Executive Search vs Contingency Recruitment

20th July 2021

Why should I pay some of the fee up front and only work with one consultancy?’

Before we answer that question, let’s look at the process of contingent recruitment.

Contingent recruitment consultancies tend to be engaged later in the process, often too late in fact, once roles have been signed off and recruitment finally moves temporarily to the top of the priority list. The brief can be delivered with time pressure and ‘urgent’ as a sign off. What this means is that this very transactional process now becomes a race. Even if you are only using one agency, the expectation of a quick turnaround results in a less than thorough process.

The other downside to reducing the time available to recruit is that you are limiting the pool of candidates your options are sourced from. Time does not allow for interaction with potential passive candidates, thus leaving you with whoever happens to be looking now. If a candidate is actively searching for their next role, it is likely they have other options, so not only do you have a reduced pool of candidates to choose from, but you are also going to be in competition even if they happen to be a good fit.

Contingent recruitment where no exclusivity exists will lead to multiple candidate representation from different agencies. This brings surface level engagement due to the need for a quicker turnaround than the competition. Less time is taken to fully understand the role, accountabilities and business culture.

So what are the benefits of engaging a search consultancy:

Wider market access

With a true ‘talent partner’ engaged for the benefit of your business, you know that the commitment level is high. You are working on a timeline that allows earlier contact with a wider network, thus ensuring passive candidates are brought into the mix. You get to have conversations with the very best performers in the role you are sourcing, as well as receiving detailed market intelligence.

Engaged and informed candidates

Shortlisted candidates presented are informed about the business, engaged in the process and have successfully come through comprehensive discussions about their backstory. Our own focus on constant communication means we have often been speaking to candidates as part of our wider network for many years. Our role is not to only speak to people when we have a new opportunity for them, it is to maintain regular contact where we both inform them of industry changes, as well as being aware of how their own career is progressing.

A true ‘talent partner’

The retained search model brings earlier engagement in the process, which if embraced fully, results in us becoming part of talent strategy planning. This also ensures that our client’s mission, vision, culture, environment, employee journeys and objectives are all part of the conversation. Executive Search means commitment to a deep engagement for all parties, throughout the process. You are not just ‘filling a vacancy’ in your business. You are researching the market fully, accessing the very best talent, following a robust process, as well as receiving expert advice and support throughout the process.

Finding the right people to work within your business, requires finding the right partner to work alongside your business; someone you trust who has your best interests at heart.

William Finden, Managing Director, Oaklands Global


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