Q2 2015 State of the Industry Report

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Second quarter trends indicate that the executive search and leadership consulting profession continues its growth, with an uptick in revenue (2.1% quarter-on-quarter) and the number of new assignments (2.2% quarter-on-quarter).  

The Q2 State of the Executive Search Industry report indicates a quarter-on-quarter and year-on-year rise in the number of new assignments in the life sciences / healthcare sector of 27.3% and 18.5% respectively. Similarly, the financial services sector recorded quarter-on-quarter growth of 15.3% and year-on-year growth of 10.9%.

According to our statistics, 2014 was the largest year for the executive search and leadership consulting profession. Following continued growth by the profession in the first two quarters of the year (Q1: 3.9%; Q2: 2.1%), we estimate that the profession is currently at its largest point in history.

Karen Greenbaum, AESC President and CEO, said: “There is no doubt about it.  Executive search consulting services continue to be highly valued by clients around the world as our members work in partnership with their clients to ensure that the best talent is placed in key executive positions, aligned with business strategies for growth. Our profession has always focused on meeting the most challenging talent needs of clients.  The evolution of both executive search consulting and newer services around leadership consulting and the continued growth of our business is a reflection of this strong client-centric focus. As I travel around the world meeting AESC members, it is clear to me that AESC members represent the best-in-class in our profession and are committed to the highest professional standards.

“In terms of growth by industry/sector, Industrial remains the most significant area, financial services comes in second and consumer comes in third. The life sciences/healthcare sector has recorded a notably strong quarter, surpassing technology for the first time as the fourth largest sector for our profession.  However, one quarter does not make a trend, so we will watch eagerly over the coming months to see how these two sectors perform.

“In terms of geographic growth, three of the four major regions witnessed an increase in the number of assignments started, both quarter-on-quarter and year-on year – North America (4.1%, 6.3%), Asia Pacific (2.8%, 2.9%) and EMEA (2.2%, 2.25). All three of these regions have recorded steady growth over several consecutive quarters.

”The only region not to record growth is Latin America, which decreased 13.4% quarter-on-quarter and 7% year-on-year. Latin America had been tracking with the other three regions so we will watch closely.  Again, one quarter does not a trend make and so we are hopeful that business in Latin America strengthens over the next few quarters.”

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