Before I detail the Executive Search services we offer, I thought it would be an idea to define what Search entails, as many people find it somewhat opaque!
What is Executive Search?
Executive Search (informally called ‘headhunting’) is recruitment in reverse. Most recruitment is driven by candidates looking for work. Search turns this process on its head, it is a discrete, confidential process involving specialist, niche experts identifying exceptional, senior-level individuals for a client, then persuading those individuals to consider a career move.
The process relies on total discretion and requires a minutely controlled process to ensure the identities of parties remains confidential until they are willing for it to be revealed. Whilst unusual, there are occasions where the client and candidate remain unaware of the other’s identity even when they meet.
Simply, because the most talented individuals in any given industry are unlikely to spend their time scouring jobs boards, they are too busy being successful. What we do is track down and speak with the very best individuals, the kind you would never get to see through an agency, a newspaper advertisement, or a job board.
How does it work?
Search assignments must be exclusive, meaning we are the only source internally or externally instructed to complete the assignment. Our clients occasionally ask us to discretely approach a named individual. But more usually we are asked to identify a small number of key senior individuals working for competitors or related organisations. We research the market and present a shortlist of suitable individuals to our client. We then refine the list accordingly. Once the shortlist is agreed, we contact the individuals in confidence and ascertain their willingness to discuss a new opportunity. At this stage the client’s identity is withheld from the individual concerned.
If a ‘target’ individual expresses an interest, we arrange an informal meeting to ascertain the individual’s reasons for potentially seeking a move. Following the meeting, if we believe the individual is a good match for our client brief, and we are convinced there are genuine reasons to believe the individual is open to a move, we request from our client that we reveal their identity to the individual.
We then speak again with the individual, secure detailed information and then prepare a detail and confidential ‘Search Candidate Brief’ for our client. The next step is to arrange a meeting for all parties to discuss the opportunity.
We manage the entire process through to offer, references and acceptance.
Why U&P Executive Search?
We have dedicated specialist consultants, experienced in high level executive search within our niche sector. The advantage of using U&P is our intimate and specific knowledge of talent in the market. We guarantee to work ethically and to complete assignments every time. U&P is therefore uniquely placed to secure the top talent in our chosen market sector.
The levels of Executive Search we offer
This is an agreement between U&P and our customer whereby the customer pays a retainer (upfront fee) to perform a specific, exclusive search, using a very detailed brief. This requires a meeting so that we can fully understand your business and the nuances of your requirement. The agreed fee (paid in three stages – upon instruction, at offer, upon written acceptance of offer) is normally calculated as a percentage of the expected annual salary and package. As part of this process we may be asked by our customer not to conduct executive search on behalf of certain named competitors. Retained search is the preferred option of most U&P customers.
This is a specific search but broader and more heavily biased towards known individuals in our field. The shortlist will be longer than with retained search. U&P will normally only agree to undertake a non-retained search in order to build initial trust with a client, and on the understanding that future assignments will be on a retained basis. The fee is calculated as a percentage of the agreed annual salary and package and is payable upon the commencement of a candidate. Again, we require total exclusivity.
I hope this clarifies what Executive Search is, and what U&P offers.
Contact us if you’re looking for an Executive to help lead your business to success.