What is Executive Search?
Executive search is a specialized recruitment service used to source candidates for senior or other highly sought out positions. The result is an increased number of qualified applicants in your candidate pool to ensure that the resulting short list and final selection represents the best match possible between your needs and availability in the marketplace.
The search process includes several phases from developing position profiles to complement job descriptions, to recruiting qualified candidates, to pre-screening through in-depth interviews and reference checks, to advising on final on-site interview and selection techniques and contract negotiation.
For more than twenty years, Ken Haycock & Associates Inc. has been partnering with libraries to address critical organizational and leadership issues. Executive search is a key part of that platform of services. Our goal is to work with you to build the leadership capacity of your organization.
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Our Search Strategy: A Five Phase Process
- Phase 1: Planning and Profiling
- Phase 2: Candidate Identification and Prospecting
- Phase 3: Candidate Assessments and Recommendations
- Phase 4: Client Selection and Satisfaction
- Phase 5: Transitions
Phase 1: Planning and Profiling
Working with you, we analyze your strategic directions and business plan. We note the features of the community, the required set of skills and specifications from the job description, understand organizational relationships and identify any other predetermined characteristics necessary for the successful candidate. We then conduct structured interviews with key informants (the Board, senior staff, municipal stakeholders) to develop a draft profile of the successful candidate (abilities, dispositions, priorities), for review and approval by the Selection Committee and/or Board. This profile guides all subsequent work. Ken Haycock & Associates assigns both a primary consultant and secondary consultants to each search.
Phase 2: Candidate Identification and Attraction
At this stage we will have carefully assessed your needs, reviewed the written job description, prepared a written position profile that outlines the responsibilities of the position, qualifications required of the ideal candidate, and criteria for success. This specification guides our search efforts. Our experience indicates that knowledge of the community’s assets is also necessary to promote it as a desirable location to those outside the immediate area. We post positions to selected electronic sites, both paid and free. Our research team also accesses our extensive database of individuals and institutions to identify possible candidates and leads. Profiles are typically distributed to more than a thousand individual prospects. Our extensive network, rich database and exceptional research skills are critical assets. Two of our associates make selective calls to sources and prospects to identify and interest qualified individuals. You are informed of all applications with a brief summary of their qualifications and experience.
Phase 3: Candidate Assessments and Recommendations
A thorough evaluation of potential candidates and their applications ensues, with four reporting periods for client confirmation: all applicants with summary comments; recommendations for telephone interviews; recommendations for reference checking; recommendations for on-site assessment.
Assessment includes matching resumes and cover letters to the profile, in-depth two-hour interviews by one of our associates, verification of credentials, extensive reference checks against the resume and telephone interview and assessment of the individual strengths and possible limitations with respect to the position.
Each phase is undertaken fully by one associate for ease of comparisons and rank-ordering, with a different associate for each phase. A second associate reviews transcripts and confirms rankings. Our associates have had extensive experience in recruiting, interviewing, conducting extensive reference checks and selecting public and private sector administrators and leaders, ensuring that in-depth expertise is available to the search committee.
Written reports and evaluations of short-listed candidates are prepared prior to the interviews with the client. Once the consultants select the final candidates, they obtain necessary authorizations and contact individuals in addition to references, who can provide further insights about the candidate’s experiences. The collective comments made by these references are then reviewed with the client during the final on-site meeting. Confidential written profiles are prepared on individuals who most closely fit the position specifications.
Candidates are informed of their status at each stage on behalf of the client. During this period, the consultant reports progress to the client.
Phase 4: Client Selection and Satisfaction
Final candidates, each screened for suitability for the position, are interviewed by the consultant and the client who evaluate each on the basis of experience, leadership capabilities and potential fit with the client organization. The final interviews with each of the candidates, the consultants and the client for the posted position take place on-site. Opportunities are also provided for public presentations, social interaction and staff involvement, with a synthesis of responses and assessment of skills prepared by a second on-site associate for the client.
The lead associate facilitates discussion and deliberation, provides draft Board motions as necessary, presents the profile of the recommended candidate to the Board and negotiates a contract within Board parameters, as desired.
Phase 5: Transitions
After the successful candidate has been chosen, the search comes to a close. We contact successful and unsuccessful candidates. The search consultant maintains contact with both the client and the selected candidate, helping to ensure the candidate’s successful integration into the organization, orientation and training and performance appraisal. All placements made with Ken Haycock & Associates Inc. are guaranteed.
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Our Ethical Practices
Our Responsibilities to the Client
We guarantee that:
- We will advise clients of any potential conflicts of interest before undertaking a search assignment;
- We will accept contracts only where the client’s requirements are well defined and understood;
- We will ensure confidentiality of client information, plans and intellectual assets;
- We will recommend only suitable candidates who have been interviewed and assessed carefully, and who are judged to meet the requirements of the position description and
- We will not solicit applications from candidates we have placed in the previous five years.
Our Responsibilities to the Candidates
We guarantee that:
- We will treat all applicants, whether solicited or unsolicited, with courtesy and respect;
- We will ensure prompt, regular and complete communication with candidates
- Throughout the search process and will advise them in a timely and constructive manner when they are no longer under consideration;
- We will ensure that only qualified professionals will interpret any assessments that may be conducted;
- We will restrict all personal information, including assessments, to the client;
- We will not contact references without the candidate’s permission.
Once we determine client requirements, we will provide a written proposal for review and consideration.
Sample Projects Executive Search
- Urban public libraries.
- Regional public library systems.
- Major academic research institutions.
- Library consortia.
- National law firms.
- Professional associations.