How to Choose a Search Firm for Healthcare Executives

Recruiting for the C-suite is a highly specialized search in the field of healthcare. Hiring an executive search firm focused on this industry is crucial to a successful placement & smooth search process.

What are the other questions to ask when selecting the right executive search firm?

How many clients do they have?

Great search firms don’t overload on searches. When a search firm places a candidate, they cannot recruit from within their client’s company for a specified period of time, typically about 1 year. A lot of clients may be great for business in most industries – it could be argued that retained executive recruitment is not one of them. Keeping the searches to a focused minimum allows for a much wider candidate pool, and a greater opportunity for success.

Who handles the executive searches?

It’s typical in large search firms that senior partners “sell” clients on their company’s services.  Once the partner makes the sale, often times, that individual passes the search off to a junior associate who does the bulk of the work. In some cases, this can be a red flag, especially when dealing with C-Level roles as the junior partners may not have the experience required to connect with this level of senior executive.  Additionally, there are nuances that can be lost due to the communication gap of passing searches off to junior associates.. It is best for the client if one senior search firm manager handles every candidate interaction, every client interaction and everything in between so there is no miscommunication at any step in the process. This personal touch to the search process yields the best results.

How much of their business is repeat or referral?

The best advertising is client advocacy. Ask the executive search firm how much of their business is clients either coming back or sending in new business. Search firms are built on relationships – trust and repeated success.

How do the search firm and client work together?

Ask questions about the process, like how they identify candidates, how they evaluate candidate backgrounds and how many candidates will be put forward for the client to review. How quickly is a candidate placed?

These questions will help narrow down on the right executive search firm for your healthcare organization. Ideally, you will only need to go through this process once and can focus on searching for candidates rather than searching for the search firm. Choose a partner – someone that makes you feel like they are part of your team and invested in your success.

Reeder & Associates is a boutique retained executive search firm with a national presence in healthcare. 85% of our business is repeat or referred because we focus on maintaining an outstanding relationship with our clients. If you are interested in learning more about adding us to your team, contact us today.


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