Mastering the Art & Science of Executive Search

Expert Search Process

///Expert Search Process
Expert Search Process 2017-05-23T21:13:25+00:00

Expert Search Process

Since every client is different, every assignment is unique. What remains constant are the high standards we apply when conducting an assignment. We employ a systematic approach that is both comprehensive in scope involving an in-depth investigation of a wide field of well-qualified individuals – and swift. We recognize that most of our clients have urgent needs, and we aim to meet those needs quickly.

We employ a detailed “Lean-Sigma” approach to our search process that employs our own internal “Best Practices” not the least of which include transparent milestones and value stream mapping. We conduct all assignments as discreetly as possible, guaranteeing the confidentiality sought by clients and potential candidates alike.

Step 1:
Needs Assessment[Weeks 1-2]

Retained Search Step 1: Needs Analysis

Step 2:
Search Strategy[Weeks 2-3]

Retained Search Step 2: Search Strategy

Step 3:
Talent Sourcing[Weeks 3-5]

Retained Search Step 3: Talent Sourcing

Step 4:
Talent Screening[Weeks 4-6]

Retained Search Step 4: Talent Screening

Step 5:
Candidate Interviews[Weeks 7-8]

Retained Search Step 5: Candidate Interviews

Step 6:
Candidate Onboarding[Weeks 8+]

Retained Search Step 6: Candidate Onboarding

The first step in the search process is to begin creating a profile of the position as well as the personality and culture of the client. Data is compiled both verbally and in writing with the client and a written Search Assignment Profile is prepared. Through extensive research and interviews with the client we assess the style of the current leadership as well as invest time in clearly understanding the culture of the company. It is mutually understood exactly what the experience, skill sets and management style of the candidate needs to be for the role. This is all compiled into a completed Search Assignment Profile that must be signed off by the client as a written understanding of both the role and expectations for the specific search. The Search Assignment Profile is a critical instrument that is used as the guidelines to measure an individuals candidacy against.

During this phase of the process we determine the time lines and calendar the Search Process, create the Recruitment Target List of source candidates and companies, build a fundamental competency model, and begin conducting our Preliminary Research on the sources. It is critical to the process that we map out each step in the process and agree on timelines with the client to assure mutual understanding and expectations. We prepare a Target List of source companies for the Client to review and make any necessary adjustments too. Once the client signs off on the Final Target List of sources, we generate a specific list of individuals to contact. This list is compiled from various sources ranging from our proprietary data base to extensive networking inside of the source company to determine the qualified prospects.

During the Talent Sourcing phase we Identify Candidates, begin Preliminary Candidate Screening, and determine Potential Candidates Matched to the specific position and cultural profile. In most cases Talent Sourcing involves calling literally 100 or more qualified prospects and presenting the opportunity we are representing. During these calls our primary objective is to generate an interest by the individual to be amenable to confidentially explore the opportunity. Most people are always interested in bigger and better opportunities for themselves, so most people are at least willing to listen. If the prospective candidate volunteers themselves, we conduct a preliminary phone screen, collect a detailed resume and set up a follow up discussion. If the prospect is not interested for any reason, we have them recommend multiple qualified individuals that we can confidentially discuss this opportunity with and add those individuals to our prospect list.

During this step we conduct extensive Competency and Cultural Fit Interviews and begin making Preliminary Reference Checks on viable candidates. Once we determine a potential mutual interest we engage in a more in depth exchange of information. During this process we verbally share the details of the Search Assignment Profile with the candidate and discuss each and every line item with them to determine a mutual fit. If a mutual interest is maintained, we begin conducting Preliminary Reference Checks. We conduct these Preliminary Reference Checks with people we know can validate the candidate’s qualifications and can attest to their management style and stated accomplishments.

Through extensive final interviews, Short List Candidates are identified, candidates and clients are prepared for interviews, and we engage in comprehensive Post Interview Debriefings. We select the Short List by evaluating the entire candidate pool and prioritizing the candidates we have surfaced, qualified and interviewed. At this point we conduct an even more extensive final interview and prepare a Candidate Profile to present to the client along with the candidates resume and any additional information we feel may be of interest to the client. In the Candidate Profile that we prepare for the client, we discuss why the candidate is qualified and what specific experience and qualifications he/she has that pertains to the specification both in terms of technical qualifications and personality/cultural fit. We literally name every line item in the Search Assignment Profile and provide written specifics of why the candidate meets or exceeds that specification and expectation. Candidates that don’t make the Short List are professionally released.

Once the interview is arranged, extensive time and energy is invested preparing both the candidate and the client for their interview. We coach the client on why the candidate is interested in exploring the opportunity and the areas that are most important to them and encourage the client to participate in the recruiting process. Our search process generates exceptional candidates that often are not even considering changing jobs until we call them. As a result of our presentation, the candidates agree to confidentially explore this opportunity outside of their present concern. These candidates need to be sold on the opportunity with our client. We clearly communicate each candidate’s unique situation with the client. We also invest significant effort to make certain the candidate is well prepared for the meeting. We help the candidate with research and pertinent information on the client that they will need in order to make an informed decision and clearly communicate why the opportunity is a good match.

After the interview we debrief both parties by conducting Post Interview Debriefings. We ask both the candidate and the client questions the answers to which will aid them in making a decision on whether they want to extend and/or accept a job offer. Once all of the candidates have interviewed we can proceed to the final step, Candidate Onboarding.

Now that much of the hard work is completed and all of the candidates have been interviewed, it’s decision time. At the end of the day, the primary responsibility of any executive is to make a decision. With the client we benchmark the candidates and make a hiring decision.

Once a decision is made, an offer is negotiated and formulated between us and the client. The offer is extended and hopefully accepted. We release the remaining candidates in a courteous and professionally manner.

A start date is established and the deal is almost complete. We discuss the resignation process with the candidate, assist in the drafting of a resignation letter and discuss the realities of counter offers and everything else they will experience during the resignation process. We coach the candidate through the resignation, keeping the client apprised of each step along the way.

Finally, the candidate begins work and we ask the client where else in the organization can we be of service?