Succession Nomination Survey Template

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Succession Candidate Nomination Tool

The Succession Nomination Survey Template is a simple tool that can be used to identify which candidates to consider for succession into the critical roles you identified in Stage 1 of the succession planning process. Think of this step as taking an inventory of your available talent. We recommend completing the Succession Nomination Survey Template for all staff relevant to the critical role you are planning for, not only the top succession candidates. Consider looking for succession candidates beyond your functional area to other teams and departments to see if employees in a different area might be good succession nominees.

Nomination Survey

Using SIGMA’s Nomination Survey Template to Identify High-Potential Successors

The nomination survey helps keep the talent identification process fairly simple. It asks respondents to rate how confident they are that the potential successor can perform the role, and how soon the succession candidate will be ready to move into the role. It also leaves room for respondents to add any thoughts or comments that might assist with the evaluation of successors.

The successor nomination survey can be completed by:

  • a succession candidate’s supervisor, who is often the incumbent currently in the role
  • several senior managers who have the necessary perspective to provide meaningful ratings
  • leaders, peers, and direct reports who can round out a 360-degree rating

How to Use the Succession Nomination Survey Template

The Succession Nomination Survey asks you to indicate the name of the candidate and the role they are being considered for. Then, rate each succession candidate on two criteria:

1. Indicate the Name and Position of the Candidate

The Succession Nomination questionnaire asks you to indicate the name of the candidate and the role they are being considered for. Again, we recommend doing this exercise for all relevant candidates, not only the top succession candidates.

2. Rate Your Confidence in Succession Candidate’s Ability to Perform

Evaluate how confident you are that the succession candidate would be able to successfully perform the role they are being considered for Ratings will range from not at all confident to very confident.

3. Rate the Succession Candidate’s Readiness for the Role

Based on your knowledge of the succession candidate, rate how long you think it will be until they are ready to move into the role. Ratings will range from “ready now” to “never ready.”

How Many Succession Candidates Should be Evaluated?

While it is tempting to complete the Nomination Survey for only the top performing candidates, we recommend evaluating all staff relevant to the role you are planning for. The insights of the team members closest to the candidates may reveal someone that the succession team would not otherwise have uncovered.

Assessing Talent with the Succession Candidate Nomination Survey

Once your succession planning team has received all the Nomination Surveys for all potential successors for a particular role, you can compile the results to get a picture of the individuals who could be named in your succession plan to eventually move into that role. Your succession team should then discuss and validate the results, and make the final decision about how prepared the succession candidate is for the role, as well as the team’s confidence in their potential.

The final results of the leadership identification process will help the succession team develop your Succession Bench—list of successors and their relative readiness to take on a role. We’ll take a look at how to build and maintain your succession bench in our next succession planning article.

Gather Input From Multiple Sources

When completing the Succession Nomination Survey, it is important to gather information from multiple sources, including the current incumbent in the role, senior management and succession advisory teams, as well as leaders, peers, and direct reports of the candidate. You can record any relevant information in the comment box to add context to your evaluation. Once you have completed a Nomination Survey for all potential succession candidates, you can compile the results and discuss the ratings with your succession team. There should be general agreement amongst the team on each candidate’s potential and readiness. This discussion will help you with the next stage of succession planning, building your Succession Bench.

Need Help Getting Started?

SIGMA’s Succession Planning Launch offers a simple and cost-effective way to build a robust Succession Planning process and ensure your organization’s leadership is positioned for success and prepared for the unknown.

Contact us to learn how we deliver a detailed 12-month succession plan for each member of your leadership team in just two half-day workshops.


Talk to an Expert

Glen Harrison is an organizational transformation consultant and succession planning expert. Over the course of his career, Glen has worked with one-third of the Fortune 500 list and with every level of government in Canada and the United States. Having worked with numerous clients to build robust succession plans from the ground up, Glen has extensive experience in the application of SIGMA’s products and services to help organizations realize their people potential. If you are interested in learning more about SIGMA’s succession planning services, send Glen an email or give him a call. He’d be pleased to chat with you.