7 Advantages of Using an Executive Search Firm

Sep 04, 2018

Companies need to have an effective human resource recruitment process. The process needs to be cost — and also time — effective. An effective hiring process will not only reduce the costs of hiring staff but also reduce the turnover rate.

The recruitment process should result in hiring staff that meets the required skills and complement the culture and values of the organisation. Moreover, the process should result in hiring top performers. This is important as according to McKinsey & Co. top performers are around 400 percent more productive as compared to average performers.

In roles involving high complexity such as IT managers and software developers, top performers were an amazing 800 percent more productive! This goes to show the importance of an effective search process for meeting staff requirements.

Did you know that the cost of a bad hire, especially at a senior level, is around £50,000?1

The costs include:

  • •Training
  • •Decreased productivity
  • •Advertising a new position
  • •Hours spend screening each candidate that applies for the position
  • •Interviewing potential candidates for the position
  • •Shortlisting and re-interviewing potential candidates for the position
  • •Performing background checks
  • •And more

Companies that screen and interview each potential candidate for positions in-house may receive hundreds of resumes for a vacancy. Screening each candidate takes a considerable amount of time. Let’s do a little math here:

  • You need to hire 10 employees.
  • You get around 30 CVs for each position, which equals 300 CVs.
  • You spend 5 minutes reviewing each CV and cover letter
  • That amounts to more than 25 hours of just reviewing and screening the employees

The shocking part — 78% of in-house recruiters stated that half of the resumes they received belonged to unqualified candidates.

Instead of wasting precious hours screening for qualified candidates to call in for interviews, you should consider hiring an executive search recruiting agency. They can decrease the workload associated with the recruitment process, as a result, your company's HR staff can dedicate their time to managing other important functions such as creating effective policies to reduce turnover. The headhunter will search for the best candidate on behalf of your company, and provide you with a list of the most qualified candidates for the job you are seeking to fill.

When it comes to headhunting, companies of all types and sizes can benefit from hiring an executive search firm. Here are some of your company can benefit from getting the help of a firm that specialises in recruiting professionals.

1. Quickly Fill Vacant Positions

A typical stretched out in-house hiring process can result in reduced revenues. This is because vacant positions will negatively affect net productivity. Some executives wrongly believe that having a position remains vacant for long will result in labour cost savings.

The fact is that the economic damage to some vacant positions such as IT and sales can be as high as £5,000 per day.

Every day a position remains unfilled represents a missed opportunity that can't be recovered. Unfilled positions cost about £18 billion to the British economy every year.

Moreover, you should know that skilled candidates are in the market for a short time. According to a research by Office Vibe, the best candidates remain in the market for about 10 days. So, you need to hire quickly especially for posts that require technical skills.2

Another cost of vacant positions for firms is that it creates a burden on existing staff. The staff has to take on additional responsibilities until the position is filled. This in combination to excess overtimes could result in employee burnout and productivity issues.

Experienced headhunting firms focus on recruiting the best talent in the minimum time possible. They know the techniques to search for qualified individuals for a position in quick time. The firms will screen candidates in bulk and pin down the right candidates for the job.

2. Hire Experienced Personnel

Locating the best candidates for a position is a not only time consuming but also a costly process. Hiring managers need to assess job functions, carry on an audit of internal talent, and search for the right candidate for a position. These tasks put an extra burden on the human resource personnel.

All the effort and money involved in recruiting staff will go to waste if inexperienced candidates are hired for the posts. The costs of hiring the wrong persons will be high for a company due to the additional training required to perform the tasks.

Getting the help of an executive search firm will increase the chances of hiring the right person for the job. An experienced executive search firm will actively search talented individuals for your firm. Hiring an executive search firm will result in time as well as cost savings as compared to in-house recruitment efforts.

3. Recruit Passive Candidates

Passive candidates are those who don't actively search for opportunities, as they already have a high-ranking position at a renowned company. Companies have to actively pursue these candidates, but it requires time, effort, resources, and skills. They have to invest resources into convincing a passive candidate to jump ship and work for them.

For this reason, it's better to consider hiring an executive search agency to extract top-ranking passive candidates. Make them aware of the opportunity, and persuade them to join the company. Companies can place their trust in the executive search agency to filter out candidates, both active and passive, and set up interviews with the company.

4. Fill Roles that Require Technical Skills

Companies with specific technical requirements for a position may experience difficulty in hiring a candidate that meets all their requirements. If they do it through an executive recruitment agency, it will result in increased chances of securing a qualified candidate in less time.

An executive search firm will shortlist candidates suitable for a position that require technical skills and help the company quickly fill the vacant position.

5. Ensure Transparency in the Recruitment Process

Another key benefit of hiring an executive search firm to fill vacant positions is that it will result in a transparent hiring process. This will avoid the prospect of your firm facing liability for any bias during the selection process.

Companies in the UK need to ensure that the selection process conforms to the equal opportunity law as per the Equality Act 2010.3 Every individual should have an equal chance of being hired without any bias or discrimination in terms of the following.

