with the UGU to develop a timeline or schedule for when this interaction shall occur.
  1. The Contractors (s) shall, upon request, finalize and assist the UGU in the process of interviews, including but not limited to
    1. Arranging time and place for interviews (perhaps virtual depending on preference of interviewee and making all travel arrangements for interviews). 
    2. Coordinating candidate's participation in interviews.
    3. Advising the UGU on best practices for interview and selection.
    4. Providing guidance on compensation and components of an offer based on market and industry research, if requested.

      13. The Contractor will submit an invoice for all work performed under this offering. If the UGU makes an offer of employment that is accepted by one of the candidates produced by the Contractor, the Contractor shall submit an invoice (upon or thereafter that candidate’s official start date) for the awarded Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary. Total Compensation will not exceed the awarded Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary.

     14. For positions which are required to be posted by South Carolina State Law and State Human Resources Regulations, the positions will be posted in accordance with the applicable state agency job posting procedures and individuals will be permitted to apply as they would for all other positions.  The Contractor may assist with the drafting of the required job posting.

  1. The Contractor(s) shall engage with UGU and the selected candidate during the onboarding process to assure successful transition.  If the UGU determines within the first 12 months of employment that the hired candidate is unsuitable or if the candidate resigns from the position for any reason during within the first 12 months, the Contractor agrees to repeat the steps with new candidates at no additional cost to the UGU.   SAP

Job Order Process
The following procedures must be completed prior to submitting the justification to DSHR. 

  1. Using the “Executive Search Services Job Order Request Form (JOR),” the UGU must interview at least two Contractors concerning their ability to satisfactorily fill the requested position.
  2. The UGU must complete all entries on the JOR and a separate JOR must be prepared for each Contractor interviewed. If a Contractor refuses to provide a response to the request, the UGU must make a request from another Contractor. A JOR indicating a Contractor refused to provide information, a “blank JOR,” will not be accepted by DSHR.
  3. Submit the JORs to DSHR for review.
  4. DSHR will approve the use of one of the Contractors or deny the request and send it back to the UGU with an explanation as to why the request was denied, and what the UGU must do to gain approval.

Contractor Requirements & Responsibilities

  • Contractor will respond to all JORs by a UGU and provide the information required on the JOR. If the Contractor refuses to respond to a JOR, they must provide the UGU sufficient justification for the lack of response. Repeated failure of a Contractor to respond to JORs without sufficient justification may be justification for contract termination.
  • Contractor will not begin work on any PO issued by a governmental body that does not include DSHR approval.
  • Once a Contractor receives a valid PO against the contract, they will begin conducting the search in accordance with the requirements of Section III of the contract.

