There is an art to finding top-performing talent for C-Suite, executive and senior management roles in the finance sector. A vacant senior-level position needs to be filled quickly, while at the same time, organisations must assess and interview all candidates thoroughly to ensure a bad hiring choice is not made. This can prove very difficult.
When it comes to finance executive search, executive headhunters are skilled in searching for relevant talent that possesses the required set of skills, previous experience, qualifications and personality traits in a short amount of time.
So, why exactly are executive headhunters so important? How do they identify top-performing talent? And what advantages do organisations stand to benefit from?
The experts in executive search
Executive headhunters specialise in sourcing, assessing and interviewing top-performing candidates for C-Suite, senior-level and executive positions across a wide variety of industries and sectors such as finance, law and IT. They are partners with executive retained search firms, which work exclusively with their clients rather than on a ‘one-time basis’.
Executive search firms have in-house research teams and headhunters who work closely with organisations to understand crucial information such as their core needs, long-term goals, values and company culture. This information is crucial for executive headhunters to design a strategic approach to finding, assessing and presenting their clients with top-performing candidates that are relevant to the position and the organisation.
Exclusive ways of identifying top-performing talent
Unlike lower-level positions, an executive headhunter will not simply put out an ad on Seek and wait for applications to start rolling in. There are various techniques at their disposal to assist them in identifying executive talent.
These can include:
▪ Candidate personas
The leading executive search firms will have their own in-house research teams. Their researchers will conduct in-depth research to gather data and information on what the ideal candidate should look like according to a specific role or industry. These are called candidate personas.
These personas assist executive headhunters in knowing exactly what to look out for when sourcing talent. This can include what types of qualifications the candidate needs to have, what personality traits they should possess, what skill sets they require and what previous industry experience they should have.
▪ Developing rapport
An executive headhunter will fully understand just how important it is to develop long-lasting rapport with each candidate, especially when it comes to finance executive search. Through connecting and developing a relationship with each candidate, headhunters build strong rapport. In return, the candidate quickly gains trust and builds an interest in the vacant executive position.
Building rapport is still crucial if it turns out that the candidate is not the best match for the position or is just simply not interested. The already established relationship means that the executive headhunter can reach out to them in the future when another executive position becomes available.
▪ An existing talent pool
Through developing rapport, executive headhunters will have exclusive access to an already existing talent pool of previous candidates they know and trust. This is also why headhunters can reach out to potential top-performing candidates in a short amount of time.
These candidates will always have an existing relationship with the headhunter. This means that the candidate is more willing to speak with the headhunter over someone else if approached. They are also more likely to be persuaded to apply for an executive position, even if they aren’t actively searching for work or even living in the same country.
The right cultural fit
Using candidate personas, executive headhunters will assess candidates based on factors such as their previous experience, skillsets, and qualifications. Another factor that is just as important as their personality traits. Leadership and C-Suite roles require certain traits such as empathy, assertiveness, determination and not being afraid of confrontation.
Headhunters will make sure they are presenting their clients with candidates that are the right fit for the role and don’t possess any negative traits such as a lack of empathy, narcissism, or poor communication skills.
Executive talent that stays for the long-term
Executive headhunters will understand what their client’s overall vision is and what they are trying to achieve for the long-term. They then use this knowledge to ensure that each presented candidate shares the same vision and long-term goals as the organisation. This results in a candidate being committed to the company, rather than leaving as soon as another opportunity presents itself.
Time and cost-effective
It can be a time-consuming and expensive process when an organisation handles its own hiring process in-house. And in the event that a bad hiring choice is made, a large amount of their time, resources, and budget will have been wasted. This will also negatively affect staff and other team members due to bad or inefficient leadership.
By working with a retained search firm that specialises in finance executive search, their headhunters will rigorously assess each candidate to eliminate the risk of a bad hiring choice being made. And due to their exclusive networks and talent pools, this results in time and money being saved.