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When a company or enterprise is tasked with filling a position in their vaunted C-Suite, it can prove more challenging than it may initially appear. The powers that be may find their time isn’t best maximized by simply posting the position online. 


Many senior-level professionals with years of experience and prestige are like the veteran Hollywood actor who no longer needs to audition for roles. Their reputation means the work comes to them, so it’s unlikely they’d be auditioning by submitting their resume in response to a job ad. Many executives also aren’t actively seeking another opportunity unless the offer is lucrative enough to lure them from one C-Suite to another.


That’s where executive search comes in. The executive search process is a comprehensive approach to identifying, attracting and recruiting senior executives for an organization. It involves a range of activities designed to identify and engage top talent, assess their qualifications and suitability, and ultimately help companies find the right candidate to fill an executive position. 


Here’s how an executive recruiter works their magic. 


Initial Consultation

In the first preliminary steps in the candidate and executive search process, an executive recruiter meets with their company client. Here, they’ll discuss the specifics of the executive search, plus the job requirements, qualifications and ideal candidate profile. 


This type of consultation provides an opportunity for the search firm to gain a clear grasp and understanding of their client’s objectives, and to develop a customized search strategy tailored to their specific needs.


Research Phase

Now the search for that ideal candidate begins, and the search firm starts to work its magic using a variety of tools and techniques. A search firm may launch a targeted outreach campaign to discover potential senior/exec-level professionals likely to fall in the passive job seeker camp. They may also leverage their industry networks and contacts, and use different manners of data analytics to identify high-potential candidates. The goal during this phase is to build a solid, comprehensive list of qualified candidates meeting the client’s specifications.


Candidate Evaluation and Screening

Once a candidate pool has been identified, the stakes are still high, since each one is uniquely qualified and poised to fill the C-Suite vacancy. Now, the screening process begins to assess a candidate’s basic qualifications and interest in the position. Those who pass round number 1 may then be invited to participate in a more in-depth interview process, which may include multiple rounds of interviews with members of the client’s executive team. 


Throughout this process of candidate shortlisting, the recruiter will provide ongoing guidance and support to both the client and the candidates to ensure a smooth and successful outcome.


Selection/Job Offer

Lastly, the executive search team nears the finish line, working with their client to narrow down the competitive candidate list to one finalist. 


This doesn’t mean the executive recruiter’s job is done though. Here, they work closely with their client to develop a competitive compensation package and employment offer, where they play a critical role in both negotiating the terms of the offer and helping manage the candidate’s transition to the new role.


Harvest the Best Talent With Headfarmer

Our executive search process is not headhunting. We don’t headhunt. We headfarm. Unlike other firms that reactively search for candidates — hunting until they find a possible fit for their client’s open position –– we take a different approach that nurtures relationships, yielding success for years to come. Work with us to gain access to a wider pool of A-Listers for your C-Suite. We bring years of industry knowledge and expertise to fill critical leadership roles with the right talent. 


If you have an executive or senior-level position to be filled, we’d love to work with you. Contact us today for more.

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