Kandace Miller

By Kandace Miller
April 8, 2015

Written by: 
Kandace Miller 
The Cluen Corporation

How does your firm reach out to and maintain contact with all of the individuals that you built relationships with while executing a search? Do you keep in touch with candidates that are “off-limits” to deepen your industry relationships? Many executive search professionals and researchers are so focused on finding new talent, that fractions of existing candidate networks become underused and forgotten.

Countless hours and resources are invested in building initial relationships with sources and candidates. Maintaining personal contact with them is crucial to preserving an updated database. Generating email campaigns to keep in regular contact with your network can drastically enhance and support your firm’s business development efforts. Continual outreach and communication will create a more meaningful and personal relationship, develop a stronger referral network, and provide an overall positive view of you and your firm. While the candidate was not an ideal fit for a specific search at the time, they could in fact be in a position to help you attain new business and attract new clients.

Keeping in touch with potential candidates that are “off-limits” is often overlooked. While “off-limit” talents present many restrictions for executive search professionals, communication with these individuals can remain open and consistent. Maintaining relationships with “off-limits” candidates is a key element when sourcing and developing new business. These contacts are typically embedded in your client organization and within your historic specialty. Eventually, an “off-limits” candidate will be available for new opportunities, and having an existing rapport is a definite advantage. Having the right technology is essential to organize and implement an effective follow up strategy.

Below are some strategies that search professionals have executed using Cluen technology to facilitate proactive relationship management between themselves and viable, sought-after and passive talent.

  • Search “Close Out” Campaigns – Create targeted follow up correspondence upon completion of search. A simple thank you note detailing your firm’s success will enhance your reputation and leave candidates, sources and references with a positive experience of your relationship
  • “Off-limits” Campaigns – Maintain a good rapport with your “off-limits” contacts by proactively engaging and keeping in touch. When possible use these individuals as sources to develop new client and candidate contacts.
  • “Candidate Refresher” Campaigns – Create a list of contacts that may have lapsed in your communication efforts. Share company news and recent achievements and ask candidates for updated information. This provides a recent work history and more current data to use for your future searches
  • “Content Marketing” Campaigns – Send sources, references, “off-limit” candidates and general talent pools relevant content they may find interesting. You may have to develop different lists for different verticals. Examples include: company newsletters, industry news alerts or white papers

Many executive search firms pride themselves on reputation and repeat business. A successful c-level placement can generate new opportunities and business leads. Careful attention to additional contacts and sources beyond current clients with the above tactics can yield just as great as a return and increase revenue. Automate this process and enhance business development by implementing or partnering with a system you trust.

For more information and to contact the author with questions or comments please email kandacem@cluen.com.

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