Course Summary:

For churches and faith-based organizations, hiring pastors and staff can be as challenging as hiring for positions in any business or industry. In order to hire the best possible candidates, a search committee capable of developing and implementing an effective hiring strategy and process is essential. This team of dedicated individuals collaborates to make staffing choices that will complement the church’s mission and culture.

Entrusted with many responsibilities, the hiring team creates job descriptions, reviews resumes, conducts interviews, extends job offers, and much more. Important to the church’s present and future, hiring is a thoughtful process that cannot be rushed—and committee members should undertake it with commitment, care, and the right tools to ensure the greatest possible outcome.

Time: Approximately 60 minutes

Learning Objectives:

  • Recognize the important role search, or hiring, committees play in selecting pastors and staff who will complement the church’s mission and culture
  • Know some of the qualities that characterize a successful, effective search committee
  • Define the responsibilities of hiring committee members
  • Establish hiring priorities for your church
  • Know strategies for funding new positions on a limited church budget
  • Identify challenges and conflicts search committees may encounter among members, and throughout the search and hiring process
  • Know the various steps involved in a church hiring process
  • Implement steps in the hiring process, including creating job descriptions, managing and evaluating applications, conducting interviews, and selecting final candidates
  • Understand employment discrimination as it applies to church hiring practices
  • Recognize mistakes church search committees can make during the hiring process
  • Discern the important intangible qualities to look for in a candidate

Key Topics Include:

Module 1: The Hiring Committee

  • The Hiring Committee Pages
  • The Importance of Making the Best Possible Pastoral and Staff Hires
  • The Hiring Committee
  • Ensuring Hiring Committee Success
  • Hiring Committee Responsibilities
  • Final Hiring Decisions
  • The First Hiring Step: Know Your Church
  • Why are You Hiring?
  • Who are You Hiring?
  • How Many People Should Your Church Have on Staff?
  • Funding New Positions on a Limited Budget
  • Bivocational Employees
  • The Perfect Senior Pastor, the Flawless Worship Leader, and Other Myths
  • Reasons Pastors and Staff Leave and Why This is Important
  • Hiring Committee Challenges and Conflicts
  • The Importance of Prayer

Module 2: The Hiring Process

  • Position Profiles and Job Descriptions
  • Candidate Requirements
  • Church Information
  • Communication: Responding to Applicants and Candidates
  • Determining Compensation
  • Discrimination and the Church Hiring Process
  • Possible Search Committee Mistakes
  • Recruiting
  • Hire from the Inside and the Outside
  • Evaluating Resumes
  • Past Ministry Experience and Other Evaluation Criteria
  • Beyond the Resume: The Significant Intangibles
  • The 4 C’s of Hiring
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • The Interview Process
  • Interviews and Red Flags
  • The Interview Questions
  • Candidates are Interviewing the Church, Too
  • Personality Profiles and Spiritual Gifts Assessments
  • The Church’s Responsibility for Due Diligence
  • How to Choose “The One”
  • Notifying Candidates
  • Hiring Tips