Using search data as a valuable business intelligence tool

“We were looking for accurate business metrics to help us define a consistent strategy across regions. Before Invenias, we were in the dark.”

Visibility into the company’s operations is a strategic imperative for Jamie Carter. A partner at global retained executive search firm Lancor, he explains: “With offices in Europe, the US and the Middle East, we know that it is important to have a clear picture of how we are performing as a global entity, as well as on a regional basis.

“However, we lacked this visibility. We weren’t able to easily measure strategically important information, such as the number of searches completed in under 90 days, fee trends, or the percentage increase of certain positions placed over a given period.”

The database Lancor was previously using lacked the in-depth reporting capability Jamie was looking for. “I was looking for a simple way to see our key metrics set out in such a way that I can easily make connections and draw conclusions,” he says. “But we were using spreadsheet-based reporting, which was time consuming and inconsistent from office-to-office. I wanted something that provided us automated, intelligent reporting.”

The Invenias cloud-based platform offered Lancor a way forward. The firm migrated its data across in 2015. Since then, Lancor has been actively involved in the platform’s continual development, offering a customer perspective and helping Invenias to shape and test the product at different stages of its evolution.

In particular, Lancor has been instrumental in the development of Invenias Client, the application that enables digital collaboration between a firm and its clients. Jamie explains how “the Invenias Client portal allows our clients to see a search unfolding, giving them confidence in the value that Lancor brings to the search process.” Invenias Client allows Lancor to grant their clients access to select assignment information within a secure online portal that they can log in to at any time. This, alongside the ability for clients to leave feedback on candidates, makes for a more transparent and collaborative working relationship.

Jamie adds: “It removes the ‘mystery’ behind the process. Some clients are shocked by how many potential candidates we speak with to arrive at our two finalists. Knowing this background gives our clients more confidence in making their final hiring decision, understanding how thoroughly we have analysed the market.”

While Invenias was helping Lancor deliver greater transparency to their Clients, Lancor’s next area of focus was on internal reporting in order to fully understand the key metrics of their international search business. Jamie explains, “we worked with the Invenias service team to create custom reports tailored to our needs, and we are thrilled with the outcome. The Invenias team have the ability to take what a client envisions and really turn it into reality.

“The Invenias Client Portal allows clients to see a search unfolding, giving them confidence in the value that Lancor brings to the search process.”
Jamie Carter

Lancor defined twelve KPI’s most significant to their business, and these were mapped into what Jamie describes as “a partner dashboard, organized by tables and pie charts”. These attributes included current and closed searches, search completion rates, client NPS scores, average fees, new versus repeat clients, searches by industry, position and geography, revenue per client, average days to close, and more.

Jamie continues: “Suddenly, we had a snapshot of each partner’s business going back five years. It definitely took some creativity and coding expertise by Invenias to make it happen. Automated reporting at a partner, regional and global level transitioned Invenias from just a candidate database to an invaluable business intelligence tool for our firm.”

He adds that his fellow partners were excited at what they can now see. “It enabled us to start asking better questions and get fact-based answers, rather than relying on what we ‘thought’ we knew. Our ability to measure our performance at a number of different levels has enabled us to set better targets and strategically focus the firm on what we do best.”

Data is critical to the success of this reporting and all the firm’s analysts are tasked with inputting certain attributes for each search. Since this takes no more than a few minutes per search, it has quickly become embedded as a day-to-day working practice. Indeed, according to Jamie, every single analyst, associate and partner, every single day, has Invenias up and running.