[English] Phân tích thất bại trong Headhunt và đưa ra 1 vài giải pháp

Chào cả nhà! Dạo này Kc hay được các bạn sinh viên tín nhiệm hỏi han. Trong khả năng có thể, tôi đều cố gắng trả lời với hy vọng các bạn có thể học tốt môn nhân sự. Và hôm nay, sau khi xin phép và đã được sự đồng ý của bạn Bùi Đức Lộc - Sinh viên k47D Kinh Tế Đối Ngoại ĐH Ngoại Thương tp Hồ Chí Minh, tôi liền đưa bài viết của bạn lên đây. Đây là 1 bài viết tiếng Anh. Khi nào có thời gian tôi sẽ dịch lại để xem những thứ tôi dịch có đúng ý bạn Lộc không mới được.

Giờ thì mời ACE cùng đọc.


The art of the good executive search firm is not only to know all the potential candidates but ; more importantly ; to know theirs motivations , what sort of position might attract them and to be able to assess if the fit is right .

For example : with the forementioned case ; the chief accountant doesn’t pay much attention to the salary . She said that the main incomes of her is often besides her official salary . And more important ; with the current work ; she has established many close relationships with the people in and out her company ; so ; she can have much informations to make investment on other fields like stock exchange or real estate ….etc ..

Moreover ; she has worked for that domestic company for about ten years . She said that the working environtment is not very professional but it doesn’t make her stressful & she has been respected as one of the most important officer . Now ; if she move & work for the bank as an employee ; she will lose her self – esteem . In the East culture ; that’s unacceptable .

It was recommended that you engage a headhunter sooner rather than later . Some of the headhunters said that they often make a talk with the former colleague . This achieved two objectives : it gave them a good idea of which key areas to focus on for the incoming candidates ( in terms of work priorities and relationships ) ; and it helped achieved some buy – in for the search from the managers .

For example ; the bank mentioned above didn’t use a search firm but the employee who have that duty appeared to be unprofessional ; he only know that the bank need a good accountant . So ; he didn’t provide my aunt detailed information about the work . As a result ; she can’t recognize the new responsibility ; the new essential expertise .

Here is a selection of headhunters’ views on what they need to do to get it right:

1 / The individual doing the search should be the one who has the closest relationship with the client. Searches sold by one person and done by another rarely get done properly.

2/ Headhunters get it right when there is empathy between them and the client, so that they really want to work for the client through thick and thin. No one likes criticism and most headhunters have a strong sense of when a particular search is beginning to go sour.

3/ Headhunters should not have too many assignments on the go at once. If they do have other searches pending, these should be at different stages of the search life cycle, which is typically:
– define the universe of qualified candidates and meet the client to discuss (2–3 weeks);
– approach and meet the candidates (2–3 weeks);
– present candidates to client (1–2 months).

4 / Headhunters get it right when they have a thorough knowledge of the client, are well briefed, know the marketplace and the candidate pool, and have the time to be thorough and systematic.

5/ Headhunters get it right when they take the time to find valuable references – not the former colleague or personal friend suggested by the candidate, but industry experts known to the search firm. For example, when one headhunter was undertaking a search for the head of tax for a bank, his first calls were to several senior tax lawyers who were able to rank the candidates effectively.

6 / The headhunter and the client should establish a rigorous time frame and stick to it.

7/ Headhunters should visit the location of the post to be filled and get a feel of the culture so that they are able to describe the working environment to the candidate (and therefore help to sell it). This will also help them decide whether a candidate is right for the environment.

The most important criteria

The following list of criteria to consider when selecting a headhunter was drawn from discussions with hr directors at major organisations and headhunters:
1/ Expertise. Does the headhunter understand your business, the job, the culture, the organisation, the market?

2/ Ambassadorial ability. Does the headhunter represent your company well in the marketplace? Does the consultant tell the story in such a compelling way that the candidate cannot help but want to join your company? The headhunter must be a good ambassador for your company.

3/ Reputation. Does the headhunter have a reputation for highquality work?

4/ Speed. How sure can you be that the headhunter will act with the desired speed, bearing in mind what you can realistically expect if the job is to be done well? For example, for a senior appointment, will the headhunter provide a shortlist in one month and complete the search in 3–5 months?

5/ Communication. Will the headhunter report every week and keep you informed about progress?

How to maximise the relationship with your headhunter

Search firms must transform themselves from transaction-based vendors to trusted advisers, and develop close personal relationships with their clients.

This is the key to maximising the relationships.

