12 Things to Expect When You Work with a Search Firm

| by Shannon Williams

In the world of social media and electronic networking, the processes of hiring and getting hired have taken on entirely new shapes over the past 5 years.

Sometimes it is helpful to work with a search firm to help you navigate this complicated and changing landscape. Matching organizational needs with innovative candidates is part of what I enjoy most about my work at Armstrong McGuire.  I am often asked about the benefits of working with a search firm, so I decided to take a crack based upon the way we conduct searches at Armstrong McGuire.

What should you expect when you work with a search firm?

  1. A partnership that values the uniqueness of your organization. Hiring is not a one-size fits all process. The firm you work with should take the time to understand your organization and the characteristics you need most in your next CEO, development director or other team member.
  2. A good working relationship and strong communication between the search committee and the search firm.
  3. A clearly defined position profile that is written to attract the right candidates to your position.
  4. A strategic advertising and marketing plan that utilizes job sites that your desired candidates use and the social media sites where they form community.
  5. A strong network of potential candidates to contact on your behalf.
  6. Screening and assessment of all resumes filtering the top candidates to the search committee.
  7. Structuring and scheduling interviews for the committee.
  8. Helping the committee assess the strengths and potential weaknesses of all candidates.
  9. Checking references on behalf of the committee.
  10. Working with the committee and the final candidate to determine the most appropriate salary and benefits package.
  11. Communication of decisions along the process with EVERY candidate that applies—candidates often thank us for letting them know even when they are not chosen. Most candidates tell us they never hear anything from applications they submitted.
  12. More time to focus on running your organization.

Even in the electronic age, hiring is a time consuming process. A solid partner can carry the load and give you 


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