Senior executives are often the face of the company. They act as spokespersons, contributing to brand image and reputation. Internally, teams look to the senior executives for guidance, inspiration and decisive results, and therefore, they are crucial members of a company’s human capital.
Executive hiring presents its own challenges for any company. Unlike regular employees, they will have unique professional histories and higher expectations in the hiring process. The role they enter is also significantly different to a regular employee, resulting in the need for a more thorough background check.
Due to the unique demands of screening executives, we have outlined our top six tips for conducting an effective executive screening program:
1. Don’t forget the candidate experience
Due to the seniority of the role they are applying for, the likelihood is that your candidate will face more thorough checks as part of your screening process. They may also be warier of talking to a third party about their personal details. But just because the screening process is more in depth, that does not need to impact the candidate experience.
Be sure to have a journey in place for high profile hires, providing them with information of what is expected and who will be asking for it along the way. The best talent will often have a range of potential suitors, so if your candidate experience is unpleasant, don’t expect them to choose you.
2. Beware of potential conflicts of interests
Executives may have other affiliations, such as board memberships and corporate ties that may pose conflicts of interest. Make these checks part of your screening process for senior level hires to be sure that no such conflicts exist, before it’s too late.
3. Extensive address history
Executives are often geographically mobile, with education and work history leading to them having a rich history based in locations around the world. Remember that when conducting screening on senior figures, be sure your check covers all locations they may have left a footprint, and over a time span that provides you peace of mind, or that is required by any applicable regulation.
4. Public image
In the event of media coverage, good or bad, for your company, executives often act as spokespersons. But are they up to the challenge? Be sure to check any previous media history your candidate has to determine how they deal with any potential media coverage.
5. Financial access
Unlike regular employees, executives frequently have access to company funds, and can impact the company’s financial health. A credit check identifies how a person has handled their personal finances, which you may choose to use as an indicator of how they will deal with company funds.
Executive candidates may be more concerned about privacy and confidentiality, given the public nature of the position and the salary that comes with the role. Reassuring a candidate can also help to enhance the candidate experience.
Today, the region’s companies are going through a number of changes due to transformations in the way that they operate, particularly the impact of digital advancements. With this, and the increased demand for experienced senior executives warranted by these changes, the above six steps could serve as an effective tool in any HR or compliance department’s efforts in mitigating the recruitment risk for your business during this critical phase.