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Executive Search Firms
Working with Recruiters & Search Firms || A Short List of Search Firms
To search this page for a search firm that works in your industry, use the Control-F command to open a Keyword Find for this page, then type in the word you want, like "packaging" or "healthcare".
Quick Tip from a Search Consultant: Your resume might be retained by a firm for as long as two or three years, so create and keep an active email account for the long-term and check it every week or two. A free Yahoo! mail or Google Mail account can be one of your best investments. Also consider keeping that mobile phone number that you put on your resume, even if your relocation takes you to a different part of the country.
Working with Recruiters & Search Firms
The information here applies to both retained and contingency recruiters. Always remember that recruiters work for the employers who have hired them, not for you. Recruiters and search firms do not work to help you find a job. They work to help their client successfully fill a position. While they appreciate hearing from you and about you, do not expect to hear from them unless you fit a search profile they are currently pursuing.
Executive Search Consulting Demystified
...an excellent overview of how these recruiters work and how they compare to contingency recruiters from Kulper & Company LLC
A Job Hunter's Guide to Executive Recruiters, Robert L. Pearson (ExecutiveAgent.com)
...how to work with executive recruiters. "When working with executive recruiters, it is essential to understand their business - how they spend their time, how they make money, and how they can most appropriately help you advance your career."
How to Judge a Headhunter by Joe Borer (asktheheadhunter.com)
...excellent article on how to evaluate recruiters, a.k.a. headhunters. Not all headhunters are good, not all are ethical, and not all have the real experience and connections with clients to make good placements. This article enumerates how you, the job seeker, can evaluate a recruiter and determine if he or she is worth your time, effort, and attention.
Recruiter Realities (ExecutiveAgent.com)
...this short article from Executive Career Strategies outlines the realities that drive recruiters and how you may be able to improve your chances with them by understanding their work. There's also a nice side-bar with tips on letters to search firms.
Positioning Yourself with Executive Recruiters, Ian Christie (ExecutiveAgent.com)
"This isn't an article about basic mechanics. You want to know, presumably, what these folks are thinking and how you can profit. Well, here are some of my best pointers."
Tools of the Executive Search Trade by Louise Garver (ExecutiveAgent.com)
"How can you make recruiters and employers knock on your door and invite you to the "dance" otherwise known as the interview? Knowing the tools of the "executive search trade" can help you increase your visibility and make it easier for recruiters (and also employers, for that matter) to find you. "
Working with Recruiters, Marie E. Minder (Webgrrls.com)
...outlines the role a recruiter plays in the job search, what to expect from a recruiter, and how you can enhance your relationship with someone in this field.
The Care and Feeding of Headhunters and Recruiters, Kathryn Lee Bazan (QuintCareers.com)
...nice article from a recruiter on how these people work, how best to work with them, and what to watch for in a bad or unethical recruiter.
Selecting and Working With the Right Search Firms: Things You Need to Know, Dr. Frank Heasley, MedZilla.com
...excellent article by a long-standing recruiter for the healthcare and life sciences industries.
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A Short List of Search Firms
Jump over the description and resume tip to the list of search firms
This is a short list of executive search firms and services to whom you might submit a resume for consideration in their many searches. Some will post information about current searches so you can direct your response appropriately, but many won't. They are also quite selective about who they will and won't consider as a candidate for a position.
This is by no means a full list. Some search firms who specialize in a particular industry or occupational field are listed under the appropriate category within Places that Post Jobs. We also have some job banks which specialize in director to executive-level candidates within the general job banks and on our page for the Executive Job Search. And, if you don't see firms that fit your profile, you can always use the Directories of Recruiting Firms to create your own contact list.
Quick Tip from a Search Consultant: Your resume might be retained by a firm for as long as two or three years, so create and keep an active email account for the long-term and check it every week or two. A free Yahoo! or Google email account can be one of your best investments. Also consider keeping that mobile phone number that you put on your resume, even if your relocation takes you to a different part of the country.
Start the List of Search firms
Based in Cincinnati, OH, Allen Associates is a nationally recognized retained search firm focused on Chief Executive Officer, Senior Level Functional, and Board Director assignments in Advertising, Home Appliances & Electronics, Building Products, Housewares, Branded Products, and many other industries. Qualified candidates are welcome to submit a resume for consideration, but please note that only those candidates who match the qualifications for current searches will be contacted. Your resume will be retained for the future but you may not receive an immediate response from the firm.
