Executive Search

How does Retained Search differ from other types of Recruitment such as Contingent?

Retained Search (also known as executive search or headhunting) differs from contingent recruitment in that the recruiter focuses specifically on the role they are recruiting for in exchange for exclusivity with the client.

With contingent recruitment a client may have utilised the services of several different recruitment agencies to look for the most suitable candidates. While on the face of it, this might lead you to believe that the client will end up with more candidates and therefore a larger recruitment pool, this doesn't always necessarily follow.

Recruiters working on a contingent basis know that they are in competition with other recruiters and if they know that a client has employed several agencies for their recruitment campaign then the recruiter is disincentivised to them to treat the vacancy as a high priority. In these circumstances it is possible for recruiters to commit a lot of effort to search for the perfect candidate but have another agency make a placement in the meantime. The opposition may not have taken the time and effort required to complete a proper screening process and may 'win' simply by being fastest due to them cutting corners in the process. Why should that matter to the hirer? Well it may not, but don't expect much (if any) loyalty back from the recruiter and it will certainly be difficult to build a great working relationship over the long-term.

Retained search creates an entirely different dynamic; it really is a partnership between the hirer and the recruiter. They work together to find the best candidate to fill their open roles. The hirer gives the recruitment agency exclusivity over the search for the candidate(s) and in return, the recruitment consultancy dedicates specific time and effort into the search for the ideal candidate for the client's vacancy.

Quite often retained search is used when a role is hard to fill or requires a specific skill set or when a level of trust and high quality of service has been built up between the company and the recruitment consultancy and they want to build on and enhance that relationship and essentially contract out their recruitment hiring process to a specialist consultancy.

Ultimately, retained search can often be about seeking out those candidates that aren't currently actively looking for work and attracting them into a new opportunity that they may not have considered otherwise. This is something that a dedicated retained specialist recruitment consultancy can do well, and provides the very best people available to meet the client's expectations.

What do ProTech offer as their Retained Search?

ProTech can offer a full executive retained search service. This is a tailored service for hirers to find the most suitable people for the key roles they are recruiting for. The hiring company are provided a Project Manager by ProTech as their own personal 'one-to-one recruiter' to liaise with throughout the selection, interviewing, offer and on-boarding process. Together with a team of dedicated researchers, your ProTech Project Manager will dedicate exclusive specific blocks of time to working the role and working hard to uncover the talent needed to satisfy the clients' needs.

The client is given weekly progress updates with an exact overview of how the search for their candidates is progressing. They are provided a progress report showing all the different candidates contacted, with information on how each has been progressed so far. This includes candidates that have been ruled out of the search, those that are pending and those currently of interest. Notes are provided next to all candidates with the reasons why they are excluded/included in the search to provide detailed feedback and information to the client.

Over time the Project Manager will also provide market information based upon the feedback received from all potential candidates spoken to. This might include a review of the job description, or a re-focus could be suggested to ensure that the right candidate is found for the role. ProTech may be able to offer the hirer advice or information regarding why the search is not working as expected and suggest changes that could make the role more attractive to candidates. Perhaps the salary isn’t quite at the market rate, rival companies are offering better conditions, or the location of the business requires more incentive for a candidate to relocate. It could also be because the job requires a very specific skillset which is not commonly available.

The Project Manager will be able to review this data and provide the client with a summary on the search for their candidate and offer tailored advice specific to them.

Ultimately at ProTech, we know the market, so we will only accept a retained search where our expertise can ensure the best results.

And we are honest. If we can't deliver, we'll have a straight up conversation on the weekly call with the client and inform them of the reasons why. The watchword is transparency all the way through with the client and working together as a team towards the end goal. If the hirer would like us to steer in a different direction, they can tell us that, just as much as we would tell them. Everything is about ensuring the optimum effort for the optimum candidate and ultimately the client receives 100% commitment from ProTech because we know we are getting 100% commitment from them.

In any retained search that we undertake, ProTech are relentless in our approach. If a potential candidate could be a perfect match, then repeated attempts will be made to contact them through different channels to then ultimately rule them in or out of the process. Literally no stone will be left unturned in our executive search.

Also, ProTech are only paid for the work that we do, so if half way through the process the client decides that they would like to take a different direction or use a different consultancy then payment is only made for the work undertaken to that stage.

Why should I use ProTech for an Retained Search?

ProTech can deal with all the applications and advertise the job through the clients own name rather than our own, or it can be done completely confidentially. ProTech will then field all of the calls and emails and other message channels, qualify all of the candidates, get together a shortlist before sending the absolute best candidates through to the client to recommend for interview. Essentially, we can look after every facet of the hiring process for the client from start to completion, leaving the client to focus purely on the interview process and deciding which candidate will be a great fit for them.

ProTech can be flexible to the clients requirements. It may well be that a highly skilled person leaves your business and needs to be immediately replaced due to importance, but that the long term hire to replace them needs  to be absolutely right. In these circumstances it could be that ProTech provide a replacement staff member on a contract basis who can competently perform the role, while undertaking an executive search for their long term replacement.

When ProTech are engaged on a retained search we are laser focused and ruthlessly efficient in meeting the expectations of our clients. If you have a ‘hard to fill’ role and believe that our retained search option may work for your hire, then speak to one of our experts now about how we can help solve your recruitment nightmare.

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