As Adastrum Consulting, a leading executive search and talent advisory business, approaches its sixth anniversary it highlights its six biggest predictions for the future of the market.

1. Focus on the success of the talent not just the placement
It is no longer enough just to appoint a candidate and consider it a success once they pass through the door. Executive search consultants need to have a more vested interest in the outcome and success of the talent employed to ensure they are placing the best possible candidate in the best possible role, not just filling a gap.

2. Internal verses external talent
Assessing and benchmarking internal talent against external talent has become more prevalent to ensure the very best appointment decisions are made. Executive search professionals need to take on an advisory role to internal candidates who are ambitious and highly engaged but who may not have been the right fit for the specific role at that time, to ensure that they are developed, stretched and retained within the organisation and are then able to take on bigger roles in the future.

3. Understanding leadership behaviour
Much like our clients, executive search consultancies need to continuously evolve to remain on top and this includes developing relevant client services. It is vital to provide broader leadership assessment and development services internally, to take a longer-term view of the talent that is ‘ready now’ and talent that needs to be developed and grown. Executive search firms with a diversified service offering will be more successful than those that provide only executive search.

4. Embracing cross sector moves
Organisations that ask what problems need solving then look at those industries that have solved them rather than following their competitors will open themselves up to a much broader and refreshing talent pool than traditional thinking encouraging high impact cross sector moves.

5. Challenge diversity
Many clients have already embraced the positive benefits of a diversified workforce but there is still a lot of work to be done in this area. It is vital that executive search organisations maintain the momentum on challenging diversity as talent advisors and headhunters are ideally placed to influence this dynamic shift.

6. The impact of digital
Leaders of businesses, functions and teams will continue to face the new challenges of an increasingly connected world that will affect how an organisation operates, communicates and competes. The constant innovation and business model disruption from new, unforeseen competitors and the sheer pace of technological advancements all challenge our understanding of what ‘digital’ actually means to businesses and traditional models, behaviours and skill sets.

Commenting, Chris Underwood managing director at Adastrum, said: “Executive search has to be more than a transaction and well run process of execution. Identifying potential candidates has never been easier but engaging, attracting and assessing that talent has never been harder.

“Businesses from across all sectors are striving to innovate, channel new ideas and challenge traditional concepts, except, it seems, where people are concerned. I strongly believe executive search consultancies such as Adastrum Consulting have a powerful role to play in challenging this and delivering real change.”