Top 14 Executive Search Firms in India

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Top Executive Search Firms in IndiaThe one ritualistic phenomenon undertaken by every other company under the sun is that of recruiting the right candidate for the job. Meticulously structured protocols are laid down, resources are gathered and online portals are scavenged for the perfect fit. Basically, the HR executive’s life goes for a toss every time a new recruit is desired. Recruiting, staffing and training are no less of a Herculean task! Amidst all other operations and deadlines within the company, these tasks can be easily overlooked or done shabbily. Solution to this? The advent of executive search firms, a third-party, dedicated and time-efficient answer to your recruitment and staffing endeavors; tailor-made to your needs.
Top executive search firms function by helping companies not only with their recruitment needs but also training of professionals and other personnel induction programs. Similar to one of our previous articles about top HR companies in India, we have yet another exclusive list.

With that background, here’s a list of the top 14 executive search firms (in alphabetical order):

1) ABC Consultants

ABC ConsultantsKey People:
B P Agrawal – Chairman
Shiv Agrawal – MD
Founded: 1969

With a tagline that says, “A million results are useless unless you find the One that makes your search worthwhile”, ABC Consultants have been building careers and organizations for over 40 years. They have three sister concerns namely HeadCount, FlexAbility and HeadHonchos, each recruiting across different business verticals. ABC Consultants proved their executive search prowess by stepping out of their comfort zone when an upcoming music producer needed a marketing head to carry out networking. Although the said profile was way out of their usual operations, ABC took the challenge head on.

2) Accord India

Accord IndiaKey People:
Sonal Agrawal – Managing Partner, India
Founded: N/A

A boutique retained executive search firm, Accord specializes in CXO and specialist searches. The exec search firm is also AESC certified. It has operations in Bombay, Delhi and Bangalore with services ranging from diversity searches, forensic due diligence, career transition services and market mapping services.

3) Anzy Careers

AnzyKey People:
Deepak Singh – Founder
Founded: 2010

A rather new player in the field, Anzy Careers is an HR consulting firm with a major focus on IT and Technology startups. They specialize in exec search, leadership search and resource process outsourcing. This executive search firm helped build teams for high-end technology startups like Flipkart, Myntra, InMobi, Vdopia, etc.

4) Cornerstone International Group

Cornerstone International GroupKey People:
Simon Wan – Chairman
Vijay Karkare – Chair of North & South Asia
Founded: 1989

Claiming to be made up of the ‘crème de la crème’ from premier consulting firms, Cornerstone International Group has strategically placed its offices in major continents viz. Asia-Pacific, USA, Canada, Europe/MEA and Latin America. It offers three business models: multi-office search, boutique search and consortium (network) search of boutique firms wherein, the consortium approach gives the best of both worlds. Cornerstone is also a member of the Association of Executive Search and Leadership Consultants (AESC).

5) Egon Zehnder

Egon ZehnderKey People:
Rajeev Vasudeva – CEO
Damien O’Brien – Chairman
Founded: 1964

‘Placing the interests of their clients first and leading the profession in creating value for them’, Egon Zehnder is a privately held executive search and talent management consultancy. It spans across 41 countries and boasts of about 400 consultants in 69 offices. Their specialties include senior-level executive search, CEO succession, board search and advisory, family business advisory and leadership assessment. Their client base ranges from the world’s largest corporations to the just emerging companies along with government and regulatory bodies, and educational and cultural organizations. Egon Zehnder expands its expertise and knowledge about the industry with the aid of its renowned leadership magazine, ‘The Focus’ which keeps a tab on recent developments in the field of leadership and other global issues.

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6) Executive Access

Executive AccessKey People:
Arthur Leonard Robert – Chairman
Ronesh Puri – MD
Founded: 1988

Forming their clients and candidates as a locus of attention, Executive Access has a strong bias for performance and impact. They could well be the game changers and for good reasons:
– Accountability Measure: This protocol halts fees up until six months after placing a candidate and is entitled only after the client is satisfied with the new recruit.
– Post Closure Engagement and Risk Sharing: In this measure, contract terms are valid for up to three years from the date of joining.
– EARG: In an effort to drive well-researched searches, Executive Access has a dedicated group of specialized researchers.

7) Heidrick & Struggles

Heidrick & StrugglesKey People:
Tracy Wolstencroft – CEO
Arun Das Mahapatra – Chairman, India
Puneet Pratap Singh – Partner-in-charge, India
Founded: 1953

With operation centers spanning across North America, Latin America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia Pacific, Heidrick & Struggles is the world’s second largest executive search firm by revenue as of 2011. A recent assignment (which involved finding top business executives, best suited to support a firm through tough times) was fulfilled by Heidrick & Struggles with utmost finesse and remarkable perseverance.

