Begin Executive Recruitment by Performing a Needs Analysis - dummies

Begin Executive Recruitment by Performing a Needs Analysis

By David E. Perry, Mark J. Haluska

After you’ve laid out your basic recruitment plan and assembled your executive search team, job one is to perform a needs analysis. That means confirming the need for the new hire and consulting with the hiring manager to identify the precise requirements for the job.

Confirming the need

Why does the position exist? What is its strategic impact? Does it contribute to revenue or efficiency, or support roles that do? Answering these questions will help you serve the hiring manager.

If there are no clear answers to these questions, the hiring team should think long and hard about whether the position is truly needed.

Defining the requirements

With the need confirmed, it’s time to outline the requirements. That means interviewing the hiring manager to clearly define the role, as well as to

  • Assess the confidentiality factor. Gauge the need for secrecy, whether for competitive or legal reasons.
  • Assess the urgency. Yes, time is always a factor. But there’s a big difference urgency-wise among filling a hole left by a key departure, recruiting a replacement for a planned succession, and creating a new role altogether.
  • Gauge the difficulty level. How hard will it be to attract the correct candidate? One factor will be how specialized the position is. Another factor: how much time you have to make the hire. You may have months, or mere days, depending on the circumstances. Finally, how much time can you personally devote to either overseeing the project or completing it yourself? Recognize any restrictions that may affect the project and plan accordingly.
  • Identify compensation factors: Now’s the time to talk about the total compensation package earmarked for the role.

For even more insight into the role’s requirements, review the corporate business plan to identify the role’s key performance indicators (KPIs).