C. Anderson & Associates
...a retained executive search and recruitment services firm that specializes in the placement of top Sales Professionals. Based in Minnesota, the firm serves clients nationwide. Qualified candidates are encouraged to submit a resume to the firm.
Austin McGregor Executive Search
..."Our strength is recruiting President/CEO’s and their executive team members. [...] Our clients range from billion dollar publicly-traded companies to venture-backed startups in both the Commercial and Federal markets." I do not see a specific "submit your resume" link, but highly qualified candidates can contact the individual partners by phone or email.
Beaudine & Associates, Inc.
...based in Georgia, this executive search and leadership services firm works to find the best candidates to fill the best leadership positions in their client companies. Working with both large and small employers across many industries, Beaudine & Associates is happy to hear from qualified candidates looking for new and challenging opportunities. A sample list of industries and positions filled is available on the website along with contact information and instructions on submitting your resume.
Benchmark Human Capital
...based in McLean, VA, near Washington DC, this executive search firm is setting a new standard in recruiting and the placement of highly qualified candidates in great positions. It's not strictly retained, but it is much more than contingency. They have 2 main practice areas. Their Software/Internet practice has handled searches ranging from industry leaders to pre-revenue startups and including many of the nation’s leading venture-capital firms, startups and emerging growth technology companies. Their Federal IT/Services practice has successfully filled many executive level positions including Division Presidents/GMs and VPs/Directors of Business Development/Sales. They also recruit Board of Directors/Advisory Board Members for companies looking to understand and penetrate the government market, and their clients range from established companies selling products/services into the homeland security, defense, intelligence and civilian spaces to early-stage technology companies looking to make their first federal sale. Qualified candidates can learn more about this firm and submit resumes through their website.
...an executive search firm specializing in retained senior management searches. Their specialties include Technology, Board / Corporate Governance, Sales & Marketing, and the emerging Israeli technology market.
...."a retainer-based management consulting firm that has developed a successful search practice specializing in the identification and selection of financial, information technology, and human resource professionals at senior management levels." Potential candidates can review some current searches and submit a resume if they are qualified for the position.
...executive recruiter based in Florida but covering many industries and job areas. You can review several searches on their website. Along with the executives, they also help with searches for executive assistants.
Creative Leadership, Inc.
...a retained recruitment service. They offer specialized selection and interviewing processes to employers. To you, the job seeker, they offer some nice positions. They will only accept resumes in response to an advertised position, and you must have the specific job code on your resume when you submit it.
CSI Executive Search
...with offices in Austin, TX, and New Orleans, LA, CSI Executive Search works with great clients placing candidates in excellent positions across the US. Qualified candidates may submit a vitae for consideration. Instructions are on the website.
Dalton Group LLC
...a boutique search firm that specializes in retained search work across most industries and most functional executive roles. Their clients are typically Boards or C-level executives who have need for adding quality leaders to their teams. While they are generalists, they have a strong presence in the Christian nonprofit world with more than 50 leading ministries as clients. Potential candidates can review a small selection of they searches they are currently handling, look at some searches they recently closed, and submit a resume for consideration in current or future searches.
ERS Recruiters: Executive Recruiting Solutions
...based in the greater Cincinnati area, ERS has successfully completed searches for senior-level management in numerous industries, including manufacturing, news media publications, sales, and financial management. Qualified candidates are welcome to submit a resume for consideration in future searches.
ESS Retained Executive Search
...based in Santa Monica, CA, this firm used to handle particularly difficult searches for other retained search firms. Now they do it themselves. Very few searches posted here, but lots of potential because they cover several high- growth industries and fields. Feel free to submit your resume if you feel you fit into some of the many fields they cover, but be sure you read their info on submitting a resume before you send.
The Executive Group
...based in Atlanta, GA, this search firm specializes in conducting searches throughout the United States for positions in Accounting, Administrative Assistant, Financial Services, Human Resources, Management, Marketing, Project Management, and Sales.
...based in Los Angeles, this executive recruiting firm offers candidates the opportunity to review several current searches and submit a resume for consideration for these and other opportunities.
Executive Search International
...a boutique search firm based in Newton, MA. "Boutique" merely means it is a small firm, "small" usually translating well into "a single office, very focused on and responsive to client needs". There are no sample searches for candidates to review, but a list of past clients is posted. Potential candidates may submit resumes per their instructions, but only senior-level candidates will be truly considered for inclusion in their pool.
Executive Search Solutions
...specializes in providing executive search and specialized research solutions to emerging growth companies. "Whether your company is looking for senior executive management, marketing, sales, operations, technical, or professional services leaders, we can customize a solution that fits your needs." Qualified candidates are welcome to submit resumes for consideration.
