Aberdeen City Council has failed to fill a highly-paid new role – despite claims it had attracted many “outstanding” applicants.
Council chiefs created the job of deputy chief executive, on a salary of £127,391 per year, in September.
It was controversial as it replaces the post of director of corporate governance – but pays about £13,000 more.
Council finance convener Willie Young said at the end of September that the authority had received more than 25 applications from “across the country” and that “the calibre of the candidates appears to be outstanding”.
But it has now emerged that nobody has been hired.
A councilspokeswoman said that none of the candidates had come up to standards and confirmed that senior staff member Richard Ellis would stay on in the interim.
She said: “The appointment panel has taken the decision not to proceed with the permanent recruitment of a new Depute Chief Executive/Director of Corporate Governance.
“Aberdeen is undergoing the biggest period of transformation in the city’s history and it is vital that those driving that are the right fit for the organisation as we continue to deliver on behalf of those we serve.
“On this occasion we have not been able to satisfy our rigorous and demanding recruitment criteria. Richard Ellis, who has played a valuable role during his time with Aberdeen City Council, will continue in the post on an interim basis.”
Opposition SNP leader Stephen Flynn, who sits on the appointment panel, said: “It’s clear the administration attempted to chuck money at the problem but it hasn’t worked.
“Despite assurances from councillor Young, the candidates were not to the standards that the city deserves.”
Mr Young added: “Aberdeen deserves the best, we had four very good candidates but they didn’t meet the standards.”