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Advice For Hiring: Need To Recover A Failing Search? Here's How.

Updated: Dec 11, 2019

Many Human Resources leaders and operating executives are able to recall one to two year old searches during which the incumbent search firm wasn’t delivering. They properly managed the firm, yet something unforeseen prevented normal completion.

COMMON CIRCUMSTANCES: Often there are one or two typical circumstances in failed searches; (1) Company retained a large firm’s local or region’s industry-specific Partner, sometimes in their own city, or (2) Company retained a highly specialized small firm.

POST-MORTEMS generally show that large firms didn’t introduce top talent from leading companies or adjacent sectors, or in the city or region, and that specialist firms’ narrowness restricted the range of talent presented. Employers must understand why.

IN THE LARGE FIRM circumstances, the most relevant and desirable target companies can be off-limits due to being existing clients, or, they are untouchable due to unrevealed, parallel efforts to make them a client; they avoid recruiting from them in hopes of them becoming a client.

IN THE SPECIALIST FIRM circumstances, clients can be shown uninspiring or previously known prospects because the consultant’s narrow specialization limits his/her wherewithal to bring forward differentiated and relevant talent from adjacent sectors.

WHEN RECOVERING from a failing search, and to avoid one in first place, select a search firm that can commit upfront to going into the top geographic and industry-relevant target companies. Then, select the senior consultant who is hands-on and experienced in delivering to high profile stakeholders in Human Resources and hiring operating management.

Access Point Partners has been tasked enough times to resolve another firm’s failed assignment that we’ve developed a specific client solution, Search Recovery.


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