General Manager - Private Healthcare Services

Our client is a leading private Irish healthcare group. Their core business is the operation of a renowned private hospital in Ireland but they invested in a joint venture with an NHS Trust in England to provide “best in class” cancer care services.

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The Role

Reporting to a Group Director, the General Manager has full P&L responsibility for a cancer care centre located in an NHS hospital in Northern England. The centre had been established 3 years previously and the vacancy arose due to the original GM leaving to pursue her career in a different area of healthcare.

The centre was established and slowly building its reputation within its private oncology consultant network and growing its patient throughput. It had a strategic plan focused on growth and was investing in new technologies, therapies and additional clinical and nursing resource to treat and care for more patients.

With the GM leaving, our client decided to change the role slightly and sought to attract candidates with more commercial (marketing and business development) skills. The new specification still wanted a healthcare professional with a strong clinical background but ideally someone who had been responsible for developing and launching a new service within either the NHS or private healthcare.

The role was certainly a “risk” to NHS long servers and needed someone with an entrepreneurial spirit happy to stretch their comfort zone and embrace this new challenge which would provide significant empowerment and autonomy. 


The Solution

We had previously worked with this client before and so had a really good understanding of their culture, services and the environment and challenges of the cancer care centre. We worked collaboratively with our client to identify and recommend what was possible in terms of the candidate they needed to attract before designing a bespoke and proactive executive search process.

The process combined a proactive headhunting exercise focused on researching and engaging with candidates who had launched new services and had a commercial background. In addition to this, we designed a creative social media campaign to cast the net wide, online advertising in specific and relevant media and referring through our extensive healthcare network.

Through regular communications with our client to discuss candidate profiles we ended up with a strong longlist of 8 who we then took through a robust assessment process. 4 candidates were shortlisted for the client to meet, who were then taken through a two-stage interview and presentation process. 


The Result

We successfully appointed a new General Manager first time with little compromise against our agreed job specification.

About the author
Doug Mackay
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Having started his career in Executive Search in 1998, Doug set up Collingwood in 2005 alongside his wife, Claire Mackay.

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Doug Mcckay

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