Second quarter global executive search industry data highlights even greater focus on the highest management positions.

Second quarter executive search industry statistics, just released by the Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC), highlight an increase in the value of recruiting assignments against a reduction in volume.
Worldwide executive search industry revenues and the average fee per assignment rose by almost seven percent each in the second quarter of 2013 over the same period a year ago, while the number of new search mandates fell 11.5 percent year-on-year (from Q2 2012 to Q2 2013). This trend of increased assignment value yet decreased assignment volume indicates an executive search industry focused on recruiting for the most senior management positions and providing highly skilled leadership consulting services.
AESC President, Peter Felix, commented: “The second quarter results are a powerful indicator of what we have been observing for the past several years, i.e. retained executive search is moving increasingly upmarket and away from more volume based middle market recruiting where in-house and other forms of selection are making inroads by employing social media. Despite loss of volume in search assignment starts, the average fee revenue per assignment has seen a healthy increase. It is also encouraging to see the first indication of new growth in the emerging markets and also in the financial services sector, which has been moribund since the financial crisis”.
The second quarter of 2013 saw all major regions surveyed – North America, EMEA, Asia Pacific and Central/South America - experience yearly declines in search activity from Q2 2012 to Q2 2013. The quarter-on-quarter picture - from Q1 2013 to Q2 2013 – saw an uptick in search activity for Asia Pacific and Central/South America, while EMEA remained flat and North America declined in its number of new executive search mandates.
The sector results saw yearly and quarterly declines for almost all industries surveyed - Industrial, Technology, Financial, Consumer, Life Sciences/Healthcare and Non-Profit - with the exception of a seven percent quarterly rise in search activity for Financial, from Q1 2013 to Q2 2013.
A full copy of the AESC’s Q2 2013 State of the Executive Search Industry Report is available upon request to AESC members, BlueSteps members and the press.
About the Quarterly State of the Industry Report
The AESC State of the Executive Search Industry Report is quarterly research carried out by the Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC) since 2004 on trends in the global retained executive search and leadership consulting industry.  Data for the report is collected from a consistent sample of AESC mem­ber search firms representing the activity of 1,430 executive search consultants in 46 countries worldwide.  AESC access to retained executive search data positions this report as a leading indicator of the future worldwide management employment market and a barometer of hiring trends for top-level and seldom advertised positions in key market sectors.
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About the Association of Executive Search Consultants
The Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC) is the worldwide professional association for the retained executive search and leadership consulting industry. The AESC promotes the highest professional standards in retained executive search and leadership consulting through its industry recognized Code of Ethics and Professional Practice Guidelines. The AESC also serves to broaden public understanding of the retained executive search and leadership consulting process and acts as an advocate for the interests of its member firms.
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