What are the 20 questions you should ask a potential new Executive Search partner to ensure they are right for your business?
20 questions to help you evaluate a potential new Executive Search partner's capabilities, expertise, and alignment with your organisation's needs.
Interviewing new executive search partners is a crucial step in finding the right firm to recruit a Board or Senior Level role for your company. Here are 20 questions to help you evaluate their capabilities, expertise, and alignment with your organisation's needs:
- Experience and Track Record: Can you provide examples of successful appointments you have made for similar roles?
- Search Process: Can you outline your typical executive search process for recruiting a senior role? How do you source potential candidates, and what is your approach to passive candidate recruitment?
- Understanding Your Company: How do you ensure a deep understanding of our company culture, values, and strategic goals? What steps will you take to comprehend the specific requirements and challenges of our industry?
- Candidate Assessment: How do you assess candidates beyond their CV's? What criteria do you consider? Can you provide examples of how you evaluate cultural fit between candidates and organisations?
- Market Knowledge: What is your assessment of the current talent market for senior level roles in our industry and region? What do you believe will be the biggest obstacles to a successful appointment?
- Search Timeline: What is the estimated timeline for completing the search process and presenting a candidate shortlist? How do you manage unexpected delays or challenges that may arise during the search?
- Client References: Can you provide references from clients who have recently hired similar roles through your firm? What were the challenges faced in those searches, and how were they overcome?
- Communication and Reporting: How often will you provide updates on the search progress, and what form will those updates take? What level of transparency can we expect throughout the process?
- Fee Structure: What is your fee structure, and are there any additional costs we should be aware of?
- Guarantee and Replacement Policy: Do you offer any guarantees or replacement policies if the recruited executive does not work out within a certain period? How do you handle situations where the candidate leaves shortly after appointment?
- Diversity and Inclusion: How do you ensure diversity and inclusion in your candidate pool? Can you share examples of how you've successfully promoted diversity in senior level searches?
- Global Reach: If applicable, how do you handle international searches, and do you have a global network? Can you provide examples of cross-border appointments you have successfully completed?
- Technology and Tools: What tools and technologies do you use to identify and assess candidates? How do you leverage data and analytics in the executive search process?
- Confidentiality: How do you ensure the confidentiality of the search process, especially in sensitive senior level searches? Can you provide examples of how you've handled confidential searches in the past?
- References from Candidates: Do you obtain feedback from candidates regarding their experience with your firm? How do you ensure a positive candidate experience throughout the recruitment process?
- Post-Placement Support: What level of support do you provide after the successful placement of an executive? How do you assist with onboarding and integration?
- Success Metrics: How do you measure the success of an executive search beyond the appointment itself? Can you share examples of long-term success stories from the appointments you have made?
- Challenges in the Search: How do you handle challenges such as candidate withdrawals or counteroffers from their current employers? Can you provide examples of how you've navigated difficult situations in previous searches?
- Adaptability: How do you adapt your approach to the unique needs and nuances of our organisation? Can you share instances where you've customised your process for a specific client?
- Questions for Us: What questions do you have for us to better understand our expectations and requirements? How can we ensure a collaborative and effective partnership throughout the search process?
These questions should provide a comprehensive understanding of an executive search firm's capabilities, approach, and compatibility with your company's needs to recruit senior level roles.