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CXO search activity is harbinger of more hiring to come

Sep 14, 20042 mins
Data Center

* Report results from the Association of Executive Search Consultants

A recent uptick in the executive search business foreshadows a surge in post-election hiring, according to a report from the Association of Executive Search Consultants.

Executive search firm revenue grew 14% in the second quarter of 2004, as found by the professional association’s August survey of more than 1,200 executive search consultants. These newly placed corporate leaders in turn likely helped drive creation of the 548,000 jobs that have been added since May, the AESC says. As other evidence of improved hiring, the U.S. Department of Labor recently announced that 144,000 jobs were created in August.

“Executive search is a leading indicator four months out of where the overall job market is headed,” says Peter Felix, president of the AESC. “AESC’s latest analysis shows that the robust increase in executive search industry revenue during the second quarter of 2004 will translate to overall increased hiring after the U.S. presidential election.”

Felix notes that once an executive comes on board, it takes another 90 days for that person to affect the company’s hiring at lower levels.

Another highlight of the AESC’s study is that executive hiring is on the rebound in the long-suffering technology and financial services industries. Executive search activity in the tech sector increased 5% from the first to second quarter of 2004, according to the research.

“Optimism in our industry is once again high with demand for executive search consulting coming back to the post-recession levels of 1998-99,” Felix says.

For more information, go to the AESC’s site at