February 17, 2017 – Executive search firm Diversified Search has appointed veteran recruiter Chris Berger to co-lead its human resources practice with managing director Judy Boreham.
With more than 25 years in human resources executive search, Mr. Berger most recently was co-founder of Connecticut-based search boutique RomanoBerger LLC, where he worked alongside partner Darren Romano. They collectively completed hundreds of searches for a client roster that included Allstate, American Express, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Cerberus, CIGNA, Coca-Cola Enterprises, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Goldman Sachs, The Hartford, HJ Heinz, Hess, Thermo Fisher, TimeWarner Cable, Starbucks and Yahoo!
A New Chapter
Mr. Berger first joined Diversified Search in 2009, where he led the firm’s human resources practice. He entered the field of executive search in 1999, when he was recruited into Korn Ferry’s HR search practice and subsequently joined its leadership team. Mr. Berger then went on to work in HR verticals at several search firms, including Highland Partners and CTPartners.
“After seven successful years as co-owner of a premier HR executive search boutique, I couldn’t be more thrilled and excited to begin a new chapter, rejoining a firm that I’ve continued to hold in the highest regard for many years, for the quality of its service to its clients and for its people,” said Mr. Berger. “I’m excited to rejoin my former colleagues and work with new ones, and to continue the work of building one of the best HR executive search practices in the market.”
“We are thrilled to welcome Chris back into the Diversified family,” said Judith M. von Seldeneck, chairman of Diversified Search. “Judy Boreham has done an outstanding job of building our human resources practice into one of the most thriving enterprises within the firm, and we know that she and Chris will be great partners growing this vital business over the next decade.”
There are very few search professionals with the depth and breadth of experience of Chris Berger in human resources search, said Dale E. Jones, Diversified’s president and CEO. “Companies want to attract and retain top-drawer talent, and that means being able to find dynamic executives who can excel in increasingly complex corporate human resources functions. “Chris is a master at identifying, recruiting, and placing this highly-sought-after talent,” Mr. Jones added.
Diversified Search’s HR practices specializes in identifying HR talent in the following areas: chief human resources officers (CHRO); talent acquisition and development leaders; total rewards / executive compensation leaders; organizational development leaders; training and development leaders; diversity leaders; and HR business partners.
HR Leaders In High Demand
The head of human resources today sits at the elbow of the CEO and maintains one of the most influential positions within senior management. “The role of the CHRO is no longer one that is just administration and transaction oriented,” said Mike Bergen, human resources global practice leader for Allegis Partners. “The focus now goes well beyond traditional people initiatives.” Today, CHROs are strategic executives that are constantly interacting with the CEO, members of the executive team, and an organization’s board of directors. They are business leaders first who happen to lead the HR function, say recruiters.
“The role of CHROs and their direct reports continues to evolve in terms of complexity and impact,” noted Kimberly Shanahan, president and CEO of accelHRate. These leaders, she said, are at the heart of linking business strategy with talent strategy. Every company today requires solid HR leadership, she said, from the largest multinationals right down to small businesses planning to expand. In the last year, accelHRate has conducted 15 senior level executive searches in human resources for PE-backed companies. A strong HR organization, she said, is now optimizing data analytics, systems, talent development & management, talent acquisition, change management, workforce planning, M&A due diligence & integration, risk, succession planning, and total rewards, among other areas. As a result, HR hiring is on the rise and it’s keeping headhunters busier than ever ….. Here’s some further reading from Hunt Scanlon Media.
Data-Driven CHROs In Demand As Role Shifts In Complexity
Executives say their company cannot succeed without an assertive, data-driven chief human resources officer (CHRO) who takes a strong stance on talent issues and uses relevant facts to deliver an informed point of view. Here are some key traits of HR leaders who are perceived as integral.
Demand for other types of senior level HR executives is also rising, according to recruiters specializing in the function. Hiring forecasts point to a growing sense of urgency within the HR community to prepare and plan for coming talent shortages. As such, top level HR functional leaders are in high demand.
Recent hiring trends data show that a full one third of companies polled said their organizations were hiring for HR positions. This number is up from 20 percent just 18 months ago. While the CHRO has always played an essential role within organizations, changing times have helped to elevate the position to new heights, say recruiters specializing in the sector.
Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media