Executive recruitment firms are part of a multi-billion dollar industry that has been growing in net worth and global reach over the past decade.
Executive recruitment firms are part of a multi-billion dollar industry that has been growing in net worth and global reach over the past decade. According to Forbes, US corporations spend more than $70 billion a year on specialized recruitment services. In mid-market and large corporations, the use of executive recruitment services is widespread, since these can help employers find the right candidate and fill high-level positions with minimal risk. What follows is an overview of the services offered by executive search firms and a list of reputable recruitment partners.
Executive recruitment consultants can bring to the table in-depth knowledge of a specific industry sector, and in many cases they have direct access to key players thanks to their extensive network of contacts. Through a variety of services, these firms can assist their clients in the complex process of recruiting the right talent.
The executive recruitment begins with the research process, where consultants examine their client's needs and operational style and explore the organizational culture of the firm. The objective is to gain a clear understanding of the specific skills and personal characteristics that the right candidate should possess to guarantee an optimal fit. Many recruitment firms will create an executive profile after research into their client's organization is complete. This document is used to inform the remaining stages of the recruitment process.
Executive recruitment consultants will then come up with a number of candidates and take part in the initial screening process, which will eventually help them create a shortlist that is later passed on to their client. Some recruiters may refer to this process as candidate search and development services.
The role of an executive recruitment firm does not end here, as many staffing firms offer their clients support services throughout the negotiation process with the chosen candidate. Executive recruitment consultants may offer additional services, which can include interviewing candidates, performing reference checks and confirming the validity of the candidate's qualifications, etc.
In the United States, industry standards for the executive recruitment sector have been defined by the Association of Executive Search and Leadership Consultants. This organization has been in place since 1959, and currently has more than 350 members in the United States and beyond. Below is a selection of the top executive search firms that currently assist US companies with their management recruitment needs.