CONSUMER DURABLES MARKETING

Madison MacArthur Executive Search - Consumer Durables Marketing Assignments

Search
Director, Purchasing for the Canadian Operation

Organization
International Durable Goods Marketing Company

Situation
This tier 1 marketing company was looking for a Director of Purchasing for their Canadian division. The incumbent had been promoted to General Manager in a wholly owned subsidiary. Another search firm had suggested the President use Madison MacArthur, as this search was in an area in which they were not experienced.

Assessment
This role required an experienced purchasing specialist comfortable with working in a fast paced environment as part of a lean senior management team. The individual would be conditioned to negotiate both long-term sourcing contracts and making opportune purchases on the "spot" markets for electronic components and related accessories in all world markets. Improving the professionalism of the purchasing team and creating consensus building relationships with all purchasing managers from all worldwide subsidiaries would also be priorities. This person would work closely with all senior management including the President, to ensure their products and services are delivered to each client on time as contracted.

Challenge
Many purchasing professionals working in large manufacturing environments are conditioned to working in process-oriented, highly-structured, politically-charged landscapes. Change is normally slow and decisions are difficult to expedite. Purchasing professionals in smaller entrepreneurial firms work in generally unstructured, sometimes chaotic environments. Finding candidates with the appropriate formal education and career experience gained in both the smaller and larger venues with world class firms was the challenge. The appropriate candidates must also have the potential to be promoted to more senior management roles in the future.

Solution
Madison MacArthur's Operations Specialty Practice Team implemented a strategy to specifically target successful companies in the manufacturing-assembly sectors that were primarily engaged in high-tech or related product categories. These firms would be leaders in J.I.T. processes, and have excellent reputations in the marketplace.

Candidate
The successful candidate had all the requisite skills. He had started an entrepreneurial venture prior to graduation that was extremely successful and profitable. He then gained a broad knowledge base and extensive experience in purchasing analysis, strategies, planning, negotiating, cost management, project management, joint ventures and strategic alliances at three firms that were widely respected as leaders in their fields.

Postmortem
At the three month update, the client stated that the candidate was a great fit. Since that time, the candidate has been given additional responsibilities for the purchasing activities in the United States as well. The candidate has also been selected to Chair the Firm's International Purchasing Management Executive Committee.

Footnote
During the first meeting with the company President, it was very clear that in general, he was wary of search firms and obviously had some bad experiences in the past. Two months after the successful candidate was hired, the Director of Human Resources informed us that they were delighted with the new hire, found our process to be the most responsive and professional they had ever experienced and that although they did not have cause to use external resources frequently, Madison MacArthur would be their search firm of choice.