According to the Association of Executive Search Consultants’ (AESC) first quarter 2011 report on the retained executive search industry that was just released, the industry is showing signs of steady growth and reason for confidence in the year ahead. This follows a 29% comeback for senior executive recruiting in 2010 against the lows of 2009. In the report, first quarter data revealed a 7% rise in the number of new executive searches started worldwide from the fourth quarter of 2010.
Peter Felix, President of the AESC, commented: “Our first quarter industry statistics demonstrate that demand for executive talent is being sustained at the recovery levels of 2010 and that a solid foundation is being created for further growth in 2011, in spite of the sporadic economic and political instability of the past few months.”
From a global perspective:
- Increased executive search activity was shown in Europe, particularly in Germany (+34%), the UK (+14%), and France (+9%) — rising from Q4 2010 to Q1 2011 — and also increasing year-on-year
- North America continued its already steady return from the low point of 2009, following a predicted pattern of early recessional recovery ahead of Europe
- The Asia Pacific region showed little quarterly change in senior executive hiring in Q1 2011, but held a 6% year-on-year increase in new searches started from Q1 2010 to Q1 2011
- Central/South America witnessed a 13% quarterly decline in the number of new searches started in the first quarter of 2011 against Q4 2010, but saw no change in year-on-year search activity.
Senior executive hiring within the Consumer Goods and Technology industries saw the greatest quarter-on-quarter strength, with the Life Sciences/Healthcare and Industrial sectors following closely behind.
Felix said: “Of particular note are the increases now being experienced in the major countries of Europe such as Germany, the UK, and France and in global industries such as Manufacturing, Consumer Goods, Health Care, and Technology. All in all, the search industry’s fortunes are positive and are linked to the universal feeling of optimism and renewed growth which is being experienced in major parts of the world.”
A full copy of the AESC’s Q1 2011 State of the Executive Search Industry report is available upon request to AESC members.