April 24, 2017 – According to Deloitte’s global sector outlook report on life sciences, persistent talent shortages and the need to develop and retain employees with critical business and technology skill sets will continue to challenge global life sciences companies as they try to navigate a new world of work — one that requires a dramatic change in strategies for leadership, talent, and human resources.
This has led to a wave of expansion for search firms specializing in the sector. The latest: The RSA Group has expanded in the U.S. with the additions of Matt Vossler and Shawn O’Connor as partners.
Mr. Vossler will support RSA Group’s expansion in North America, continuing the firm’s commitment to serve clients globally. With an executive search career spanning 15 years, he combines expertise in life sciences with first-hand experience of the North American market.
Joining from Heritage Partners, a firm he co-founded, Mr. Vossler has worked across virtually all therapeutic areas and will collaborate closely with clients to build effective leadership teams. Earlier in his career, he gained search experience with Heidrick & Struggles and DAL Partners.
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“We’re delighted to have Matt join the team to strengthen our footprint in North America where our Boston office is a key strategic location for candidates and clients alike,” said Alex Bennett, RSA Group CEO. “His senior level search work is a testament to his ability to recruit the best talent for both multinational and local clients.” He said directly investing in the world’s largest search market was a great way to mark the firm’s 10 year anniversary.
Two Hotbeds of Activity
“I’m thrilled to be joining Alex and the global team at RSA,” said Mr. Vossler, “and to expand their North American reach with RSA’s innovative brand of executive search services.” He said Boston is a key market for the firm to continue developing and expanding relationships with existing VC and biotech clients there, as well pharma partners across the U.S. Boston, of course, is home to a number of technology companies and is a hub for biotechnology. The city is considered highly innovative for a variety of reasons, including its academic prowess, access to venture capital, and the presence of many high-tech companies.
For over 10 years, Mr. O’Connor has led his own firm, Shawn O’Connor Executive Search, working exclusively in the life sciences sector. He brings to the RSA team a strong knowledge of pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, diagnostics and medical devices in every specialization, from R&D to sales and marketing. Prior to this, he spent 18 years as vice president of human resources at Johnson & Johnson. He was also instrumental in establishing RSA Group’s initial presence in the U.S. over 10 years ago.
“I am delighted Shawn will be rejoining The RSA Group as partner in North America,” said Mr. Bennett. “Based in New Jersey, a hub of the life sciences and healthcare industry, Shawn will lead RSA’s growth in this region as part of the Americas leadership team.” For his part, Mr. O’Connor said he was excited to join The RSA Group. “I look forward to leveraging RSAs experience and success around the globe as we continue to build and expand the life sciences business in North America.”
New Jersey has a strong scientific economy and is home to major pharmaceutical and telecommunications companies. The state hosts several business headquarters, including 24 Fortune 500 companies.
With offices in the U.S., the U.K., Belgium, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Turkey, Singapore and China, The RSA Group is focused on the life sciences, advising on the selection, assessment and onboarding of board and senior executive talent. The firm recently had a change in leadership when Mr. Bennett assumed the CEO role, taking over from Chris Molloy, who left RSA Group to head up the U.K. Medicines Discovery Catapult.
Mr. Bennett himself enjoys a track record in senior level life sciences executive search, specializing in medical devices and diagnostics. His most recent global leadership roles have been served with the now defunct CTPartners and DHR International, where he served as managing partner for its global medical devices & diagnostics business as well as its London office.
Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media