8) IKYA Group

IKYA GroupKey People:
Guruprasad Srinivasan – CEO
Lohit Bhatia – Director Staffing
Sachin Vohra – Director Recruitment
Founded: 2007

Now known as Quess Corp, IKYA is the largest and fastest growing business group in India and has presence in over 5000 locations. It offers staffing and executive search services across numerous verticals. Further expanding its operations, the firm is now aiming to acquire two US-based IT companies which are projected to have estimated revenues of about USD 50 million.

9) Korn Ferry

Korn FerryKey People:
Gary Burnison – CEO
Robert Rozek – CFO
Founded: 1969

Korn Ferry is an executive search firm which operates through 78 offices in over 37 countries and has a team of approximately 3,900 employees. In 2014, Korn Ferry was ranked No.1 Global Executive Recruitment firm by Hunt Scanion Media. Korn Ferry has three business lines viz. Executive Search, Leadership and Talent Consulting and Futurestep. In every 3.5 minutes, they place a professional in a new job.

10) Michael Page

Michael PageKey People:
Stephen Ingham – CEO
Founded: 1976

Being one of the 3 operational brands viz. Page Executive and Page Personnel, Michael Page falls under the umbrella of the Page Group. They provide permanent, contract and temporary recruitment for clerical, executive and qualified professionals across various disciplines. One noteworthy feature offered by this top executive search firm in India is their proprietary self-assessment tool – Leadership Signature, which claims to offer a differentiated approach to executive search.

11) RGF Executive Search

RGF Executive SearchKey People:
R Suresh – MD
Jayaprakash GC – Executive Director
Founded: 2009

Falling under the umbrella of the mighty Japanese group – Recruit Holdings, RGF Executive Search is the largest executive search platform in Asia and is expanding its operations throughout the nation gradually. A stepping stone for RGF in India was it acquisition of Stanton Chase’s Indian operations and also Nugrid Consulting which will further tighten its grip over the Indian HR business.

12) Russell Reynolds Associates

Russell Reynolds AssociatesKey People:
Clarke Murphy – CEO
Sachin Rajan – Consultant
Puneet Kalra – Technology Head India
Founded: 1969

One word for Russell Associates? No, they give you 5:
– Curious & collaborative: Inquisitiveness being key, they prefer crafting solutions tailor-made for their clients and leave no stone unturned.
– Genuine & straightforward: It’s the real deal or no deal. They are big on trust and respect.
– Nimble & creative: They are agile and following protocols only comes second to their clients’ needs.
– Right team for the job: They boast of a global research team with over 370+ consultants ready to aid you with every query.
– Insights: They are experts in their field with over 3500 engagements annually. They offer in-depth insights and have a bird’s eye view on what’s the next big thing.

13) Spencer Stuart

Spencer StaurtKey People:
Kevin Connelly – CEO
Rohit Kale – Business Head India
Founded: 1956

They have over 56 offices in 30 countries and advisors spread worldwide. Spencer Stuart is a privately held executive search firm which provides its clients with counseling and guidance for their senior leadership needs as well as other advisory services and assessments. They have a rich client base inclusive of the who’s who in the industry as well as mid-sized businesses.

14) Stanton Chase

Stanton ChaseKey People:
Mickey Matthews – Managing Director
Ivo A. Hahn – Regional VP, Asia-Pacific
Founded: 1990

A corporate fact sheet that boasts of operations in 9 countries, 72 offices backed by 350 consultants and 9 global practice groups, Stanton Chase is a renowned executive search firm with over thousands of satisfied customers. It proved its mettle by bagging the position of a top global search firm as ‘Innovator for Diversity Recruitment’.

Since our induction in 2010, sumHR has closely worked with many companies and HR professionals thus gaining an immense wealth of knowledge on the nitty-gritties of the HR fraternity.

If your company is looking for a hassle-free and efficient structure to keep your HR and payroll accurate, let us help you with the right HR software. It’s what we do best! Because a wrong one might just wreck it to shambles!

If you’d wish for this list of top executive search firms to be more comprehensive, let us know in the comments section below.

Disclaimer: This list has been compiled as per our research tools and there was no third party involvement. It should be taken as a mere guideline only.

If you are a recruiter looking for an awesome job, then head to SutraHR – one of the best HR companies in India.

One response on “Top 14 Executive Search Firms in India

  1. sudheendra says:

    would really like to understand the basis on which these ratings have been done

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