10 Trends That Will Shape Executive Recruitment in 2021

5 Minutes
Over the last few years the recruitment landscape has changed dramatically. From increased reliance on technology for seeking out and assessing candidates to changes in what candidates value most when evaluating roles, recruiting processes have changed and will continue to change. 

As the talent landscape transforms, HR leaders should be aware of the trends that will become more important in the executive recruitment industry in the future. With technology impacting every area of recruitment, and the changes brought about by recent global events, HR leaders will need to be able to adapt to new trends to stay successful.

If you’re struggling with your executive recruitment, contact Pareto. We have 25 years of experience in training and recruiting the best talent, and can help provide you with the most skilled professionals to fill your executive roles. 

Top 10 Trends That Will Shape Executive Recruitment 

External Candidate Recruitment

Thanks to recent events, companies are now increasingly looking for external candidates to fill their roles, and it’s a trend that is set to continue. As the recruitment market becomes increasingly more competitive, HR leaders are looking away from internal promotions and instead looking to attract the best talent already on the market. 

Focus on Diversity

While diversity has always been important during recruiting processes, over the last year it’s become a crucial priority for companies. The benefits of hiring a diverse workforce are clear: companies that do focus on diversity find that it’s easier to retain employees, while having a team with different backgrounds can lead to more creativity and better problem-solving. 

Diversity is also a priority for candidates - over 86% of jobseekers say that workplace diversity is an important factor for them when looking for a new job. 


More than ever before, candidates are looking for greater flexibility in their roles - this includes possibilities like hybrid working and the chance to work from home. Though this was certainly a need over the last year, it has become something that candidates are seeking out when applying for a job.

In fact, flexibility may become one of the biggest trends that will shape executive recruitment this year. While HR leaders should recognise that candidates are increasingly looking for flexibility, it’s also paramount that businesses recognise that hybrid ways of working are important for future periods of uncertainty. 


When it comes to trends that will shape executive recruitment in the future, technology is an obvious factor. Innovative technology like AI-enhanced candidate vetting has the ability to transform recruiting processes for companies, making it easier to identify the right candidates for roles and decrease your chances of an unsuccessful hire.


According to LinkedIn, adaptability is the number one skill that recruiters will need in the future. As HR leaders respond to periods of increased candidate availability and times of shortages, it’s important that they can be adaptable. 

This is even more important when it comes to executive recruiting processes. Executive recruitment is an area with greater responsibility as these high-level roles will be crucial for future business development. Consequently, recruiters should be able to deal with any future possibility when it comes to hiring for these roles. This makes adaptability a clear trend that will shape recruitment in the coming years.

Faster Hiring 

As companies increase their use of video conferencing software and respond to a candidate shortage, faster hiring is bound to become more pronounced in recruitment. No longer do candidates have to visit an office for an interview – now, most recruiting processes are done online, over email, video calls, and even online assessment software.

Globally, the shortage of talent is at an all-time high, amounting to approximately 40 million workers. As a result of this, companies who find skilled talent may be more likely to shorten the recruitment process in order to get roles filled quickly, rather than risk another few months without an employee – especially in executive-level roles.

Social and Virtual Recruiting 

Also related to faster recruiting processes, we’re going to see social and virtual recruiting becoming a mainstay of the recruitment sector. Now, recruitment agencies are increasingly relying on social platforms like LinkedIn to discover the best talent, while virtual recruitment offers HR leaders the chance to recruit talent from all around the world.  

Focus on Company Brands

Now that so many candidates are being recruited digitally, many jobseekers are searching for their prospective company online and making their recruitment decisions based on the information that they find. If your company doesn’t maintain an online presence or if the information you put out there isn’t reputable, it may harm your chances of securing the best talent.

HR leaders should be involved in some of the employer branding process and evaluate how your marketing and branding exercises are impacting your recruiting processes.

Revisiting Skills 

One important trend that will shape future recruitment is digital transformation. As workplaces change irrevocably due to digital innovations, the skills that you want to recruit for are also going to be impacted. While manual and administrative jobs will see a decline in demand, it’s technological and cognitive skills that HR leaders should be looking for during recruitment processes.

Expansion of Benefits 

In order to retain employees in a competitive jobs market, HR leaders should be examining their benefits packages to see how they can make themselves more attractive. While salary is no longer the most important factor attracting candidates to roles, there are many other ways to keep your roles competitive and attractive. This includes introducing hybrid working and non-work perks including gym memberships and health insurance. 

Are you struggling to attract the top talent to your company? Consider using an executive search firm like Pareto. Our talented recruitment specialists have the skills and industry knowledge necessary to connect you with the most valuable talent. Contact us today to see how we can help.

Looking to strengthen your Business?

Let's Talk