  • Age
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Gender
  • Disability
  • Maternity and Pregnancy
  • Marital Status

Companies that don’t conform to the EOC legislation could have to pay millions of pounds to the victims. This will also tarnish their brand image and result in reduced profitability.

Professional search firms treat every application with equal importance. No candidate is rejected based on protected characteristics mentioned above. They follow a strict procedure to establish equal opportunities during the search process. So, getting the help of an executive search firm to meet staff shortfall will prevent liabilities due to discrimination during the hiring process.

6. Perform a Thorough Background Check

An experienced executive search firm can schedule the right candidates for interviews after a comprehensive background. The headhunting firm will verify the information in the resume to ensure that it is accurate without any factual inaccuracies.

The executive search agency will carry on a background check to verify the degrees mentioned in the resume. In addition, the company will confirm information about work experience mentioned in the job application. This is an invaluable service since a survey had found that around 46 percent of the resumes submitted for a post contained some type of false information.4 Moreover, nearly 85 percent of employers had caught applicants lying on their applications or resumes according to a 2017 employment screening benchmark report.5

These background checks will not only ensure that the right candidate is hired but also prevent liability issues for some firms. For instance, a public transport company will be held liable in case it hires a driver with repeated driving under influence (DUI) convictions or a poor safety record. Getting the help of a professional headhunting firm will prevent costly litigations due to not performing a background check when hiring.

7. Prevent Damage to Corporate Brand Image

Relying on the internal hiring staff generally results in slow hiring. According to LinkedIn 2017 global survey, the hiring process can sometimes take as long as four months.6Apart from the costs associated with stretched hiring process mentioned above such as loss of productivity, increased employee stress, and reduced profitability, it can also do damage to your corporate image.


When a position remains vacant for long and comes repeatedly in the search results of job sites, it will present a negative picture of the company. Prospective employees will think that the company is not an attractive place to work.

A positive corporate image is important for effective hiring. You will lose out on the opportunity of hiring top candidates due to a negative corporate image. It will reduce the number of quality applications for the position.

In the current digital world of social media and review sites, your company can't afford a long hiring process. A long hiring process will also frustrate prospective candidates who have applied for a position at the company. They may leave a negative comment in job review sites or social media that will hurt the chances of recruiting top talent.

Getting the help of an experience headhunting firm will ensure that you quickly get the right candidate for the position. This will prevent any damage to your corporate image and also increase the chances of receiving highly talented and qualified individuals.

Other Benefits of Using an Executive Search Agency

Here are some other benefits of using an executive recruitment agency for all your hiring needs:

  • No need to sift through countless job applications
  • No need to schedule interviews, but only prepare for them and conduct them
  • No need to deal with administrative issues such as communications with potential candidates, including informing unsuccessful candidates and offering feedback and confirming candidate information such as references and qualifications
  • Eliminates the cost of posting jobs online on different mediums
  • Eliminates impact on in-house employees who can continue toperform their roles, duties, and responsibilities more efficiently
  • Eliminates overtime costs related to employing an in-house team to hire potential candidates for the position, especially during busy periods
  • Eliminates the probability of costs such as poor performance, re-hiring, and training
  • Eliminates training costs, as they will already have the skills and requirements needed for the job position


Companies that do not hire through an executive search agency face the risk of either prolonging the hiring process or hiring the wrong candidate for the position. If companies hire through an executive recruitment agency, they will benefit as the employee will be able to execute projects, assignments, projects, and other responsibilities in an efficient manner. In short, an executive recruitment agency can help companies make the “right choice” every time.

Hiring an executive search firm will economise the headhunting process. A specialised firm will carry out the search process in absolute discrete and trust. The services of the firm can ensure that the right candidate is hired quickly. As a result, the company (and the staff) won’t have to bear the costs of having the position left vacant for long.

Jefferson Maguire is a specialist executive search agency has been helping companies get the best talents for over two decades. We take away the risk and costs involved in searching for the right staff for different posts.

Our corporate customers are at the centre of what we do. We actively seek out the best talent, engage with them, and present a list of potential candidates that are ideal for the post. Our staff will first get to know your industry, firm and its culture, and then recommend a range of candidates who best fit the needs. We provide executive search services to companies belonging to different sectors including retail, FMCG, finance, venture capital, renewable energy, and sales and marketing. Contact us today if you want to know more about our professional headhunting services.

Cited Sources

1. http://www.careerbuilder.com/share/aboutus/pressreleasesdetail.aspx?sd=5/8/2013&siteid=cbpr&sc_cmp1=cb_pr757_&id=pr757&ed=12/31/2013

2. https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/7155-startup-hiring-tips.html

3. https://www.eoc.org.uk/

4. https://www.monster.com/career-advice/article/the-truth-about-resume-lies-hot-jobs

5. https://www.inc.com/jt-odonnell/staggering-85-of-job-applicants-lying-on-resumes-.html

6. https://www.slideshare.net/pedrooolito/linkedin-global-recruiting-trends-report-2017


Loading Conversation