Marketing Director - Profile Manufacturer


Collingwood was asked to recruit a new Marketing Director for an existing client with whom it had built a successful partnership. A global, €1billion turnover, family owned window & door profile manufacturer within the UK, this company is the genuine market leader and viewed as a pioneering innovator. It is are also known for huge investment into the UK manufacturing site and high staff retention rates.


The existing Sales & Marketing Director was leaving the business after 20 years in the role.  Consequently, the MD took the opportunity of introducing a change of strategy and split the role  in two  – Sales  Director and Marketing Director.

For many years the manufacturer had a thriving commercial / trade market arm, however, the residential division had been neglected.  The company was, therefore, looking for someone with a rounded B2B and B2C experience.

Responsibility was to be placed on driving strategy for the domestic market, whilst developing a more collaborative marketing message for and with trade clients.  It was agreed that the two new executives would take dual ownership of strategy to grow the business 6% in FY 17/18.

As this was a new position, it was imperative that Collingwood brought in a Marketing Director with a strong presence who would inspire, mentor and coach the marketing team of 7.


Up to this stage, much of the existing marketing team’s activity had been reactionary rather than forward thinking, dynamic and strategic.

Therefore it was important to the MD that the person appointed would not only challenge what had been done historically, but also win the hearts and minds of fellow senior colleagues.  Many of the team had worked for the company for a number of years and so it was perceived that the change could meet with some resistance.

Collingwood's initial brief was to research companies from an allied industry.  This would include sizable building products and industrial manufacturing companies based regionally. 

It was also recognised that, as the company is not based close to a major city, the location could be a limiting factor in attracting candidates.


From research 31 target organisations were identified and from these only 25 had in-house Marketing Directors. After engaging with the 25, 6 candidates were interested in the position.  In addition to the headhunt a further 2 candidates came from an advert response. Collingwood’s Building Products consultant, Mark Goldsmith, felt that 6 candidates had the right skills and experience and set up face to face meetings with them to assess  the competency and behavioural skills  required in order to carry out the role effectively.


3 of the 6  candidates were recommended, with the client taking 1 individual through to a third and final interview.

Having provided feedback, and with assistance from the company’s external marketing consultant, all parties agreed to further refine the search.  Collingwood's brief had been to research allied industries, but it was thought the candidates were too B2B focused.  Mark, therefore, opened up the search to include candidates who had delivered strategy in both a B2B and B2C environment.

On completing the additional headhunt Mark interviewed 6 candidates and recommended 4.  The client took 3 of these to a second stage. The preferred candidate was taken back for a final third meeting with the board, and subsequently offered the role which was accepted.

As with the Sales Director position, (see Sales Director case study), both the client's HR Manager and MD worked in collaboration with Mark to reach this conclusion.  Management information reports and conference calls were exchanged weekly to keep both the search and expectations on track.