How to get noticed by executive recruiters

The last two years have been perhaps the most challenging for employers in a generation. On the one hand, they are grappling with the cost of living and rising inflation that has seen a spike in salaries. At the same time, the number of vacancies remains at a decade-high, yet the availability of candidates remains at its lowest levels in almost 40 years.

Against this backdrop, it is easy to assume that because the demand for candidates far outstretches available supply that job seekers would hold all the cards and be able to cherry-pick the roles they want. But this simply isn’t the case.

Employers may need to fill their vacancies quickly; however, the uncertainty of the last few years means they want to be sure they have the right people onboard with a longer term view in mind.

This means candidates need to work a little harder at getting the attention of those companies they want to work for and the recruitment partners who are hiring on their behalf. Here is how they can do just that:

Optimise your digital profile

If you haven’t updated your LinkedIn profile for some time, you are effectively leaving jobs on the table. Literally. LinkedIn is where hiring managers and executive recruiters hang out most of the time and that is because there is no better platform which can provide access to talent.

For each of your last three roles, including your current one, detail your responsibilities and key achievements. Ensure your profile picture is up to date and looks professional (you’d be surprised, believe us!), and post frequently. Share insights from industry publications and influencers and pen your own thoughts in posts that demonstrate your expertise and knowledge.

Perhaps more importantly, be accessible. If you are open to new opportunities make it easy for executive recruiters to reach out and connect with you. Within you LinkedIn profile you can update the ‘Contact info’ section with your preferred email address (for obvious reasons, do not use your work email!) and preferred contact phone number. Good opportunities hang around, great ones don’t. So, be visible, be contactable, and be ready for that all-important next role to come.

Write for those who will listen 

If you are seeking an executive role, chances are you have considerable experience in your field and can speak authoritatively on it. In which case, talk about the challenges, pain points and opportunities that exist and share your views or insights in the form of articles on the company website or your own blog and even the media that serves your industry. Journalists are always keen to hear from those within the industry who can offer different perspectives and provide greater understanding on trending topics.

Talk to those who will listen

Don’t just limit the sharing of your expertise to written formats. Take a look at any conferences or seminars coming up within your sector and pitch yourself to the organisers as a potential speaker. Much like the media, event organisers like a mix of the familiar (i.e., ‘known’ speakers) and up and coming figures from within the industry. Speaking at events is not only a fantastic way to build your personal brand, it can also get you noticed by those who can help shape the next step in your career.

Engage with connectors

One form of self-promotion that has and will always stand the test of time is networking. For some, the idea of entering a room and mingling with strangers for a couple of hours fills them with dread. However, this can open up a whole new array of opportunities you might not otherwise be privy to.

You might not meet someone who is hiring for themselves anytime soon, but that doesn’t mean they won’t in a few months’ time or have a contact within their network who they could introduce you to. Networking events are very much back on the agenda now that we are out of the pandemic, so take advantage of them.

Be proactive

There are around 35 million user profiles on LinkedIn in the UK – that is a lot of people creating a lot of noise. For executive search firms seeking people with your experience and expertise, this is both a help and a hinderance. While the pool of talent within which they can fish from is vast, finding the one person they want is challenging and all the algorithms in the world might still see that perfect candidate evade them.

So, if you are open to new career opportunities, don’t wait and hope that the right search consultant will contact you with the right role for you. Be proactive, take the proverbial bull by the horns and search them out.

Ensure you are selective too. Only opt to work with a search firm that a) fully understands your motivations and area of expertise, and b) can demonstrate a track record of successfully supporting people like you to achieve their career goals.


To get on the radar of executive search firms requires a combination of strategy, effort, and dogged persistence. By following the steps above, you can optimise your personal brand and maximise the potential that you will catch the eye of a search consultant who could hold the key to help you land your perfect role.



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