A. E. Feldman Associates
...since 1967 this executive search firm has been working to recruit qualified executives for the Financial, Legal, HR Consulting, Communications / Technology, and Luxury Products industries. You can learn more about this search firm, review several current searches on their website, and submit a resume for consideration.
Gabriel & James Executive Search and Human Capital Solutions
Based in the UK but operating on a global basis, Gabriel & James is a provider of executive search, recruitment process outsourcing, talent management and leadership development solutions. They have specialist divisions operating across Financial Institutions (including actuaries, accountancy and banking), Professional Services (including legal, management consulting and human resources), Life Sciences, Consumer, Private Equity Board Services, Technology and Public Sector & Charities. Qualified candidates can review a list of current assignments and apply for any or merely submit a CV for consideration.
...search firm offering retained executive search along with other recruiting services to clients in the consumer goods and technology industries. Interested candidates can review some current searches on their website and submit a resume for consideration.
Harris & Associates / IIC Partners
...a leading global retained executive search and board advisory consulting firm. "We provide clients with direct access to world-class leadership talent." You can review their many practices and read the bios of their consultants here, but they do not post sample searches for you to review. If you believe you are someone who might fit into their searches, you should send a resume directly to the most relevant consultant.
Heidrick & Struggles International
... one of the world's largest executive search firms. Senior executives who wish to be included in their database can submit a resume to a Heidrick & Struggles consultant who specializes in your particular industry or functional area. These contacts can be found on the website under "Industry Expertise," or you can peruse their Office Locations to find contacts in specific offices around the world.
Intrepid Consulting Group
...retained search firm specializing focused on technology leaders (CIOs and senior execs for technology companies). Qualified candidates interested in new opportunities may want to contact the firm at the location provided.
....a national retained executive search firm serving organizations that are key to the country's civic infrastructure. "We work with not-for-profit, public sector, and corporate clients throughout the United States. Our clients range from major health care institutions to local human services agencies, from national advocacy organizations to small community development groups, from Fortune 500 companies to venture start-ups, and from the nation's most prestigious universities, research institutes, and foundations to public and independent schools." Check their list of current searches, recently closed searches, or submit your credentials for consideration.
JB Executive Chase
...handling both retained and high-level contingency searches. Qualified candidates are welcome to submit resumes. I like their comparison of Contingent vs Retained searches and the outline of a retained search. Good information for employers and job seekers alike.
Korn / Ferry International
... a worldwide leader in recruiting and search, covering senior-level searches, middle-management recruitment and college administration recruitment. They offer two different online services for persons wishing to be considered as candidates in the hundreds of searches they perform each year. eKornFerry.com allows senior executive candidates to register their resume with the firm, review posted searches, and submit their resume for consideration. Candidates who are found to match current searches will be invited by the consultant handling the search to review a particular search and research the company through links provided by the consultant. For the mid-level executive, there is Futurestep, their service for management professionals. Futurestep "offers registrants complimentary personalized career feedback from our validated proprietary assessment tools, and the opportunity to be considered for exclusive middle to upper management level positions." You can also "Flirt with Opportunities" by reviewing searches currently under way and submitting your information for consideration. With both of these services, Korn/Ferry is establishing a long-term relationship with the job seeker, holding your information in their database and offering you career management information and advice designed to help you move forward in your career. Both require an extensive registration process that includes more than just a resume, but both are free to the job seeker.
Kulper & Company, LLC
...based in NJ, this executive search firm has successfully conducted numerous search assignments in many industries, including Consumer Products, High Tech, Telecom, and Financial Services, as well as nonpforit and Higher Education, but they do not limit themselves to just these arenas. You can review their current open searches plus some recently closed searches to get an idea of the work they do. Information on how to submit a resume for consideration is available.
Leadership Capital Group
...this search firm focuses on the CEO and Board through SVP/VP level. Qualified candidates are invited to contact them about potential searches.
....operating since 1970, Lucas Group offers executive search services in 18 locations around the world. You may recognize their name from other services they offer, including military transition. Their website is filled with good information and resources for job seekers, and you are welcome to search their database of current openings.
Austin McGregor Executive Search
...retained search firm with extensive expertise in the technology industry (software, services, telecom, etc.). Their clients include government contractors as well as consumer and industrial services. Qualified candidates should approach an individual search consultant at one of their many US offices to inquire about possible opportunities.
