Executive Recruitment Agencies – getting the most out of them
Recruiting an executive for an instrumental role is a business critical decision, one that makes it vitally important to select the right executive recruitment partner who can use their knowledge and expertise to locate candidates of the highest calibre.
Forward planning results in a more efficient and fruitful relationship, so before the recruitment process begins, things to consider may include:
Select the right executive recruitment agency for you.
When assessing a firm, establish whether they are experts who specialise in executive roles. Have they recently run similar assignments to yours? Do they have a substantial network of high quality candidates suitable for filling your role? Can they provide testimonials from organisations like yours, to give you confidence in their service?
Finalise the role profile.
Think beyond the short term and consider what you expect the successful candidate to achieve in the medium and longer term, what their aspirations will likely be and what career development opportunities your role will give them. What specific experience and skills do you need candidates to have in order to be shortlisted by the executive recruitment agency? Think about softer skills too, such as leadership and communication styles that would work well with your existing organisation.
Ensure the package offered is attractive enough to entice the most talented candidates.
A competitive salary is essential in reaching the right calibre of executives, especially those who may not be actively seeking new opportunities. Other important components to consider are benefits such as a performance related bonus, company car, pension and healthcare.
Carefully plan a date by which your vacancy must be filled and take into consideration how long the prospective individual’s notice period could be. Think about how many stages there will be in the selection process and who will be on the interview panel. Establish how long the executive recruitment agency will take to assemble the shortlist and who will be responsible for reviewing it. Also, plan when you will be in a position to give the recruiter the go-ahead.
Prepare information for prospective candidates.
It’s essential that time is taken to prepare a job description, person specification, departmental structure chart and company information to give to prospective candidates, to inform them of and attract them to your organisation and the role.
Using an executive recruitment agency
The executive recruitment agency you appoint will become your in-house recruiter for the duration of the assignment. They will enticingly promote your opportunity and organisation to prospective candidates, so the more information you can provide the recruiter with, the better. Key details you should provide include:
A thorough understanding of your business, its culture and its future plans.
This will help the recruiter focus on candidates whose experience and personalities will be a good fit for your organisation and who will contribute to its development, their own aspirations aligned with yours. Present the recruiter with a solid understanding of the developmental opportunities which will be open to the successful candidate as the role evolves and expands in future months and years.
A detailed overview of where the role sits, its reporting line and peer groups.
The recruiter will be more fluent in bringing your opportunity to life if they are able to meet the key people the successful candidate will be working with.
Overall selling points of your business.
Provide your recruitment consultant with strong reasons why a candidate should choose your organisation and opportunity over others.