Executive search and recruitment – What’s the difference, you ask?

Executive search and recruitment

What’s the difference, you ask?

Killian Glendon - Pure JobSearch

By KILLIAN GLENDON

01.12.2019

“We believe that when the right talent meets the right opportunity in a company with the right philosophy, amazing transformation can happen.” Reid Hoffman, Co-Founder, Paypal & LinkedIn

Easy to confuse the two, right? We both give you time back into your busy schedules, we both take away the administrative burden of finding suitable profiles for the roles, we both aim to fill your open positions.

But there are fundamental differences between the executive search day-to-day and those of recruitment agencies.

Mapping and knowing the market

Over the years, the executive search expert has developed a complex market map, gaining an overview of where the top talent lies, where they want to be and how to get them there. The thorough process of putting together the ideal shortlist means they work on each and every mandate with only that client in mind – they find you your ideal candidate, no one else’s.

Recruiters don’t need such an in-depth knowledge of the market as candidates come to them.

Global vs local – it’s all in the mindset

Recruiters will most likely only throw their net as far as the local market. The nature of the executive search business – going right to the candidate – means they can truly think global, allowing them to work with multinational companies looking to hire senior individuals with international experience. Their market scan is global, bringing you the best talent from anywhere in the world.

Seniority and specialisms

Recruiters will work with candidates on more junior roles. The easier to find individuals that tick just enough boxes for the roles that have a much lesser importance in leading your business.

Executive search means just that – focus on executive, senior, highly qualified profiles, the specialist profiles that require that little bit more dedication to unearth, making sure you are able to build the leadership and expertise in-house that will ensure your business goes in exactly the direction you want it to.

Quality vs quantity

The hard-to-find candidates, the true technical experts and those with niche specialisms means headhunters work on a quality vs quantity basis, bringing only the top talent to the table, with a strategic and long-term view. Don’t forget that the calibre of your management can mean the difference between profit and loss.

Passive vs active

So perhaps the most important difference between executive search and simple recruitment is that executive search looks at passive candidates, proactively, those that don’t yet know they want to make a life-changing move, those that feel fully successful where they are. They go to them with specific, and often specialised, roles, acting as the bridge between the client and their ideal candidates.

Headhunters search and vet, based on your criteria, and will only present you with the top tier talent that they believe tick all the boxes. They aim to know your business, to be able to sell it, and they have the unique skills to convince these passive candidates to consider taking on new, exciting opportunities elsewhere, using non-traditional, personalised headhunting recruitment techniques.

A passive candidate is an interesting one – they tend to be the ones with the right work ethic, the right mindset. These individuals need to be sold the role and executive search means truly finding the perfect match for the role rather than picking the best of the bunch from those actively searching for a new opportunity, as recruitment agencies do.

Time efficient

Executive search discussions with candidates are thorough and detailed, on your behalf, so by the time they get to you, you can rest assured that each individual has the traits, characteristics and expertise you are looking for. Perhaps then your own interview is just a formality?

Recruiters haven’t done such a deep assessment before providing CVs to you. They’ll skim, make sure most of the boxes are ticked and press send. Your follow-up will then require more time and effort from your side. And that’s not why you look to outsource, is it?

Strategic partnership

Thriving on building long-term relationships with both clients and candidates, recruiting at such levels goes deeper than simply following a process. Executive search needs to understand the client’s company culture to find just the right fit. We look to be your partners, acquiring, developing and retaining the top talent presented to you, so you won’t need to go through the same process because the person you hired just didn’t quite fit.

From detailed scoping with the client and direct targeting and open discussions with identified candidates all the way through reference checking and facilitating the offer process by acting as a third-party mediator, executive search is with you, and the candidate, from start to finish, ensuring smooth transitions at each step.

Overall methodology

In short, the methodology used in executive search differs greatly from that of straight forward recruitment.

The executive search methodology is most relevant when the pool of suitable candidates is limited and when confidentiality is paramount. As you’ve seen from this piece, appropriate candidates are identified through a systematic, focused research process and then approached directly. Attention to detail is critical if a timely and successful placement is to be made.

 Remember that you can’t afford to take risks when dealing with positions that could fundamentally impact your bottom line. You need a specialised partner by your side, dedicated to working closely with you to deliver just the right fit, at the right time.

