Case Study: Combined Interim and Permanent CFO Search

CHALLENGE:

Our client, is an international retail and manufacturing company which also markets a wide range of ancillary interior products. The Company employs over 650 people, mainly in the UK, and has international operations in New York, Chicago, Paris and Dubai.

The organisation had recently appointed a new Group CEO which formed part of an ambitious growth plan. The new strategy included driving the existing brands, partnering with core customers, investing in people and growing key geographies – UK, Northern Europe and USA.

The current CFO had been in the role for over 5 years and the Group CEO was keen to ‘upskill’ the position and bring in a more commercially rounded finance leader to help execute the newly formed strategic plan.

SOLUTION:

After an initial briefing with the Group CEO it was clearly evident that the shareholders had already lost faith in the existing CFO and that the CEO-CFO relationship was becoming more and more untenable.

It was agreed that the best solution for the shareholders would be for the current CFO to be replaced, however the CEO was concerned that with suitable CFO’s typically on 6 months notice, it could potentially take 8-9 months for a new CFO to be properly onboarded.

We advised our client that they should run a combined Interim and Permanent process. Under NDA, we would identify a suitable Interim CFO quickly, which would then allow the CEO to reach a suitable compromise agreement with the current CFO. Once the Interim CFO was in place Norman Broadbent would then commence a thorough permanent search process.

OUTCOME:

Within 72 hours, we had provided our client with a shortlist of 3 candidates for the Interim CFO position. Due to the confidentiality of the search, all candidates were placed under NDA, and were available to start immediately. After 2 separate interviews, the preferred candidate was identified, offered and accepted the position, with a 6 month commitment on both sides.

The existing CFO agreed a compromise and was put on garden leave whilst the Interim started.

The Permanent search then commenced and 5 external candidates plus the Interim CFO were identified within 8 weeks. After 4 separate interviews and psychometric testing a permanent CFO was identified, offered and accepted.

KEY POINTS:

An International retail and manufacturing company was looking to ‘upskill’ and replace it’s existing CFO quickly to allow them to execute an ambitious growth plan.

Norman Broadbent Research & Insight team identified 3 suitable interim CFO’s within 72 hours which enabled our client to replace their existing incumbent within a week of being briefed.

This ultimately facilitated a more efficient and cost-effective permanent CFO search process, with a permanent CFO subsequently being offered within 10 weeks of the Interim CFO starting.

Jonathan Stringer | Director Interim Management jonathan.stringer@normanbroadbent.com

+44 (0) 7483 015 307

Marcus Blackburn | Director CFO Practice  marcus.blackburn@normanbroadbent.com

+44 (0) 7483 015 595

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CEO Case Study: Integrated Interim and Search Solution

Problem

The Norman Broadbent Group were tasked by the Board of a Bank to support them in replacing their CEO. Whilst the performance of the Bank had been acceptable for number of years, the Board wanted to see greater growth. As it had been rudderless for a period of time, they needed fresh leadership. Although the Bank were looking for a permanent successor, such were the regulatory problems, they decided to appoint an Interim CEO whilst the Search was underway. This situation was heavily NDA’d, and the risk to the business was likely to be significant were details to leak into the market.

Solution

After taking an extensive brief, we set to work discretely contacting our Interim CEO network. As this role was as much about tackling immediate cultural as well as banking/regulatory challenges, we had to be exceptionally diligent in ensuring we achieved the right ‘fit’. We identified three strong candidates within 72 hours, all of which were interview within days. The client identified one exceptional candidate who had further meetings with the board and Regulator under strict secrecy. The decision was made to appoint them as Interim CEO, at which point the process was triggered to exit the incumbent CEO. A day after the incumbent CEO began exit talks with the Bank, the Interim CEO was introduced ensuring continuity and as little upheaval as possible for the team.

Outcome

Once our Interim CEO was in post, the search commenced to identify a permanent CEO. Again, we were asked to work under NDA with our Interim CEO playing a key role in shaping the role profile to future proof the Bank and give the regulators renewed confidence. Following a number of interviews, a preferred candidate was identified, and discussions began around authorisation for the role. This was successful and, after nearly a year in post, the Interim handed across the reigns to the new CEO, with a month handover period to ensure a seamless transition.

Norman Broadbent was able to help this client by working discretely behind the scenes to mitigate risk, provide a highly qualified Interim who could steady the ship, begin the change process and manage any regulatory risk. All of this was achieved whilst delivering on the search to find a long-term CEO.

If you would like to confidentially discuss how The Norman Broadbent Group could help you overcome your business or people challenges, please contact, Mike Davies on 07590 244 869 or via email at mike.davies@normanbroadbent.com

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Financial Services Case Study Chief Information Security Officer

CHALLENGE:

  • Our client, a FTSE 100 International Financial Services business, was experiencing an unprecedented period of growth and change, centred around digital ways of working.
  • At the same time it had become apparent that a major overhaul was needed in the Information Security function, in order to keep up with the pace of change both inside and outside of the company.
  • Norman Broadbent were mandated to appoint a Chief Information Security Officer to lead this cultural change programme across a highly federated, multi product organisation.

