20 Reasons to Engage a Search Firm

We solve hiring challenges - that’s what we do. Over the last 20 years, we’ve pretty much seen it all; the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to hiring.

During these years, we’ve learned a lot of lessons and we’ve also come to realize there are common times, in a company’s lifecycle, when they need to leverage the expertise of a niche recruitment firm.

If you are a Founder/CEO in one of these times, this is your sign to connect with your specialized startup and scale-up tech recruitment firm


1) The Hire You Need Doesn't Know You Exist 

Your dream candidates aren’t following you or your company page. They have never heard of your brand and seem unreachable on LinkedIn.  


2) The Hire You Need Isn’t Looking to Move 

Candidates have heard of your brand, but the ones you really want are happy in their current roles and therefore not checking out your company job postings, job ads, and/or website careers page. 


3) Lack of Time 

You’re screwed and you know it. Maybe you waited too long hoping your internal team could get it done but they're swamped or they're too junior to understand the technicalities of the role. Maybe you were waiting for perfection to apply on your website, hoping to avoid paying a search service, but they never came. Whatever the scenario, time has run out and you need someone yesterday. 


4) You're Planning to Fire "You Know Who"

You know you need to do it but you don't want the role sitting open because that will cost you more than the cost of the person currently in the role not getting it done. Throughout this mishire you learned you need a very specific person and experience set in order to ensure success. You also know that this will require a very targeted search done confidentially. 


5) You're Expanding

Congratulations! Your hard work is paying off and you're ready to hire someone outside of your area code or even country, but you have no clue where to begin or how to attract the talent you need.


6) You Have No Resources

You're at such an early stage you don't have an HR team much less internal recruiters who can do targeted search work.


7) Your Current Way is Not Working

Whatever you're doing... it's not working. Maybe it's your process or timing/cadence. Maybe it's your evaluation criteria or a lack of readiness to compete for talent. Whatever the reason, you need experts to remove roadblocks and implement recruitment best practices. Your business is software - our business is recruiting. We know what works.


8) An Outside Party Gave You a Lot of Money

Every founder’s dream, right? Well, welcome to having a boss again who also happens to own a part of your company! Most likely they will want you to hire folks who have done this before and have a proven track record of success. It's time to start focusing on the business and hiring strategically instead of "wearing many hats."


9) You Want a Talent Scout 

You recognize the value of someone thinking about your company and identifying talent even when they are not working with you on a specific search. You want to hear from someone who tells you "I met someone this week who works at your competition and is 'open.' 


10) You Believe in Outsourcing to SMEs

You couldn't possibly excel at every mission-critical part of your organization and you know it. This is why:

  • Osler is your legal dept for special situations.
  • PWC is your financial advisor when you need it.
  • IDEO is your product designer for that new Project X you'll be launching in Q4.
  • Martyn Bassett Associates is your search partner for strategic hires.


11) You Need Advice and a Partner

How long will this take? What are the salaries for this role? What is the market like for this talent? Who should we include in the interviews? How many steps should we take? If any of these questions are ones you’ve asked yourself, they would be better answered by those who live and breathe hiring in this market.  


12) Your Hiring Market Knowledge is Lacking

When was the last time you did hand-to-hand combat recruiting a VP Product in the US? Or cold called 500 CROs looking for a Unicorn. Maybe once in the last 4 years? Maybe never? We've done it (successfully) 6 times in the last 3 months. We have current, relevant competitive market knowledge that will help you conduct the same search successfully. 


13) Your Competition is Doing it

Let's be honest, most companies engage a third party to lead the search for a strategic hire. The fact that you never have is not the reality in today’s market. They are getting an edge that you’re missing out on. 


14) FOMO

Speaking of missing out, you're continually contacted by search firms who you know are successful in your niche, but you still won’t engage them. While you think you’re saving money, you’re losing out on talent you will never otherwise meet. Talent who can create massive wins, growth and produce a positive ROI on your search firm investment.  


15) Confusion Over the Outcome 

It's easy to get sucked into a vacuum and obsess over how many interviews you are doing, or need to be doing, or have done. Because it's easy to think if you only interviewed one more person you will find "perfection" or it will be easier to make a decision. These are lies. Interviews are not the intended outcome - a hire is the intended outcome.


16) Stuck on Busy Tasks 

Similar to the situation above, our experience has shown us that a hire could come from 1 candidate completing 4 interviews, or it could come from 30 candidates with 2 who complete 6 interviews and some who complete 5 interviews and others who complete 1, 2, 3 or up to 4 before falling off (your choice or theirs). This will certainly keep you busy! We are here to bring clarity and manage or remove “busy tasks” on the road to the outcome we all want, a hire. 


17) Your Reputation Isn’t the Best 

It’s been a bumpy go. Maybe there were a couple mass layoffs or maybe a previous leader had a toxic reputation. Whatever the reason, your reputation isn't the reality of your business, but it's still affecting your ability to attract top talent. Search firms can bring your new message and brand to candidates and sell them on your new improved vision/culture/product/outlook. 


18) Your Salaries Aren’t Overly Competitive

Your comp plan sucks but you don't know it. You have zero visibility into what people actually earn in the role you need to hire for. You need someone to have difficult discussions with candidates so you don't waste time with candidates who will never accept your offer, causing you to lose your backup hires.


19) You Want a Smooth Honeymoon

Speaking of money, you don't want to negotiate with a candidate because you want them to only experience the smooth result so when they join they feel and you feel that you both won and there are no hard feelings that will linger and come back to haunt either of you, post-honeymoon.


20) Your Advisor Told you to

Most business Advisors are in the business of helping a young Founder through the hurdles they personally have experience overcoming. They often refer Founders and CEOs to their network of business associates, trusted partners, service providers are part of that. However, due to location considerations, some Advisors may not know local resources to refer you to, only that you need to find someone yourself to partner with. 

If any of these sounds like you, it’s time to consider engaging a search firm! 

Martyn Bassett Associates is so much more than just a specialized headhunter. Our recruitment team takes the time to understand both your short-term hiring needs and your longer-term organizational goals to ensure we provide you with the right hiring guidance, market insights, and stellar candidate profiles to get your organization from point A to point B, successfully.

See some of our happy clients or book a free consultative call with us today.