My Title page contents

Get Strategic: Retained Executive Search Vs. Contingency Recruitment

Oakstone International Executive Search get strategic: retained executive search vs contingency recruitment

You’re an embryonic technology company. You have massive growth potential but you’re spawning in a fragile business eco-system.

Grow too slowly and you wither and die – eclipsed and eviscerated by faster and more agile competitors elsewhere on the globe.

Grow too fast and you burn out in a blaze of over-trading that engulfs and extinguishes your once-bright future.

Strategic planning is vital if you are to survive and ascend the tantalising growth parabola that awaits you.

A crucial element of that growth is expanding and managing your most precious resource: your intellectual capital, the innovators and leaders that will drive your expansion…

Strategic Challenges Demand Strategic Solutions
Don’t get me wrong: there is an important place for contingency recruitment – filling roles on an ad hoc basis.

At headline level, contingency recruitment offers useful advantages when undertaken well:

  • flexibility – you can call in recruiters as and when you need them

  • multiple agencies – using more than one recruiter enables you to fill emergency vacancies faster

  • larger talent pool – more chance of hiring staff faster.

But that’s not the full story. Here’s the reality when dealing with some agencies that lack specialist expertise. Let’s break down those bulleted benefits one by one…

Flexibility Comes At A Price

Hiring on the hoof with tactical contingency recruitment instead of strategic retained executive search can be very expensive in the long run.

Whistling up a recruitment firm on a piecemeal and reactive basis costs much more than if they were already in place, working proactively.

How flexible is it really if you continually need new specialists to drive your expansion…but your ad hoc recruiter is always going at it from a standing start?

Multiple Agency Recruitment…aka The Feeding Frenzy
Instructing multiple agencies is a little like tossing fresh meat into a pool of piranhas. Lots of savage little fish going nuts over the big juicy feast that’s suddenly dropped in.

But the feeding frenzy never lasts long.

Contingency recruiters swiftly rein in their efforts once all the easy meat is gone because their chance of getting any kind of return vanishes with all the competition around.

Not what you want. Go for calm, measured and strategic executive search consultants when sourcing key personnel – not hit and run hiring.

Larger Talent Pool – Or Is It A Swamp?
That big pool of talent – or collection of smaller pools – can look pretty seductive from a distance.

But on closer inspection some of those pools can look a little stagnant.

Analyse the market in detail and you will soon realise there is a great deal of overlap between agencies: lots of candidates will be signed to more than one recruitment firm.

And many of them may not fit your niche roles. You risk being saddled with an imperfect candidate – especially if the contingency recruiter needs a quick return from the aforementioned feeding frenzy.

They may offer you a candidate who is currently unemployed…or is unhappy with their present employer and looking to jump ship (possibly before being pushed).

But retained search involves long term groundwork and is therefore more likely to produce candidates in roles that will really move your profit needle.

Not only do you gain a key asset – but you may also be removing a linchpin from your competitor’s operation.

Going Retained Offers Higher Quality Candidates At Lower Cost
Retained executive search offers you high quality technical executives  – at lower rates over the long term.

New hires fit perfectly in your business because they have been sourced by a dedicated recruitment consultant who works with you on a day-to-day basis over a longer period of time.

Your retained recruitment consultant knows your business inside out and is able to keep pace with your rapid changes. It’s as if they’re part of your company.

They will source all your candidates and carry out all the pre-screening, all the phoning. They will prep the hopefuls to ensure they know your company and its requirements inside out.

That way they will shine at interview and you won’t miss out on hidden gems simply because they did not fully grasp the opportunities offered by your company and its innovations.

In short: your retained executive search consultant will quietly and efficiently carry out all the tasks you don’t have time to do because you’re 100 per cent busy reinventing the future.

Read why Oakstone International has built up an enviable reputation for excellence in executive search over the last 20 years.

Then see why our clients value our help so highly:

  • “Oakstone’s reach is international and their standards of integrity and professionalism and results have combined to make them the best recruiters we have worked with, by far.” Benoit Gourdon – Neolane, EVP Europe & Asia Pacific, Co-Founder

  • Oakstone “are highly professional, ultra-focussed and continue to provide me with an excellent service.” Graeme McLaren – Unica EMM Channel Leader, Europe

  • “They invest the time to fully understand; not only the specifics of each role, but also the nuances of our company culture.” Nick Sharp – WebTrends

Use Our Talent To Build Your Business
Let’s discuss how we can build a long-term relationship to drive your company’s innovation and expansion.