Kaggle rankings or scientific publications are not crucial for analytics leadership. Effective and innovative application of mathematical, statistical and numerical methods to solve real problems at scale is the key leadership skill and not algorithmic sophistication. Most of the time simple crosstabs make millions.
Don’t define the job by the platforms or systems. It’s all about problem-solving and everything else is just the means to an end.
Pedigrees don’t matter. Experience solving problems like yours is important, yet it’s not industry- or function-constrained. Analytics skills are transferable across industry and function. They mold easily.
Don’t leave the job of specifying your needs and success criteria to the candidates. These are specific to your company and your vision. You will position the future hire for success by engaging with them early on and listening to their high-level ideas of how they can deliver on your vision.
Don’t hire for the needs and problems of now. Analytics is a marathon; look for someone who can grow the organization along the maturity curve.