Working with retained executive search consultants

Executive search consultants are also well known as “recruiters” or “headhunters” are playing an important role for organizations in filling up their specialized executive level positions to remain competitive. With the internal HR departments of the concerned organizations focused on lower ranks or hierarchy of the management, companies are turning to executive search consultants to provide them the needed expertise to fill upper management level positions. For the executives and other professionals, nurturing relationship with these executive search consultants or professionals forms an important part of their career management strategy.

Firms or organizations have now become more specialized with the lower level executive positions being filled up through aggressive social networking or social media and leaving the top executive positions to be filled up by the executive search consultants or industry. Companies with global business operations are facing the scarcity of the executive level talent to remain successful and competitive. Therefore, these companies have to rely on the expertise of executive search consultants for their top level staffing needs. Organizations usually retains an executive search firm to help them find a new senior level employee for instance, a CEO (Chief Executive Officer), CFO (Chief Financial Officer), VP(Vice President) etc. The typical salary for these positions handled by the retained search executive firms is at least in the order of $100,000 but more typically $250,000 and above.

The retainer in this case, implies a partnership between the hiring organization and the executive search firm. The concerned search firm brings their industry specific expertise and unique insight to the organization’s leadership needs. The firm if hired, then assesses the client organization and the role, review the organization’s internal bench strength (that includes the internal candidates for the role) and starts surveying the broader market in search of the best candidate for the job.

The executive search firms are projecting about 21% growth in their assignment levels in 2013 and have predicted the key industries where they can expect executive hiring. It is estimated that more than 50% of the companies are looking to upgrade their talent and may not be conducting open public searches but rather depend upon the executive search consultants or industry. According to executive search firms, industries where the most executive job growth is expected is in Healthcare/Hospitals/Clinics, Managed Care, High Technology Manufacturing, Pharmaceuticals, Biotech, Energy/Utilities etc. Thus, it can be said that retained executive search consultants have helped both the candidates and organizations in expanding their horizons for the former in terms of their career growth and for the latter in expanding their businesses.