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Straight Talk for the Recruiting Profession


Business Development, The Business of Recruiting

The Advantages of Working With An Executive Search Firm In Asia


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Howard Lim

Working with an executive search firm in Asia insures that you make the right decision when hiring a person for your business.

The costs of a bad hire can have negative results:
  • Downtime in sales activities.
  • Downtime in planning, operations and strategy.
  • Downtime in expanding your business.
  • Downtime period!
Why do people invest millions of dollars and significant time in Asia, then decide to skimp or save money on their recruiting costs by searching internally, posting on job boards, or, using a firm outside of Asia to find their person?
It just doesn’t work.  The paradigm I like to use is trying to fit a square into a round hole.  Over 50% or more of hires made with the above strategy result in the person leaving or being dismissed.  After 10+ years in Executive Search and Business Strategy Consulting, in both the US and Asia, you wouldn’t believe how many times I’ve seen this.
Companies can avoid this by partnering with a regional firm in Asia.  Here are 3 advantages of working with a search firm in Asia and how it can aid a company’s talent acquisition strategy:

1) Knowledge of Local Markets

Search consultants based in Asia have clear advantages when understanding the local market.  A large-percentage of the search professionals will have an excellent understanding of the language, culture, business practices as well as access to candidates not available through the general market.

2) Time Zone

Being in the same time zone makes it easier to connect with potential candidates.  When you’re not working with a 12-hour time difference you can call, source and speak with people during the same business hours. When a client hire is critical, being able to meet several candidates face-to-face and provide the information to the hiring company is very important and can’t be done when you live 5,000+ miles away.

3) Marketing and Customer Intelligence

Strategically partnering with a search firm in Asia broadens a company’s presence and brand in the market. Through the organic process of search and touching several top-level candidates in the country, a  company’s presence and impact gets naturally expanded. Working with a local search firm also gets a client market intelligence regarding their industry.
It behooves companies who are not currently using search firms in Asia to reconsider.
Howard is president of Incredible Consulting Group. He spends 50% of his time in Tokyo and traveling throughout Asia. The other half is spent in the San Francisco office. He has over 10 years experience in business consulting, strategic advisory, and human capital solutions, His firm works with companies to expand and grow their business in northern and southern Asia and in the US.