“We believe that when the right talent meets the right opportunity in a company with the right philosophy, amazing transformation can happen.” Reid Hoffman, Co-Founder, Paypal & LinkedIn

Easy to confuse the two, right? We both give you time back into your busy schedules, we both take away the administrative burden of finding suitable profiles for the roles, we both aim to fill your open positions.

But there are fundamental differences between the executive search day-to-day and those of recruitment agencies.

Mapping and knowing the market

Over the years, the executive search expert has developed a complex market map, gaining an overview of where the top talent lies, where they want to be and how to get them there. The thorough process of putting together the ideal shortlist means they work on each and every mandate with only that client in mind – they find you your ideal candidate, no one else’s.

Recruiters don’t need such an in-depth knowledge of the market as candidates come to them.

Global vs local – it’s all in the mindset

Recruiters will most likely only throw their net as far as the local market. The nature of the executive search business – going right to the candidate – means they can truly think global, allowing them to work with multinational companies looking to hire senior individuals with international experience. Their market scan is global, bringing you the best talent from anywhere in the world.

Seniority and specialisms

Recruiters will work with candidates on more junior roles. The easier to find individuals that tick just enough boxes for the roles that have a much lesser importance in leading your business.

Executive search means just that – focus on executive, senior, highly qualified profiles, the specialist profiles that require that little bit more dedication to unearth, making sure you are able to build the leadership and expertise in-house that will ensure your business goes in exactly the direction you want it to.

Quality vs quantity

The hard-to-find candidates, the true technical experts and those with niche specialisms means headhunters work on a quality vs quantity basis, bringing only the top talent to the table, with a strategic and long-term view. Don’t forget that the calibre of your management can mean the difference between profit and loss.

Passive vs active

So perhaps the most important difference between executive search and simple recruitment is that executive search looks at passive candidates, proactively, those that don’t yet know they want to make a life-changing move, those that feel fully successful where they are. They go to them with specific, and often specialised, roles, acting as the bridge between the client and their ideal candidates.

Headhunters search and vet, based on your criteria, and will only present you with the top tier talent that they believe tick all the boxes. They aim to know your business, to be able to sell it, and they have the unique skills to convince these passive candidates to consider taking on new, exciting opportunities elsewhere, using non-traditional, personalised headhunting recruitment techniques.

A passive candidate is an interesting one – they tend to be the ones with the right work ethic, the right mindset. These individuals need to be sold the role and executive search means truly finding the perfect match for the role rather than picking the best of the bunch from those actively searching for a new opportunity, as recruitment agencies do.

Time efficient

Executive search discussions with candidates are thorough and detailed, on your behalf, so by the time they get to you, you can rest assured that each individual has the traits, characteristics and expertise you are looking for. Perhaps then your own interview is just a formality?

Recruiters haven’t done such a deep assessment before providing CVs to you. They’ll skim, make sure most of the boxes are ticked and press send. Your follow-up will then require more time and effort from your side. And that’s not why you look to outsource, is it?

Strategic partnership

Thriving on building long-term relationships with both clients and candidates, recruiting at such levels goes deeper than simply following a process. Executive search needs to understand the client’s company culture to find just the right fit. We look to be your partners, acquiring, developing and retaining the top talent presented to you, so you won’t need to go through the same process because the person you hired just didn’t quite fit.

From detailed scoping with the client and direct targeting and open discussions with identified candidates all the way through reference checking and facilitating the offer process by acting as a third-party mediator, executive search is with you, and the candidate, from start to finish, ensuring smooth transitions at each step.

Overall methodology

In short, the methodology used in executive search differs greatly from that of straight forward recruitment.

The executive search methodology is most relevant when the pool of suitable candidates is limited and when confidentiality is paramount. As you’ve seen from this piece, appropriate candidates are identified through a systematic, focused research process and then approached directly. Attention to detail is critical if a timely and successful placement is to be made.

 Remember that you can’t afford to take risks when dealing with positions that could fundamentally impact your bottom line. You need a specialised partner by your side, dedicated to working closely with you to deliver just the right fit, at the right time.

Killian Glendon - Pure JobSearch

By KILLIAN GLENDON

01.12.2019

+ 352 621 698 225

killian@purejobsearch.com

65 boulevard de la Petrusse
Luxembourg
L-2320

+ 352 621 698 225

killian@purejobsearch.com

65 boulevard de la Petrusse
Luxembourg
L-2320