 UGU’s Requirements & Responsibilities

  • UGU shall create and complete the entire Job Order process each time they have a need to solicit services pursuant to this Contract.
  • UGU’s must solicit information from at least two Contractors for each position to be filled prior to submitting the request to DSHR.
  • The JOR must contain a position description with sufficient detail so that the Contractor may accurately respond to the JOR. Generic position descriptions are not acceptable.
  • The UGU must provide objective information on the JOR and not try to skew the information towards one vendor over another. UGU’s may express a preference for one vendor over another.
Job Order & Job Order Request Forms
Vendor: ActOne Executive Search
Contract#: 4400031468
Vendor#: 7000335054
Address: 1999 W. 190th St., Torrance, CA 90504
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 25%
Contact: Katy Davis
Phone#: 303-446-7853
Email: katydavis@actonees.com
Vendor: AGB Search
Contract#: 400031463
Vendor#: 7000183417
Address: 1666 K Street NW, Suite 1200, Washington. D.C. 20006
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 28%
Contact: Roderick McDavis, Ph.D.
Phone#: 202-776-0856
Email: rod.mcdavis@agbsearch.com
Vendor: Centstone Services, LLC
Contract#: 4400031466
Vendor#: 7000332480
Address: 211 East 43rd Street, FL 7-100, New York, NY, 10017
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 28%
Contact: Adarsh Suvarnakanti
Phone#: 332-255-7171
Email: adarsh@centstone.com
Vendor: Colemen-Lew & Associates
Contract#: 4400031461
Vendor#: 7000313760
Address: 6101 Carnegie Boulevard, Suite 300, Charlotte, NC 28209
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 30%
Contact: Chris Shade
Phone#: 704-377-0362
Email: chade@clcbsearch.com
Vendor: Connect Staffing
Contract#: 4400031465
Vendor#: 7000311607
Address: 4464 Devine St., Ste 1241M, Columbia, SC 29205
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 30%
Contact: Kizzy Davis
Phone#: 803-667-5888
Email: connectstaffingagency@gmail.com
Vendor: Datrose, Inc.
Contract#: 4400031464
Vendor#: 7000287311
Address: 660 Basket Rd., Webster, NY 14580
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 28%
Contact: Cheryl Leader
Phone#: 585-217-0228
Email: staffing@datrose.com
Vendor: Parker Executive Search, LLC
Contract#: 4400031467
Vendor#: 7000334997
Address: 5 Concourse Parkway, Atlanta, GA 30328
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 30%
Contact: Laurie C. Wilder
Phone#: 770-804-1996, Ext. 102
Email: lwilder@parkersearch.com
Vendor: Recruiting Solutions
Contract#: 4400031462
Vendor#: 7000129827
Address: 1441 Main Street Suite 890, Columbia, SC 29201
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 25%
Contact: Ginger Thompson
Phone#: 864-516-6896
Email: gthompson@recruitingsolutionsonline.com
Vendor: Spirit Consulting
Contract#: 4400031469
Vendor#: 7000335228
Address: 1068 South Lewis Ave., Lombard, IL 60148
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 30%
Contact: Christopher Gomez
Phone#: 630-686-1414
Email: cgomez@spiritmco.com
Vendor: Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT)
Contract#: 4400033185
Vendor#: 7000024551
Address: 1101 17th St. NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20036
Contact: Julie Golder
Phone#: 202-384-5816
Email: jgolder@acct.org
Vendor: Embark Business Solutions, LLC.
Contract#: 4400033234
Vendor#: 7000274878
Address: 1225 Laurel St., Suite 207, Columbia, SC 29201
Contact: Leon Hunt
Phone#: 803-518-1875
Email: leon@embarckbs.com
Vendor: Excelon Associates, Inc.
Contract#: 4400033238
Vendor#: 7000343041
Address: 76 Glendale Avenue, Suite 301, Asheville, NC 28803
Contact: Joshua Forman
Phone#: 828-417-7094
Email: joshua@excelonassociates.com
Vendor: Jobsmart Staffing Agency, LLC
Contract#: 4400033237
Vendor#: 7000340835
Address: 3008 Barefoot Trail, Anderson, SC 29621
Contact: Bonita Davis
Phone#: 864-634-1507
Email: info@jobsmartagency.com
Vendor: Summit Search Solutions, Inc.
Contract#: 4400033235
Vendor#: 7000279484
Address: PO Box 9824. Asheville, NC 28815
Contact: Carrie Coward
Phone#: 828-669-3850
Email: ccoward@summitsearchsolutions.com
Vendor: SSG Medical, NA
Contract#: 4400033236
Vendor#: 7000322452
Address: 2248 Valley Oak Lane, Unit 1046, West Sacramento, CA, 95691
Total Percentage (%) First Year Salary - 30%
Contact: Andre Sanders
Phone#: 415-481-3300
Email: acsanders@sanderssearchgroup.com
Vendor: Helping Hands Human Resources, LLC
Contract#: 4400032499
Vendor#: 7000347471
Address: 1646 W HWY 160, Unit 612, Fort Mill, SC 29708
Contact: Evelyn Baskerville
Phone#: 839-293-9062
Email: evelyn@helpinghandshumanresources.com
Vendor: Appleone, Inc.
Contract#: 4400034298
Vendor#: 7000334528
Address: 327 W. Broadway, Glendale, CA 91204
Contact: Erin Vassilo
Phone#: 803-260-0579
Email: evassallo@appleone.com