The Challenge

Our client was a Private Equity-backed B2B services business that needed to hire a new HR Director, initially to help drive the transformation of its core UK operation but then to expand the role to include action as the CHRO of the total enterprise.


Our Approach

We started by gaining input from the Private Equity owner, the Group CEO and the UK MD on the challenges facing the business, the priorities for the new HR Director and the optimal candidate profile. These discussions not only enabled us to crystallise and agree the brief but also to ‘sell’ the opportunity in the most compelling way possible in the marketplace.

We then began our research, drawing both on our broad existing knowledge of leading HR talent together with structured mapping and sourcing both in our client’s sector as well as in adjacent and analogous areas. Based on this, we interviewed nearly 30 potential options, using depth competency-based discussions to gauge their fit with the brief. We presented a longlist of 10 lead candidates to the client and agreed a shortlist of 5 for them to interview. These candidates brought a range of sectoral experience and profiles, ranging from proven CHROs attracted by the PE environment to rising stars, keen on the challenges of a no.1 role and a transformational agenda.

We produced detailed reports on each of these 5 individuals and provided support throughout the process of interviews, giving feedback to the candidates as well as relaying any concerns or issues they had. The client came down to a choice of two options and we argued strongly for the selection of a young rising star; we then helped in the contract negotiations to ensure that this candidate was successfully landed.

The Outcome

Since joining the business, the new HR Director has done extremely well, quickly having real impact in the UK and stepping up to the broader group role. His combination of blue-chip functional expertise and real commercial savvy is proving extremely effective.