AESC Reports Mixed Bag for Search Industry as Tight Hiring Trends Squeeze Recruiters

November 19, 2013 – Third quarter 2013 data released by the Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC) shows an industry focused on recruiting C-level and senior management positions — but at the expense of filling rank and file jobs for client companies. The average fee per executive search assignment increased quarter-on-quarter and year-on-year in the third quarter of 2013 (up 4.4 percent and 6.4 percent respectively), while the number of new executive search starts declined (down 6.6 percent quarterly and 11.2 percent yearly). The declining search volume is set against a strong rise in year-on-year revenues which were up nearly 12 percent from Q3 2012 to Q3 2013. “These trends from AESC show continued weakness in middle management recruiting which for many firms represents a significant chunk of business,” said HSZ Media managing editor Scott A. Scanlon. “I'm concerned that the number of new search starts has declined by double digits year-over-year, reflective of a generally tight hiring market. We see a continued squeeze on this all-important segment of the recruiting business for some time.”

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