A GUIDE TO EXECUTIVE SEARCH
What is executive search?
Executive search is a specialised type of recruitment aimed at attracting highly skilled senior management talent to an organisation. It is typically used to fill strategically important roles, including CEO, CFO, COO, HRD, and CIO.
Executive search differs from the recruitment of more junior talent. When recruiting for more junior roles, an organisation will usually work with a recruitment consultancy on a contingency basis to find suitable candidates. The candidate who is successful in securing the position will usually be an active job seeker who applies for the role.
While contingency recruitment works for filling many roles in an organisation, your senior leadership team needs to be made up of the best people - and the best people are rarely ‘looking for a job’. This is why executive search exists.
Executive search seeks out the perfect match for both the role and the company - whether the candidate is actively looking for a new position or not. An organisation will develop a long-term partnership with an executive search firm, who acts as an extension of their business identifying and engaging suitable candidates on their behalf.
How does executive search work?
Executive search involves working with a third party, typically an executive search firm, who can identify and engage the best senior executive talent in the market to match your business requirements.
Executive search is relationship-driven. An executive search firms will work closely with you to understand your requirements and advise on the most effective strategy to ensure they deliver the most suitable talent.
It is a research-led approach, meaning a search firm will be paid a retainer fee upfront to carry out extensive market mapping to analyse the marketplace and benchmark for skills/roles and salaries. A search firm will tend to have extensive knowledge of and access to board directors and senior executives across industries and functions, allowing them to build a large pool of top executive talent.