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Accreate is the Executive Search division of the Morgan McKinley Group and is the only Irish executive search firm with extensive international reach through our global office network. Accreate works with organisations on a retained and exclusive basis to find the best talent for critical and transformational leadership roles at board and head of functions level, as well as for non-executive directors. Indeed, in 2015 our focus moved up the value chain with more moves at Senior Vice President and C-suite level.

As executive level talent is overwhelmingly “passive”, i.e. not currently looking for a new role. We have typically learned about them through research or referral and reach out to them and build a relationship before an opportunity arises. Accreate is highly active on the international level and as well as placing senior executives in Ireland, over the past 12 months we secured highly sought-after individuals for appointments in countries such as the USA, the Nordics, the United Kingdom and China.

We have been particularly excited by the number of unsolicited enquiries from companies based in the United States seeking to locate high-calibre talent in Ireland. In 2015, 40% of the senior appointments we handled involved an international relocation on the part of the hired executive. International travel has become a central requirement for the execution of any senior role and this trend will continue.

Growing economic confidence, greater willingness of larger SME companies to invest in new talent, increased foreign direct investment and Ireland’s current attractiveness as a country in which to take a job (or to return to) have all contributed to a very buoyant level of activity for executive search in 2015, and our focus on the most senior-level appointments. Interest has been especially strong in the IT, food, pharmaceutical and financial services sectors.
In the current economic climate we have also observed a much greater willingness of larger companies to invest more both in terms of recruiting and retaining top talent. Senior executives are more confident than ever about their worth and expect to be rewarded accordingly. In order to eliminate any surprise counter-offers, Accreate works hard to brief clients on candidates’ current package and motivations – and with a great deal of success. It is exceedingly rare that an appointment process is disrupted by a buy-back situation or other factors such as domestic life.

At CxO level we saw a significant uplift in salaries in 2015. At the levels below the C suite (Senior Director, Director or head of function) salaries did not rise to quite the same degree, with the exception of heads of Risk, Regulatory and Compliance functions where we also saw significant increases. This reflects the situational change that we have seen over the past few years, with tightened regulatory environments on the back of scandals and losses, particularly in the financial services sector.

Candidates at the most senior levels of management are generally not actively looking for a new role, and for a good reason: they are highly sought after and precisely because they are hard to get, they will be well rewarded. However, visibility through LinkedIn, editorial content and participation as speakers at sector-specific and senior management networking events can enhance their marketability still further.

Hiring senior executives involves some hard thinking and tough decision processes. However, organisations need to act fast to avoid missing out. In 2015 we were particularly impressed at the speed with which FDI clients, especially from the United States, made hiring decisions once they had locked into the right candidate. Indigenous companies, especially the larger SMEs, need to be aware of this for fear of missing out on top talent.

Role Ireland
CEO 160,000 - 300,000
COO 140,000 - 260,000
Head of Risk & Compliance 160,000 - 230,000
VP/Operations Director 140,000 - 220,000
VP/Manufacturing Director 130,000 - 190,000
Treasury Director 130,000 - 200,000
VP/Engineering Director 120,000 - 170,000
Business Development Director 120,000 - 150,000
Head of Audit 120,000 - 160,000
VP/Supply Chain Director 110,000 - 140,000
Chief Technical Officer 110,000 - 180,000
Chief Financial Officer 100,000 - 180,000
VP/Sales Director 90,000 - 140,000
VP/HR Director 90,000 - 150,000
Articles by Lorraine Bolger