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What Successful Managers Look for in City and County Planning Services

Managers often find themselves in the position of looking for city and county planning services for a variety of reasons.


This can be for a short-term or longer period until a city or county is in the fiscal position to hire full-time employees.

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Contract planning services support planning agencies in California as to ensure residents current and future levels of service remain excellent.


Successful city or county managers have learned one vital key to hiring the right planning services company in California – position compatibility.


Position compatibility is a new term referring to a concept being introduced to planning and business administration students.


It means looking at an open position as short-term or longer term and its compatibility with the specific contract planner being considered going beyond a resume.


Sample case study of position compatibility in the planning environment.


A position is open for an associate planner on an indefinite basis. A planning firm only has what would be called an over-qualified senior planner available.


On paper it looks like a bad fit, but with position compatibility it can prove to be very beneficial for all involved.


The manager wants to ultimately fill the position from within or through interviews, the contract senior planner at their career stage is not looking for a permanent position or the higher pay of a senior planner.


They are more than happy to bring their experience to the position and have no desire to rise through the ranks and compete with permanent staff.


The position compatibility should be asked about by a manager and a firm should be able to know their professionals well enough beyond the resume to know where they will do their best for a client.


Also, as our workforce stays at the job longer than traditional retirement age it’s a great time for city and county agencies in need of contract planning services to utilize position compatibility.


As a land use planning student, I was able to ask a respected planning professional Gus Romo, the Romo Planning Group, about position compatibility in the workplace.


The term was new to him, as it is something very new, but he did shed some fantastic insight about what I was asking in general.


“You know, it really comes down to people. When a client needs day-to-day staffing, I like to make sure not only is the resume excellent, but the person being placed is compatible with the current environment they are going to. If a city manager tells me ahead of time a contract position could become permanent, I send a talented planning professional that is already interested in moving from contract planning to permanent position.”


They are not trying to make a part-time job into a full-time one by polluting a workplace with bad intentions. They are staying within their role being a productive asset as long as needed.”


That sounds like a good approach. Land Planning 411

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