Fraser Dove International allied with a preeminent biotechnology organisation who deliver treatments and cures across a broad range of therapeutic areas including metabolic and central nervous system disorders, viral infections and inflammatory diseases. Their products prolong and improve the quality of life for patients across the globe.
Our client required a Global Head of Operation Strategy to implement and deliver strategic transformation across their Technical Operations. This mission-critical hire would translate the vision from Senior Leadership into an actionable strategy, liaising with key stakeholders across the business to ensure its timely conclusion. The transformation will unlock efficiency improvements across the business and free up resources to develop new pioneering treatments.
Delivering this transformation would require an extraordinary calibre of person; a cross-functional leader with demonstrated ability to advance strategic change in a manufacturing operations environment; a division which was global in scope and comprised thousands of personal. This was to be one of the most ambitious transformations in our client’s history.
This would be a challenging search based on these criteria alone, but our client had ambitious diversity criteria to meet. They sought a broad demographic in a talent pool numbering tens, not hundreds, of individuals. That is why they turned to Fraser Dove to help them find, engage and secure high-impact Technical Operations talent.
Solution: Primary Search
Our Primary Search solution is an exclusive retained search for specialist and niche senior hires. It combines traditional executive search and recruitment techniques – headhunting, networking and talent mapping – with next-generation search tools, targeted advertising campaigns and expertise in social media networking to supplement our extensive network of manufacturing talent.
Our executive search and recruitment workflow consists of three distinct phases:
1) Discovery Briefing:
Before we undertake any search, we need a comprehensive understanding of our client’s need. Why are they hiring? What does success look like on search completion, and three, six and twelve months after their new hire is in post? What is their vision, mission, values? The discovery briefing ensures we have established the candidate persona(s) and fully understand our client’s employee value proposition (EVP), allowing us to take their employer brand to market.
The output of the discovery briefing – the Search Matrix – is a document outlining the skills, experience and competencies essential for success in the role. Signed off by key hiring stakeholders prior to search commencement, it is used in conjunction with the performance job description to qualify candidates for cultural and technical fit.
On that note, the prerequisites for the Global Head of Operation Strategy were:
- Demonstrated ability to analyse and advance strategic change.
- High level of cross-functional leadership experience
- Stakeholder engagement and negotiation.
2) Talent Mapping:
Fraser Dove’s in-house Research Function engaged in a talent mapping exercise to develop a robust talent pool of life science professionals with experience in Operations transformation within the biopharmaceutical space. Though the search was international in scope, six countries were the subject of their own mapping exercises: Belgium, France, Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland and the USA.
Talent mapping reduces lead times, providing an initial ‘focus’ for the search while ensuring its geographic scope is sufficient to headhunt high-impact talent. During this process, we ‘warm-up’ prospective talent, gauging their appetite for the opportunity without the risk of divulging our client’s identity. This enables our Global Executive Research Managers to not only hone their pitch but feedback to the client about any reservations candidates might have about the opportunity.
3) Qualify & Influence
Following the talent mapping exercise, Fraser Dove advised our clients on the demographic breakdown of available talent as well as average salary, years in service and the companies where they currently resided. The Assignment Lead – Luke Brown – in conjunction with the Research team, then conducted a competency and technical based qualification assessment to match candidates against the criteria outlined in the Search Matrix. We delivered a shortlist of seven candidate profiles with the desired experience, skills and competencies within three weeks, all of whom were invited to first-stage interview.
With the shortlist presented, the real activity began. Fraser Dove managed the entire candidate journey on our client’s behalf from scheduling interviews to post-interview feedback and offer negotiation. This means liaising with candidates and hiring authorities at every step of the hiring process, from prepping candidates ahead of interview and arranging travel, to disseminating post-interview feedback, and helping our client raise and deliver an offer that meets candidate expectations.
The Assignment Lead – Luke Brown – provided guidance to candidate and hiring stakeholders throughout the hiring process. He was praised by both client and candidates for his responsiveness, being on hand to answer questions and advice despite differing time zones. This culminated in an offer being raised and candidate accepting within eight weeks of the searches commencement.
The successful candidate had the right combination of relevant experience, communication and leadership capabilities as well as excellent subject matter expertise. What really impressed the client though was her grasp and appreciation of their business, her communication prowess and appetite for growth and development.
The appointment of the Global Head of Operation Strategy will enable our client to plan and deliver efficiency improvement across Technical Operations over the course of the next five years. This will ensure our client remains at the forefront of the life science industry and can broaden its product portfolio, impacting patient lives the world over.