Sanford Rose Associates was founded to serve the needs of corporate and institutional clients. President and Owner Ron Nieman specializes in recruiting for technology companies. Ron joined the executive search industry after more than 30 years of successful general management, technical management and marketing/sales experience in telecommunications and IT. Below, Nieman describes how to efficiently recruit and secure top tech professionals that are a good match for your company.
(Photo courtesy of Ron Nieman)
When corporations realize that they cannot afford to hire the wrong person, they turn to executive search firms for help. The cost of making a bad hire is enormous. Executive search firms are paid to source and introduce candidates who bring something special and unique to the client. Companies benefit from working with boutique firms that know their industry and the players – in other words, those that have market mastery. The challenge as a recruiter is to bridge the gap between the professional fees charged and the value or perceived value that is provided for companies. Our firm has found that one of the best ways to bridge the value gap with both clients and candidates is to have true proficiency in a very specific industry or niche: we call this Market Mastery. By having in-depth industry knowledge beyond the obvious, we are in a position to bring unique insights to the marketplace.
Once candidates are identified, they must be qualified according to several key hiring dimensions. For example, a candidate who is a strong technical match to the job requirements may not be a good chemistry match to the hiring manager or to the corporate culture. A good search firm will prequalify candidates that are a strong match in these five dimensions: technical, chemistry, cultural, expectations and experiential. A miss in any one of the five areas can lead to a bad hire that has a trickle effect in many areas of a company’s business. Before we start searching for the perfect candidate, it is important to gain a keen understanding of the requirements and then invest time in evaluating candidates with a successful track record who fit those requirements. This is why market mastery is important – a search consultant who knows the industry will generally be able to generate a short list of candidates in short order. Understanding what skill-set, experience and personal characteristics made them a success is important to determine overall suitability. Once we create a short list, we double check and make sure every individual involved in the hiring process agrees with the primary factors that need to be evaluated during the interviewing process. We must think beyond the obvious descriptors of ‘hard working’ and ‘leadership skills.’
The war for top talent in companies has created a shifting market that is driven by the candidate and other times by the employer. Despite these shifts, there are some organizations that not only acquire the best and brightest but also manage to retain them. These are companies that create cultures that attract, challenge, enrich, engage and fulfill their workforce. It’s not by accident that these organizations are some of the most successful year after year, and many of them utilize the expertise of executive search firms to supplement their own efforts. In summary, a search well done saves both time and money.
This article was written by Robin D. Everson for Small Business Pulse