By Anna-Louise Jackson & Anthony Feld
Business at executive-recruitment companies is improving, buoyed by increasing confidence among corporate leaders and a stabilization in hiring for senior positions in the financial-services industry.
Heidrick & Struggles International Inc. (HSII) and Russell Reynolds Associates say they see some increase in demand, a trend that was echoed in a recent survey of consultants by William Blair & Co., an independent investment firm. Meanwhile, sentiment among chief executive officers strengthened in April to the highest level in almost two years, as the Chief Executive magazine confidence index rose to 6.07 from 5.55 the prior month, based on an e-mail survey conducted by the magazine.
Rising CEO confidence is a “key indicator” that’s helping to boost demand in the executive-recruitment industry, said Timothy Ghriskey, chief investment officer at Solaris Asset Management in New York, which manages more than $1.5 billion. “In the mid-to-later stages of an economic expansion, competition for business leadership intensifies, prompting more companies to employ search firms to attract talent.”