SOLUTION:

  • Norman Broadbent mapped out key industries across regulated environments and identified Chief Information Security Officers that were driving, or had driven, successful technology enabled change. In addition, as functional experts in Technology Security & Digital, we were able to bolster the list with people that we knew well from our own trusted networks.
  • We were able to spread the net wide and look at multiple sectors for this role, as the client recognised that this level of change required experience from different sectors. This in turn would allow for new thinking and innovation to compliment the already existing, wealth of risk management experience within the business.
  • Comprehensive stages of assessment were applied to the selection of the short listed candidates for this role, as they are for all leadership positions. Special care was taken to find ‘board ready’ candidates that could influence at the highest levels in the simplest terms.

OUTCOME:

  • Within six weeks, we provided our client with a comprehensive short list of highly qualified and diverse candidates. Throughout the clients interview process it became clear that there were two strong contenders for the role and a decision was only made after presentations were made, to the Chairman and non-exec board.
  • This appointment was made completely out of sector but, as the candidate had operated in regulated businesses, shown aptitude for sector change in the past and had excellent influencing skills, they were the right choice. They have been in post for six months now and are achieving excellent results and high praise within the organisation.

KEY POINTS:

  • A leading Financial Services business were starting out on a major information security transformation, they required a highly experienced CISO to lead this cultural change programme.
  • Norman Broadbent carried out an exhaustive search across multiple regulated sectors in order to track down CISO’s that were capable of delivering this major initiative.
  • Rather than focus on the financial services sector, NB cast the net far and wide, looking for talent with multi sector experience. This was essential to bring a broad perspective and innovative thinking to the business.

For a confidential call to discuss how Norman Broadbent Group could help you overcome your business or people challenges please contact Neil Pilkington at neil.pilkington@normanbroadbent.com or Ross Stacey at ross.stacey@normanbroadbent.com

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Digital, Data & Analytics Case Study: Talent Pipelining & Pooling

CHALLENGE:

  • Our client, a global pharmaceutical company headquartered in London, was transitioning their global branding from being best known as a market leading pharmaceutical firm, to a company renowned for improving the lifestyle of consumers.
  • Key to this evolution was an extensive review and build out of their Digital, Data and Data Analytics function.
  • The challenge that presented them was how to attract, hire and retain the very best Digital talent, especially as many of these individuals are not easily identifiable, are increasingly in demand, and most often not from the Life Sciences sector.

SOLUTION:

Norman Broadbent implemented a three-stage process:

  • Firstly, utilising our extensive networks across all business sectors, we produced an exhaustive map of all DDA talent for our client. We also incorporated a range of innovative initiatives to connect with this community – from crowdsourcing, to attending hackathons and industry events, to managing an internal referral scheme within our own client’s workforce.
  • Secondly, in close communication with the client at all times, we refined this list to produce a second ‘longlist’ of the most relevant individuals and set up ‘scoping’ calls and meetings to discuss their propensity for a move, openness to a sector change, push and pull factors with current company/role, and what the remuneration package would need to look like to make a move attractive and viable.
  • We also gained insight on a range of broader topics, such as the market for DDA talent, skill shortages for up-coming projects, and, without disclosing the name of our client, we conducting a brief perception analysis via covert questions on a range of companies including, but not restricted to, our client.
  • Finally, and again in close agreement with our client, we began the process of pipelining, in stages, groups of DDA executives for informal meetings on a rotating monthly basis.

OUTCOME:

  • Over a process of twelve months, we provided our client with a sustainable and consistent pipeline of talent that they could engage with and ultimately hire. This resulted in 23 hires across their Digital function in this time frame.
  • We also provided a comprehensive and continuously evolving document, including details on projects they were engaged on, market insights and business intelligence. This report gave our client knowledge of where available talent was, the type of proposition they would need in place to attract it, and how they would need to motivate and engage these individuals to retain them for as long as possible within a fiercely competitive recruitment market.

KEY POINTS:

  • A global pharmaceutical company sought critical support to hire multiple Digital, Data & Analytics Executives to build a market leading DDA team.
  • Norman Broadbent’s Research & Insight practice identified over 1,000 individuals to produce an exhaustive longlist to work from. We set up client interviews with 265 of the very best and most relevant individuals from this initial research.
  • Simultaneously, we also produced a highly detailed insight report for our client, providing market intelligence on all emerging trends within the DDA market across all business sectors.
  • A focussed perception analysis report of our client’s brand was also produced without compromise at any stage.
  • Our client was able to hire 23 executives from a diverse pool of candidates, in turn building a world class Digital, Data & Analytics function.
  • Our client also received significant data and intelligence on how best to engage and retain these individuals against unprecedented competition from rival companies, both in and outside of the sector.

