Rising demand for interim executives signals shift in senior talent

Odgers Berndtson launches interim practice dedicated to temporary senior management solutions

TORONTO, Aug. 24 /CNW/ - Odgers Berndtson, Canada's largest executive search firm, is expanding the firm's global presence in interim management by establishing Odgers Interim in Canada as a practice dedicated to supporting its clients with the placement of the most talented people into senior executive positions on a temporary basis.

"The demand for interim executives has risen significantly in the last decade and represents a major shift in the way companies think about their executive-level needs," observes Jane Matthews, President of Odgers Interim.

Businesses today generally run leaner at a management level, with constant demands for the skills necessary to adapt to market shifts. A seasoned executive in place over the short term can help them navigate organizational change, address issues and challenges, fill a gap created by a retiring or absent executive, or provide senior-level expertise to lead major projects and initiatives.

The demand for interim executives is expected to grow even more, as demographic trends show one-third of today's workforce will be eligible for retirement by 2015. Many executive-level gaps in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors will be filled with interim talent. In other global markets - particularly the U.K., which is the largest market for interim services - companies now view interim work as a business solution and a sub-sector that offers a challenging and rewarding career option for experienced executives, states Carl Lovas, Chairman of Odgers Berndtson.

"There will be a very exciting transfer of knowledge happening over the next two decades," Matthews predicts. "Interim executives provide immediate, short-term management skills but in the long term they add value to our clients' businesses. They are there to imbed best practices and leave a legacy of improvement."

Interim work doesn't have the stigma that it might have had a decade ago, as more diverse, younger executives are choosing interim work as a career, Matthews says. She explains that interim executives are talented individuals who are motivated by the challenge of quickly contributing to the success of a business and then moving on to the next position. Interim executives, who come with a wide range of experiences drawn from the senior executive ranks, have often chosen to pursue this career path because of the flexibility and professional reward that it provides. And then there are interim executives that have taken advantage of early retirement opportunities, who still have the drive and desire to use their skills and experiences to make a difference.

Odgers Berndtson is the largest interim management provider in the U.K. and brings the knowledge and experience it has amassed globally to Canada. Although the company has been providing interim search expertise to its Canadian clients on an ad hoc basis for some time, the establishment of a dedicated interim management group reflects the rapidly growing market for this type of recruitment.

As part of Canada's largest executive search firm, Odgers Interim has an unrivalled network of senior executives who are committed to interim work and whose experiences cover all disciplines and a wide spectrum of businesses. The firm's reach - both nationally and globally - enables it to respond to interim executive placement needs quickly, and to ensure a match in terms of 'fit and talent'.

"We are committed to ensuring a thorough understanding of our clients, their culture and market environment, enabling us to provide interim executives who can make a difference from day one," Matthews says.

About Odgers Berndtson

Odgers Berndtson is a leading global presence in executive search, with operations in 24 countries and 50 cities worldwide. In Canada, Odgers Berndtson has grown to become the largest retained executive search firm in Canada, with offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. It serves clients in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors, and is a leader in recruiting CEOs, boards of director and C-level roles for a variety of organizations.

Its collective resources, vast experience and extensive industry knowledge enhance the firm's ability to deliver outstanding leadership talent to clients. Its consultants apply the knowledge they have gained working in a variety of sectors to generate solutions that work for clients.

SOURCE Odgers Berndtson

For further information: For further information: Jane Matthews, Odgers Interim, (416) 366-1990, jane.matthews@odgersberndtson.ca

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