Articles

Professional Services Firms In Australia - Retained Vs Contingency

by Marta Jordan Writer
When organisations require the best top-performing talent to fill their executive, C-Suite and senior-level positions, they reach out to an executive search firm. These types of professional services firms in Australia work exclusively and very closely with their clients to present the most relevant and best-suited candidates.   

However, some people can get confused when it comes to a retained search and contingency search. Is there much of a difference? Is one better than the other? 

Retained search explained

Retained search firms, also known as executive search firms, will charge their clients an upfront fee and operate on an exclusive basis. Their headhunters work closely with their clients to understand their organisation in depth to provide a context-based approach for identifying, assessing and presenting the best candidate for the position. 

Executive search firms specialise in sourcing top-performing talent for senior-level, executive, C-Suite and leadership positions. They collect as much information as they can about their clients and the industry they operate within to create ‘candidate personas’. This paints the picture of what an ideal candidate for a particular position should look like.

They use a rigorous process when identifying candidates and can shortlist only a few candidates before commencing interviews. They also have access to in-house research teams and a global talent pool of contacts, enabling their headhunters to reach out to relevant candidates quickly. 

Contingency search explained

Contingency search firms operate on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis. Unlike professional services firms in Australia, they will only get paid if the candidate they have presented gets hired. As they don’t work exclusively with their clients, contingency search firms will compete with other search firms, direct applicants and internal HR departments. 

As they work on a highly competitive business model, they cater to mid to low-level positions. Due to only getting paid if their candidate is hired, they focus on quantity over quality when it comes to searching for candidates. This means they are not the ideal choice when there is a vacancy for a high-level position that is difficult to fill. 

How is their methodology different?

When working with a retained search firm, their headhunters and research teams take their time to ensure that the agreed methodology and search tactic will provide the best results. They will understand the culture of the organisation, it’s long-term goals, the needs of the team the candidate will be managing and much more. 

As they work exclusively with their clients, they focus on finding a suitable executive candidate that will be deeply invested in growing with the company - not leaving shortly after for a better offer somewhere else. 

Because contingency search firms work on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis, they don’t provide this level of exclusivity. If a position becomes too difficult to fill, they will most likely move on. 

As you can see, working with professional services firms in Australia that specialise in executive search is the best solution when needing the best performing talent to fill a vacant C-Suite, executive or senior-level position. 


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About Marta Jordan Advanced   Writer

64 connections, 0 recommendations, 210 honor points.
Joined APSense since, September 24th, 2020, From Melbourne, Australia.

Created on Jan 24th 2021 23:15. Viewed 292 times.

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