Recruitment 101: Things You Need To Know About Executive Search

shutterstock_123574294When it comes to hiring staff, a lot of people tend to think that recruitment can only be done one way: by posting advertisements on job boards or newspapers. This type of passive recruitment is better known as contingency staffing, and it is usually acceptable for entry-level or junior positions (or intermediate level jobs, in some cases). However, contingency staffing is not adequate if you are looking to fill in higher-ranking positions, such as those for senior managers and executives. This is because these individuals are usually not exposed to such advertisements; a person with an impressive set of credentials is most likely to be happily employed already and thus unlikely to apply for other jobs. In this case, companies can only hire them through executive search.

Executive or retained search, which is also known as headhunting, is a type of recruitment method that involves directly approaching suitable candidates with the company’s offer. This is a particularly good method to attract senior candidates, and it is usually done in a discreet manner. There are many advantages to working with executive search firms, the most important of which is the fast turnaround.

With contingency staffing, a company will have to write an advertisement, post this in the appropriate job boards, and then wait for applicants to submit their resumes. This initial process takes time, but the waiting does not end there. Once resumes are submitted, recruiters will have to sort through them, find suitable candidates and then schedule interviews. More often than not, a majority of applicants to such postings may not be suitable for the job, particularly when the opening is for a high-ranking position. As such, this makes contingency staffing a truly inefficient and time-consuming process for hiring senior managers or executives.

With executive search, on the other hand, recruiters can just source from their pool of talents for people who are suitable for the position. This effectively reduces the amount of time spent on searching for candidates and companies can proceed with negotiations quickly.

Another benefit that comes with executive search is getting a guarantee of quality. Unlike contingency staffing, most executive recruiters already possess verified information regarding their recommended candidates, and this eliminates the need to do further research. Executive recruiters keep tabs not only on the talents already in their roster, but also individuals who show promise as leaders in the industry. This way, companies can be sure that they will get high-quality hires, whether they appoint an experienced executive or one who is new to the job.


kylie hammond

About Kylie Hammond
Executive Search Consultant, Head-Hunter, HR Consultant, Executive Career Coach, Expert Resume Writer & Executive Talent Agent.

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