For a confidential call to discuss how Norman Broadbent Group could help you overcome your business or people challenges please contact Andrew Smith on 07841 862 912 or via email at andrew.smith@normanbroadbent.com

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Case Study: Interim CIO, Industry Sector: Private Equity

Our CIO Interim Practice supports Organisations and Boards experiencing change and transformation, gap management challenges, and pressure points. A confidential service built on over 40 years of experience, our networks of Interim Executives allow us to introduce trusted senior Interim Managers within days so that business momentum is not lost.

Problem

Norman Broadbent Interim Management were asked to support the COO of a leading European mid-market Private Equity firm. ‘Top 5’ in its field, they needed to find a senior Interim Head of Technology to initially work alongside, then take over from the CIO. The were a number of immediate issues to deal with, but primarily the management had lost confidence that Technology could deliver to the organisation. This meant more management time was being spent addressing shortfalls, downtime and other issues, while limiting strategic development. In addition, the board wanted an IT leader who could not only “get it done”, but also one that could contribute to Portfolio activities as well. The Board were keen for us to support the COO and provide a ‘C’ level Interim Manager who would right the ship, get technology working again and start a review , rebuilding confidence throughout the organisation.

Solution

We arranged to meet the clients in their London Offices, and took an in-depth brief. Given the sensitivity of the role, the client also asked us to work under NDA. We started to immediately to engage with the Norman Broadbent network, and set about meeting and briefing relevant Interim Managers, all under NDA. Within 72 hours were able to submit four qualified, available and referenced candidates to the client. The top three were interviewed, and two candidates went through to a final meeting with a New York based board member. Feedback from this was both were appointable, so when the first candidate pulled out at point of offer, we had a very strong fall back candidate who accepted the role.

Outcome

The client appointed our Head of Technology within a week of our first conversation, and he started the following week. Immediately, the Interim Manager was able to identify key issues in service delivery, and remedy them to the delight of the stakeholders. Furthermore, he began rebuilding the trust that had broken down, utilising this when he stepped into the CIO role. He also began to put in place a new strategy, including an enterprise cloud migration, allowing this truly global firm to work seamlessly 24/7 from any office. In addition to all the core challenges, he was also asked by the firm to support with due diligence on future acquisitions, as well as supporting and advising the leadership of existing portfolio companies. The firm were delighted, renewing him a number of times, and he was described by one ExCo board member as “simply a gamechanger”!

For a confidential call to discuss how Norman Broadbent Group could help you overcome your business or people challenges please contact Mike Davies on 07411 686616 or via email at mike.davies@normanbroadbent.com

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Case Study: Interim H&S, Getting back to work, safely

Health & Safety Covid Case Study:

Interim Occupational H&S Consultant

KEY POINTS:

  • Our client had an urgent need to conduct a fast and extensive review of their Occupational Health and Safety plans specifically relating to re-opening a key site post Covid-19 lockdown.
  • 27 independent interims were identified and approached. Our focus was on candidates with significant previous  experience in successfully delivering independent reviews within Manufacturing businesses.
  • The candidates were shortlisted within 72 hours of briefing. Our Client was  delighted with the speed, professionalism and  thoroughness of our process.

CHALLENGE:

  • Our Client, a leading British automotive manufacturer and luxury brand, is preparing to reopen a key site to commence work quickly (and safely) once the Covid-19 lockdown is relaxed.
  • To ensure their existing H&S team’s planning and procedures are robust and optimum, they urgently needed to conduct an independent review of all aspects of Occupational Health & Safety.
  • To achieve their H&S objectives, they had two choices. Either engage an expensive H&S lawyer or bring in a dedicated expert on an interim contact experienced in both legal aspects and additional business needs to review the current structure and advise on improvements. Having consulted us about available talent, they chose the latter option.

SOLUTION:

  • Once instructed, we quickly set about identifying candidates with previous experience in successfully delivering these type of extensive site reviews within similar manufacturing environments.
  • 27 Interim consultants were identified and approached. They were then filtered further, and a shortlist of suitable candidates shared with the client.
  • During a further review with the Client, we went through the relevant experience and suitability of each candidate in detail. During this review, three candidates were selected for interview.

OUTCOME:

  • The candidates were shortlisted within 72 hours of briefing, with the entire process taking seven days. The successful candidate had operated at the highest level in this field, recently working with the government as one of their chief advisors. They also had significant relevant experience within the manufacturing sector.
  • Our Client was delighted with the speed, professionalism, and thoroughness of our process. Most importantly, they were very impressed with the quality of candidates. Their chosen candidate delivered above and beyond the Client’s expectations.
  • The use of an Interim not only gave our Client an independent viewpoint, but also brought some innovative solutions to the assignment in a cost-effective, time-efficient manner.

If you would like to confidentially discuss how The Norman Broadbent Group  could help you overcome your business or people challenges,  please contact, Nick Behan, on 07748 760 937 or via nick.behan@normanbroadbentinterim.com

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