I recently posted on LinkedIn about the extortionate costs a council had reportedly been charged for taking an ‘external support and search approach’ for recruiting a senior level post. To add insult to injury, in this particular instance an appointment wasn’t made, making the cost even harder to stomach. The reported fees really were mind blowing (£32K in fact!!) and further demonstrates how the sector has been tied into paying such high costs for taking such an approach to recruit its leaders.
Needless to say, recruiting the right person for a senior role is vital. The cost of failure is high though; appoint the wrong individual and the organisation or directorate can quickly veer off course – damaging productivity and focus. Correcting these errors can take years, and such leadership errors can be fatal to others’ careers and aspirations.
This is why targeted search is used, as it offers organisational leaders the assurance they need in selecting top staff. But is there another way? One where outdated head hunting methods and high fees are left behind?
The current recruitment processes can be “gamed” by determined individuals. Candidates will always want to show their best side. Obviously, we all have less than positive sides to our personalities and working practices. The challenge for recruiters is in identifying these downsides and determining the extent to which they may be potentially damaging to an organisation.
To date, recruiters have adopted a wide-net approach. Clients like to see numbers – it reassures them that their posts may be attractive to leading players. Numbers can also act as a proxy for the reputation or standing of the organisation itself; if people want to work here then we must be good at what we do.
But what matters is not getting high numbers, it’s getting the right people – individuals who meet and exceed the specification and who do not create future risk.
At Jobsgopublic, and through our SmartSearch executive resourcing solution, we spend time profiling the post and looking at the likely candidates. We don’t leave recruitment to chance, hoping that stand out adverts will catch the eye for example. There are only so many “bright lights, big cities” ads that work. We assume that our candidates are not scouring the job pages. We want to find the people who aren’t necessarily looking to be found, as well as finding the best that do.
So, we use a complex mix of profile-raising communications – putting the offer to a range of carefully selected potential candidates. We know where the senior high calibre candidates you need are, and we know what they are looking for from a new opportunity.
This approach to search, coupled with innovative and highly effective attraction and marketing of the vacancy, allows us to advise clients on not only the suitability of potential candidates but also the propensity for risk. No candidate comes without risk – the question is whether the degree of risk is tolerable, given the upsides of outstanding candidates.
When using SmartSearch, organisations have a higher degree of assurance around the recruitment of leading staff.
Successful recruitment isn’t just about appointing the right people. It’s also about avoiding costly appointments that might not only damage the organisation but damage everyone involved in the appointment.
If you’re interested in finding out more about SmartSearch and how we can help you with your senior and executive recruitment, please free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org click here for more information.