An effective search requires a comprehensive project plan and detailed management if it is to yield the desired results. The process that we follow has been tried and tested across most industry sectors, primarily at Executive level, but also for the identification of specialist technical skills.


Understanding Your Needs

The first stage of a Search Assignment is to obtain a detailed Recruitment Specification. This involves a very detailed discussion with the Hiring Executive to understand precisely the requirements of the job. This means understanding the expected Outputs of the position. In other words, the basis on which the appointed individual will be assessed after appointment. Equally important in our understanding is the behaviours that will enable an individual to be successful in the role and in the company. Finally, a key element of the fit of an individual in a company is an alignment of the value systems of the individual and the company.


Unless there is an alignment of technical skills, behaviours and values the ability of the company to retain an individual will always be limited. It is, therefore, critical that this information is obtained first hand.


Crucial to the overall process is for us to gain an understanding of our client’s value proposition to prospective candidates. Why would a candidate leave the employ of a company where he or she has been successful to join our client?


The Search Process

We have an extensive database of candidates, who may or may not meet your requirements. They do, however, provide a starting point from which we will start our name gathering. We will also target individuals in similar businesses or in businesses where the skills may be relatively easily transferable.


Once this process has been completed, we will discuss the list with the Hiring Executive. Some candidates may, at this stage be eliminated and others would be added.


We then move onto the actual “head hunting” phase. During this phase each one of the candidates is contacted and their level of interest in the role is ascertained. In the event that a candidate is interested, we would then undertake a telephonic screening of that candidate to ensure that they meet certain minimum criteria. At this stage, we may or may not disclose the identity of our client. This would depend on the confidentiality of the assignment.


Candidates who express interest and who meet the minimum criteria are then invited in for an initial interview. This is a structured process and an interview guide is prepared for each position. The Interview Guide would cover technical competencies, behavioural fit and values alignment.


The structured approach that we have adopted enables us to rate and rank each candidate on an equitable basis. The top ranked candidates would then be shortlisted and presented on a face-to-face basis to the Hiring Executive.


Client Interviews

Global research, undertaken by Brad Smart or Smart and Associates, shows that over 60% of new hires fail to meet the Hiring Executives expectation. A further 20%-25% meet expectations, whilst only about 10% of new hires exceed expectations.


The cost of this volume of mis-hires is astronomical, both at a corporate and an individual level. The primary cause is that traditional interview techniques do not accurately predict future performance. In order to reduce the risk to our clients, of mis-hires, we have introduced an approach called Top Grading. This approach to assessing candidates has been developed by Smart & Associates and is without question the most effective candidate assessment tool in the market today.


Top Grading is used by successful companies such as Accenture, General Electric, Lincoln Financial Services, Barclays and more recently in South Africa by ABSA and Tiger Brands. It ensures that as a client of Laser Outsourced Recruitment, you understand at a very deep level exactly what a candidate’s motivations, historic performance and competencies are. It enables you to match the candidates against the Recruitment Specification and determine any potential weaknesses.


Top Grading demands a time investment from the Hiring Executive. The return on this time investment, in our experience, far outweighs the cost. It certainly demands less time than performance managing under-performers.


Reference Checking

Inherent in the Top Grading process is Reference Checking. Not only does the threat of reference checking elicit more truthful responses from candidates, it also provides an opportunity to check on whether a candidate’s views, on his or her own performance, are grounded in reality.


The Top Grading Reference Checking process is thorough, detailed and provides a deep insight into a candidate’s past performance – the most likely predictor of future performance


Facilitation of Offers

We work with our clients and candidates through the offer negotiation process. This is seldom a straightforward process at executive level and if not managed can lead to the loss of a top candidate. Equally, if effectively managed it ensures that both the client and candidate reach a mutually beneficial conclusion.