Bob Damon, Korn/Ferry

For a successful outcome, both the headhunter and the client must work hard at ensuring the relationship runs smoothly. You should give the headhunter as much information as possible about your company and
the post. Explain why the role may be difficult to fill. Be clear and provide explicit milestones and benchmarking criteria to evaluate performance. Identify success criteria and treat the headhunter as part of your own team. As Nicholas Maupin, hr director at Cap Gemini, says: Develop an ongoing close relationship. The headhunter should never disappear for one month and come back with a shortlist. This is a recipe for disaster.

Because so many searches commence after a key employee has departed, speed is often seen as crucial. This leads to a search for candidates who are available and are what is known as “front of mind”. However, it is far better to conduct a systematic analysis of the market, including alternative or “out of the box” ideas, which can lead to a better solution. Provided the consultant really knows the market, a thorough
review of a long list of candidates usually leads to a better shortlist and appointment.

Headhunters know only too well when an assignment fails because their client has not been sufficiently committed to the process. If a client is to ensure a successful relationship with a headhunter it is using, the
advice that those in the search industry would give is as follows:

1/ Be focused with a clear idea of what you want to achieve and a precise, consistent picture of the ideal candidate. Mixed messages are unproductive. Be decisive about the relevant candidates. These are usually
presented in two stages:
– long list, a mapping of who’s who in the sector;
– shortlist, 6–10 ideal candidates (who are qualified, fit the brief and are potentially interested).

2/ Do not treat the headhunter as a supplier of bodies. There should be a real partnership based on openness and trust.

3/ Make sure that there is good communication between those who will decide who to hire, the human resources department and the headhunter. The executives who will ultimately make the hiring decision must be clear about the qualities, skills and personality they are looking for; the hr director’s role is to ease the process; and the headhunter needs to manage the relationship between the company and the candidate. This will vary depending on the seniority of the post being filled: with junior executives, the company is buying and the candidate is selling; with senior executives, the company is selling and buying and the candidate is buying as well as selling. The headhunter, the company and the candidate should operate as a smooth-working and effective triumvirate.

4/ Show sincere interest in the search and do not simply outsource it to the headhunter. If confidential reports are provided, read them. Make sufficient time available for interviews and think through what questions you want to ask. Communicate to the relevant people within your firm that the search is a top priority.

5/ Give the headhunter plenty of access to your management team and the company workplace so that the consultant can fully appreciate the culture, the people, the challenge of the job and what skills and personality traits the jobholder will need. The more access the consultant has, the better able he or she will be to propose suitable candidates.

6/ Be clear aboutwhohas responsibility for the project in yourcompany so that all communication is focused and efficiently managed.

7/ Give prompt and thorough feedback on the candidate. If the headhunter has got the profile wrong, provide feedback to allow changes to be made promptly. It is also unprofessional not to provide candidates with feedback or to make them wait too long for it.

8/ Use one search firm for an assignment. Employing two (or more) will lead to confusion in the marketplace and will send mixed signals if candidates are approached by two firms for the same job.

9/ Reach hiring decisions quickly. Do not get bogged down in discussions about terms and conditions. Agree the terms swiftly and then follow up in writing. The candidate will not be impressed with your company if this part of the process drags on, and you may even lose him or her.

10/ Keep on top of the headhunter, but do not be overbearing. Ask for updates and say clearly when you want progress reports. Make sure you have regular meetings and make your headhunter feel part of the team.

Executive search can go wrong for all sorts of reasons. Eric Salmon’s Anthony Harling provides examples of when headhunters get it horribly wrong and describes some of the warning signs:

1/ The headhunter does not understand the brief and cannot sell the story to the candidates. The search consultant must thoroughly understand the client’s business.

2/ Communication is lacking and the client does not know what is going on during the assignment. The consultant disappears and comes back 60 days later with a totally inappropriate set of candidates.

3/ The headhunter does not listen properly to the client’s needs. He or she focuses on certain aspects, ignoring others that are more important.

4/ The headhunter has insufficient sector or industry knowledge. His initial research is superficial and he relies exclusively on his existing database instead of actively researching 50–100 candidates.

5/ The headhunter is already overburdened with other assignments and cannot devote sufficient time to the search. A consultant should have no more than five or six active searches going on at the same time. Ask your consultant how many active searches he is working on.

6/The headhunter should not have accepted the assignment in the first place. For example, the consultant knows little about the industry sector but desperately wants to work for the client.

7/ The client puts pressure on the headhunter to complete the task quickly. Realistically, a search for a senior executive will take a minimum of 3–6 months.

8/ The headhunter is not open about problems that will occur during the search. For example, if the client has a poor reputation in the market, it will be difficult to attract top candidates. Or the client may be unwilling to pay a realistic level of compensation for the type of candidate being sought.

9/ The headhunter takes on a job in one country but the search is to be conducted by its office in another country whose share of the fee is not enough to motivate it to work hard on the search.

10 / The headhunter is overconfident or overly optimistic. Be wary if the headhunter does not anticipate any problems.

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