One of our specialised medical device recruitment consultants noticed a Norwegian neuroimaging company had been advertising a sales and marketing manager role for several months. It was a small company, a spin-off of a larger company, developing medical devices used in advanced imaging processing for neurosciences.
After reaching out and speaking with their team, it was clear they needed someone who could outline and implement their commercial strategy to launch new products both in their Norway office and abroad in the US, which was their most important international market.
Ideally, the client was searching for a candidate coming from a senior level such as a manager or director with relevant experience in this field. This candidate would also need to spend 50% of their working time from the client office in the US, which made recruitment for the role more difficult. Candidates coming from senior levels often have families, children, or other responsibilities making a 50% travel position less attractive for them.
The role had been open for a year already and the more time spent before it was filled meant more delay to the company’s expansion plans and a loss of potential revenue. They were already experiencing a loss of market share by not having someone take care of their existing customers.
Given it was a new and small company with a relatively unknown brand, they had a hard time attracting candidates with enough experience. They received a handful of promising candidates from their advert and brought them to interview, but the senior candidates from large competitor companies were very expensive compared to a start-up’s budget, and others lost interest when they learned of the extensive travel to the US.
The client was also wary of using an agency to help them recruit, given their start-up style budgets, so we offered another solution: to send anonymous profiles of candidates found through proactive headhunting as a free, no-commitment service with which the company could preview the quality of our work and gain an insight into the profiles that could be provided.
It just so happened that our consultant working on this project knew of an up-and-coming salesperson in the medical device space who wanted to work with products such as the client offered and after discussing the situation with the candidate, he agreed to be presented anonymously.
Although the candidate did not meet the specific requirements the client had, the CEO agreed it was worth considering and brought them to an interview. After talking with both the candidate and our consultant, the CEO realised that they actually have the right skills and motivation to do the job, and it would only take a bit of product training before they were ready to provide value to their customers.
Even though he was less experienced than the company initially wanted, it allowed them to get the ball rolling and get revenue coming in.
In addition, the candidate was young and had no spouse or children so was not only able to easily travel to the US but was actually excited about it.
In the future, they will want to expand this sales team, but now they have the capacity to slowly look for the more senior hire they wanted or to continue to train our candidate and then build a team of juniors around him.
When they need to further expand the sales team they will reassess if they should promote my candidate and build the team around him, or resume the search for a manager.
This client now has a highly motivated sales and marketing specialist that has a strong interest in their products and plans to progress his career within their team. He will soon begin generating significant revenue for the business and contributing to expanding its products across the market.
In addition, the company also learned about the benefits of working with a specialist recruitment agency. As they continue to expand their business it will be even more crucial to fill these positions efficiently with the right candidates. They are now in regular contact with our recruiter who advises them on market changes and trends to help them plan their future recruitment needs. This relationship has led to additional candidates being successfully placed, with ongoing plans to recruit more in the near future.