Posted on: 3/1/2023

Great Expectations

How SRI is adapting to meet clients’ needs


Despite being in the early days of 2023, it is clear this year will be a lot tougher for recruitment businesses.

Many firms coasted last year, posting record profits without too much out of the box thinking or effort.

The combination of economic uncertainty and nearly record-low unemployment presents an interesting tightrope for companies to walk, and this precarious position is impacting the search business. Post-Covid we saw many businesses rehiring and restructuring their operations in a short space of time, and now it seems they want to see how that plays out before making more changes. And while candidate shortage abounds, many companies are being tasked to do ‘more with less’ while they rework their strategy to achieve business goals.

Only a few months ago our CEO wrote about ‘how to win the war for talent’. The first point centred on securing a competitive advantage (where we would unsurprisingly suggest utilsing the power of executive search), and the second point suggesting companies should fortify from the inside by developing a modern in-house people function to further attract, retain, and develop staff.

On the first point, while we still believe using executive search services is the way to secure a competitive advantage, the economic climate and tension around whether or not to hire (and how to find top talent in this time of candidate shortage) make it critical that search firms prove their value to clients.

We expect to see a gradual move away from one-off recruitment processes to working toward longer-term partnerships. We believe our clients wish to partner with those who know their business(s) inside out and back-to-front. They want to work with firms who can do a lot more than just sell an opportunity on their behalf and access a wide talent pool.

Thankfully, here at SRI, we have spent the last 20 years building a global team to serve this type of relationship. We have grown organically and added complimentary practice areas which serve the converging industries of sport, media, education, entertainment, platforms, gaming, technology, fashion & sporting goods, consumer/retail, and hospitality. We have built partner-led teams in key geographical hubs who thrive when working with their international colleagues on cross-border projects.

To collaborate in its truest sense, firms need to foster a convivial, low ego, non-greed mentality, which emphasizes client outcome as opposed to individual agendas. I’m pleased to say that ‘collaboration’ is one of SRI’s core values, and one we adopt at every turn. For clients, this collaboration means access to better and broader candidate pools, bringing diversity of thought and experience to their businesses.

SRI also boasts a consulting practice, which is key to getting under the skin of organisations and helping our clients achieve their longer-term goals. We focus on working with our clients to drive people, team, an organisation performance. This approach supports clients in bringing new business and leadership capabilities into their organisation. It delivers better placements (fit, tenure, success and the value the candidates create in our clients’ businesses), elevates the client and candidate experience, and moves away from the (transactional) ‘candidate find’ focus to being a trusted partner and advisor.

With a firm belief that people are at the heart of performance, we are striving to serve our clients better, and securing the best talent is just a first step for us.

Just like our clients, we won’t sit on our laurels. We want to continually improve and evolve.

Everyone loves an acronym and we are no different. For us – SRI stands for Service, Rigour and Insight, and we take this to each and every client and candidate interaction.

Great expectations? Bring them on!

Need to attract, retain & develop  top talent? We’re here to help. Learn more about our Executive Search and Talent Consulting services or email me personally at


Oliver Krendel