...executive search group based in Minnesota, they specialize in Sales, Marketing and Engineering/Operations, while their Financial division handles searches in this broad field. You can easily submit your resume for consideration for current and future searches. IT and information management specialists may want to look at McKinley Consulting, a contract IT consulting firm.
...a boutique executive search firm concentrating on leadership positions in senior management, technology, finance, and human resources. Qualified candidates can review a sample list of current searches and register for consideration in these or future searches.
Pinnacle CEO Recruiters
..."focused on recruiting proven business services CEOs for private equity and venture capital groups focused on the business services sector. Pinnacle recruits CEOs for CEO jobs with private equity groups that have executive sponsorship programs, where private equity groups partner with a CEO first, and then work with a CEO to acquire a company, with the CEO assuming the CEO job of the acquired company." Interesting niche. You can review a few current searches on their site.
Premier Human Capital
...based in South Carolina, this recruiting firm works to help their clients fill mid-management to executive level positions. Some areas of specialty include logistics, engineering, and automotive, but they also cover healthcare along with other industries. You can review a short list of current searches they are handling, but submitting a resume is the better way to connect with them. One area I would suggest everyone look at is their resume tips. I especially liked tips #4 which talks about how much Professional Experience to include, and #7 with its discussion of the 12 career highlights that interest employers.
Rice Cohen International
...one of the larger executive search firms based in the US, and working worldwide. You can review some of their current searches here, and qualified candidates are invited to submit a resume.
SRG: Sales Resource Group
Founded in 1999, SRG specializes in placing sales executives within the technology industry. They offer retained executive search services as well as other recruiting services as needed by their clients. Interested candidates can submit a resume for consideration. I also suggest you take the time to read over their list of Questions you should be prepared to answer during an interview as well as their Recommended questions to ask the employer.
...a global executive search company represented in 19 countries currently handling more than 350 searches worldwide. You can opt to view all searches currently being handled by their many divisions or select a target office and view only those searches. Candidates can submit their CV to the candidate database at each office and to subscribe to their monthly electronic newsletter in English. All office sites are available in English and the native language of the region in which they are located.
Signium International / Meridian Partners
...an executive search firm with partners around the world and clients ranging from some of the world's largest companies to medium-sized businesses, entrepreneurial start-ups, and not-for-profit organizations. Qualified senior professionals are welcome to submit their resume for consideration.
Slayton Search Partners
...a retained executive search firm, serving some of America’s most recognized companies in the following industries: Associations & Not-for-Profits, Consumer & Retail, Financial Services, Industrial, Legal & Professional Services and Technology. Slayton professionals also possess expertise in several functional areas including: Finance, Human Resources, Legal, Marketing and Supply Chain. Qualified executives can submit a resume to their online database.
Southwestern Business Resources
...an executive search firm with offices in the US and the UK. They recruit in several fields and geographic areas. They have a full list of their recruiters on the site, including a biography and email address. Qualified applicants should review the bios and specialties of the recruiters and contact them directly for consideration.
... a leading management consulting firm specializing in senior-level executive search and board director appointments. Spencer Stuart has fifty offices in twenty-four countries around the world. Part of SpencerStuart.com is their Talent Network, a way for executives to register with the firm and receive potential opportunities via email. The Talent Network also offers participants access to a database of current openings the firm is working to fill, self-assessment tools, salary benchmarking reports, and much more. Don't miss the other great information resources available on their site.
Talent Asset Group
...based in Connecticut, TAG is a minority owned national executive recruitment firm that specializes in conducting national searches within the fields of Human Resources, Sales and Marketing. Current searches are posted on the site, and qualified candidates can contact the firm through their website or by phone.
Telecom Associates Executive Search
.. headquartered in London, UK, this is a firm of international executive search consultants specializing in telecommunications, technology, media and finance as well as other industries. Qualified candidates are invited to review their current featured searches or to submit a confidential resume using their special form. At the time of review, their featured searches covered several European countries.
"Venerable Partners is a senior-level retained executive search firm serving clients in a variety of industries throughout North America. From the Fortune 50 to emerging companies backed by some of world’s leading venture capital and private equity firms, we are at the nexus of helping companies solve their most critical human capital needs in executive search and board recruiting." This Chicago-based firm handles board recruiting as well as executive search needs for major companies across the US. Highly qualified candidates may contact the firm through their website.
...based in Medfield, MA, Xavier Associates offers executive search, recruiting, and candidate research services to organizations throughout the U.S. They work across several industries, and opportunities can be reviewed on their website.
Information on Executive Compensation is also available.
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