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Boyden Executive Outlook Finds Retention Of Best C-level And Senior Executives A Priority

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Boyden reveals industrial/energy, e-commerce and technology, and emerging markets opportunities are fueling biggest demands for senior management



Financial Services
“We’re seeing a pickup of selective hiring in financial services in the second quarter after a slow start at the beginning of the year,” said Jeanne Branthover, Leader of Boyden’s Global Financial Services Practice and Managing Director at Boyden New York. “As firms complete their restructuring, companies are assessing everyone’s skill sets with the new structure and placing the right executives in the right jobs. This is going to create big opportunities for people with the skill sets needed to succeed in the new structure.”

Retail banking, fin tech, wealth management, risk & compliance and research are among the areas of more active recruitment.  In addition, the emerging markets, particularly Russia, China, Asia and Latin America, will continue to be a focus for growth in 2012.

In Canada, senior level technology executives are in demand at financial institutions, according to Janice Detta Colli, Managing Director at Boyden Toronto.

“The greatest demand is for risk management and treasury management in Europe,” said Andreas Landgrebe, Managing Director of Boyden Austria and CEE. “International banks need talent to move difficult assets off their balance sheets, define their workout portfolios and develop consistent strategies for executing them.”

In the Middle East, companies are aware of the oversupply of financial services talent in Europe and are keeping costs down accordingly. Thus, pressure on compensation and allowances will continue as long as the economic recovery is anemic, noted Magdy El Zein, Managing Director of Boyden Middle East.

In Australia, bonuses are down and redundancies continue. On the upside, while overall activity is lower, demand remains for quality sales executives in the equity capital markets and debt capital market segments, according to Peter Dale, an Executive Director of Boyden Australia.

Industrial/Energy/Mining
“Many industrial and energy companies are dealing with serious succession issues in the C-suite and with senior roles at a critical time of company growth or, in some cases, even with the stakes of survival,” said Robert Travis, a Boyden Board Member and Managing Director of Boyden Canada. “There’s a dearth of executives who bring technical or engineering expertise combined with great leadership qualities.”

As a result, in some cases, salaries are rising for retention. In addition, retired executives and consultants are being engaged to fulfill shorter term needs. COOs, Senior VPs of Operations and related roles are also in strong demand where executives bring both technical and management expertise.

“Unconventional gas is fueling a very positive cycle in energy and executive recruitment,” said Jim Hertlein, a Boyden Board Member and Managing Director of Boyden Houston. “Expertise in ‘unconventional plays’ only exist in the US and markets such as Australia and Eastern Europe are moving to develop it, creating a notable gap in available talent.”

In Europe, company restructurings are ramping up the need for top talent at the C-level, according to         Armin Meier, Leader of Boyden’s Global Industrial Practice and Managing Director of Boyden Switzerland.   “Our clients are seeking leaders who can manage through difficult times and have already been through a fair number of restructurings,” he added.

In addition, across the Middle East and developing markets, companies are seeking competent and experienced executives who are also comfortable managing risk, according to Toby Lapage-Norris, a Partner of Boyden UK. Cultural and relationship management are at a premium.

“The best industrial executives based in the emerging markets share a common denominator,” said Mr. Lapage-Norris. “They bring both commercial and financial backgrounds as well as strong relationship building skills.”

In Latin America, the building of power and chemical plants, mining and salt water desalination facilities, and other major infrastructure is driving a need for chief financial officers, project engineers, project managers, senior geologists and supply chain managers, according to John Byrne, Managing Director of Boyden Chile.  

“Many companies in the industrial sector have resumed searches in the second quarter following the conclusion of annual sales conventions early in the year,” said Aurea Imai, a Managing Director at Boyden São Paulo.  “There’s also increased movement from Japanese companies to hire local talent in Brazil to grow their business.”

Most of China’s industrial multinational clients are also seeking succession plans for C-level leadership and local expats are being sought after as the main talent pool to replace these positions, according to Helen Xia, a Managing Director of Boyden Beijing. In addition, top state-owned enterprises are increasing M&A activity in Europe and America, thus creating demand for top management positions and generous compensation levels.

In Australia, an unabated demand for talent in the mining sector is having a flow effect on the construction industry, where there is a lack of available managers on the eastern seaboard. Thus, compensation in mining has continued to rise, according to Michael Catlow, Managing Director of Boyden Australia.

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