Culture: Somewhere over the rainbow or are we already home?
A FEW WEEKS AGO, I was writing about corporate culture whilst thinking about the Wizard of Oz, this was inspired by the news there may be a remake ...
Having recently arrived at Carlyle Kingswood Global (“CKG”), I have been impressed with the latitude enjoyed by its Consultants to employ commerciality in creating business lines which can really enhance our clients’ operations.
I shouldn’t be surprised by this, but it is amazing how many recruiters have a flawed model they cling to regardless of how badly it might work in a new market.
As a Financial Services recruiter, I have long had a broader palate than many Legal recruiters, having covered Legal, Compliance, Government Affairs, Company Secretarial and Front-Office positions over my two decades in the business. This has facilitated the creation of a more function-specific and less siloed approach to recruitment; the CKG CORE Financial Services Search business.
One of the major aspects of recruitment firms’ structures which fails to facilitate good client service is the tendency to have a 90+ per cent focus on one, highly specialised discipline. As a CEO of a hedge fund, family office, boutique broker-dealer or bank, there is very limited utility in developing lasting relationships with a recruiter in each of Legal, Compliance, Risk, Company Secretarial, Government Affairs and Operations. Thus, when recruiting a first-time appointment in any one of these areas, a CEO is forced to select a recruiter from ‘cold’.
This lets down the client, who will have to run the significant risk of appointing the wrong recruiter, often paying a substantial retainer before realising their mistake, or manage the unwieldy process of opening their vacancy to all comers in a contingent ‘bunfight’ which can lead to reputational harm as multiple recruiters approach senior candidates about the same vacancy.
It also lets down candidates, who, when seeking a senior role with a small or mid-sized business, have to register with as many recruiters as there are relevant vacancies from top-end search firms covering everything to highly specialist discipline specific recruiters to large, contingent businesses with hundreds of employees and no personal touch. Many of these will treat the candidate as a commodity, failing to work to find candidates the right role and simply using them to make up shortlist numbers on a single assignment before they become lost in the lists of time.
At CKG, the Financial Services desk is run differently. With a cross-discipline ‘CORE’ search function covering Central Organisational Risk and Executions, we provide a service tailored to the way funds and smaller financials set out their businesses, into Core or infrastructure and trading or portfolio management.
With expertise and track record in all areas of infrastructure and trade execution, we are able to cover:
Governance and Company Secretarial
In the organisational risk space and in the trade executions space:
This model effectively mirrors what our clients want and need when sourcing a search firm and also supports all lines of defence within each individual risk and control discipline, covering first, second and third line of defence positions as well as those analytical disciplines within the trade execution disciplines for which those skill-sets are appropriate.
It also allows us to employ lateral thinking when filling roles in newer or more difficult to fill disciplines such as lawyers moving into Compliance or Government Affairs or Risk professionals moving into senior Compliance positions. We have the connections and the database to facilitate such crossovers, allowing our clients access to the best candidates and our candidates to the best roles.
To date, our coverage has included placements of a Company Secretary to a FTSE 250 business, a Head of Fixed Income Compliance to a Major bank, a Head of Risk and Compliance to a leading Fin Tech and a Chief Risk Officers to a West-End Sovereign Wealth fund and a small Hedge Fund. We are also working on a significant General Counsel vacancy and are presently at final stages. We have also developed the contingent Legal and Company Secretarial function, leveraging the firm’s presence as a leader in both contingency and search work in Legal within Industry & Commerce and Private Practice.
This model works equally well for large banks and funds as for smaller boutiques and is particularly well suited to assisting CEOs and COOs in the build of a business or regional office. As such, we are presently working with a range of hedge funds, sovereign wealth funds, broker-dealers, family offices and FinTech businesses in building new businesses and staffing new offices in London, Luxembourg, Frankfurt, Belfast, Dublin, Hong Kong and Singapore and across Australia.
CORE will sit astride the contingent and specialised Legal, Compliance and Risk search functions, therefore allowing the CORE to access defined candidate pools, and offer our clients support at a junior level.
As a result, our clients will have access to a generalist infrastructure provider with specialist market knowledge and candidate pools normally associated with specialist desks.