A decision to appoint the chief executive of taxpayer-funded Scottish Enterprise to an additional post paying £55,000 for 12 days' work has been criticised.
Lena Wilson, who already receives about £200,000 a year at the economic development agency, is taking a position on the board of Intertek, a FTSE-100 company.
The move was supported and welcomed by Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Government.
Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie called for an investigation in the decision, arguing that Ms Wilson should focus on her main job.
"I was under the impression that this Scottish Government was against high pay in the public sector, yet now they are celebrating it," he said.
"Many people would have to work three years to earn £55,000 yet Lena Wilson will earn that in 12 days.
"Does the chief executive of the government agency responsible for strengthening business and creating jobs not have enough to do that she has the time to take on extra work?
"There is a clear conflict of interest too with Intertek having received financial support from Scottish Enterprise in the past.
"We need an investigation into this decision to find out why John Swinney thought sanctioning this appointment was appropriate while Scottish businesses need all the support they can get."
A spokesman for Scottish Enterprise said it has clear policies to ensure no staff or board member is put in a position where there could be a conflict of interest.
Crawford Gillies, chairman of the agency, backed the decision.
"This is excellent news for Lena, for Scottish Enterprise and for Scotland," he said.
"While it is common place for CEOs to spend some time in non-executive positions, it is more unusual for leaders in the public sector to take up private sector positions.
"This sends a strong signal about the calibre of public sector leaders we have in Scotland and it shows that we're willing to look at innovative ways to allow our leaders to continue to develop their knowledge and capabilities while remaining in post.
"While Lena will take on this role in a personal capacity, I firmly believe that it will benefit her as CEO of Scottish Enterprise. It will build on the commercial awareness and expertise she already has and boost her credibility even further when dealing with business leaders in Scotland and across the world to support Scotland's economic growth."
A Scottish Government spokesman said: "This appointment is a strong indication from Intertek, a FTSE company, of Lena Wilson's talent and ability. This will add to Lena Wilson's considerable experience of working with successful businesses and enhance the work of Scottish Enterprise."
Ms Wilson takes up the non-executive position from July 1. Her contract requires around a day a month which she is expected to do in addition to her contracted hours at Scottish Enterprise, the agency said.