Our executive recruitment process

1.1  Our Understanding of Your Needs

Our clients come to us seeking the services of recruitment, executive search, and headhunting firms to undertake recruitment and staff selection processes, as may be required from time to time in the seven countries we operate i.e. Kenya Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), South Africa, Nigeria, and South Sudan. The Recruitment Consultants will be expected to demonstrate a good understanding of the strategic roles for the various positions identified by the client and undertake actions, as will be determined by the client, including any one or all of the following:

a)    Undertake recruitment and staff processes for CLIENT as may be required from time to time;

b)    Identify the critical job competencies and person specifications for recruitment positions as derived from the existing role profiles provided by CLIENT;

c)     Prepare suitable advertisements based on the approved role profiles to be placed in widely circulated print media or professional recruitment social platforms upon agreement with CLIENT;

d)    Complement the advertisements with database search and other methodologies e.g. headhunting;

e)    Receive, analyze, serialize, and submit to CLIENT the initial long list of applicants for consideration and sign-off;

f)     Screen and shortlist applicants based on the agreed selection criteria as stated in the vacancy announcement;

g)    Review the list of candidates short-listed with CLIENT and gain approval for commencement of the interview process;

h)    Adopt appropriate interview methodology(ies) and prepare interviewing tools and materials (Including evaluation criteria, structured questions and points for examination, tests/assessment centers) based on the position under consideration;

i)     Conduct competency-based interviews for the agreed criteria as stated in the vacancy announcement;

j)     Conduct psychometric tests and other relevant assessments on the best five candidates;

k)    Prepare and submit to the company a report on the initial interviews and psychometric tests;

l)     Offer advisory support services to the CLIENT interview panel which will include but not be limited to: All the necessary requisite arrangements and plans for the interview; contacting candidates; preparation of interview schedules; interview questions and score sheets; preparation of folders to be used by the interview panel members; taking minutes during the interviews including recording marks awarded; and preparation and submission of the comprehensive report to CLIENT;

m)  Conduct independent reference and background checks for the candidates selected by CLIENT for appointment;

n)    Communicate by letter or email to unsuccessful candidates after completion of recruitment; and

o)    Provide such other services as incidental to the recruitment and selection process.


1.2  Scope of Work;

The detailed terms are as follows.

The objective of our recruitment consultancy in Kenya Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), South Africa, Nigeria, and South Sudan is to offer a recruitment and selection service that matches CLIENT needs for both regular hires and consultants. The Consultant will facilitate the delivery of fast and effective results for recruitment solutions - attracting, motivating, and selecting the best candidates. It is imperative that the end-to-end recruitment process consistently demonstrates diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) best practices.

Key Tasks

•             Work closely with the CLIENT recruitment lead to review job descriptions and understand the skills, competencies, qualifications, and critical success factors required for each vacancy.

•             Employ the most appropriate, dynamic, and engaging channels to attract and motivate talent throughout the recruitment process. The Consultant will identify candidate priorities and aspirations and in turn communicate the CLIENT’s employment proposition in the best possible way.

•             Support the selection process by applying the appropriate methodology of candidate screening, testing, personality profiling, and interviewing to assess applicants’ qualifications, experience, motivation, and personal traits in order to ensure the best possible match.

Expected Outputs/ Deliverables

•             Advertise vacant positions.

•             Profiles of recommended candidates within stipulated timelines to be agreed upon.

•             Process report for each vacancy filled.

•             Reference checks for selected candidates.

1.3  Recruitment Approach;

COA’s Executive Recruitment value is in collaboration. We tailor-make our solutions to the unique and fast-changing culture of our clients. We approach all assignments from a relationship and research-driven HR strategy. Our recruitment team leverages and builds on this seamless relationship to capture critical competencies that are key to the success of each role. These key factors inform the strategic competency-based interviews for the shortlist report submitted to the Hiring Managers.  Multiple methods may be applied such as written & psychometric assessments, which will inform further probing interviews aligned to the competency interviews.

As a standard practice we use the Assessment Center Model of recruitment and below are the key steps of our procedure;

a)    Review of the Job Description with the client. It is important for us that the JD clearly defines the essential competencies the ideal jobholder should possess besides the job duties, responsibilities, and qualifications. The essential competencies are the most important in choosing the range of evaluations to be carried out.

b)    We place a job advert based on the JD on three popular Tanzania online job sites including our own www.careeroptionsafricagroup.com and www.hreastafrica.com. From our experience, this is adequate to attract adequate applications from qualified candidates within 15 days of the advert. If the client desires, we can place an advert on the print media at the client’s cost.

c)     We shall then shortlist the applications to identify those that meet the minimum requirements for the position as per the job description and prepare a shortlist of those to be interviewed, with a summary of their qualifications and experience.

d)    Conduct preliminary telephone interviews with all the shortlisted candidates. The preliminary interview is meant to screen the candidates by verifying basic information on the CV, especially subject knowledge, and work experience, and assess communication skills and the candidate’s self-confidence. This identifies the candidates to undergo the assessment center.


e)   Evaluation

Based on the JD we shall choose a range of written tests for the shortlisted candidates. Our most common range of tests are;

                      i.        Core Job Competence test that tests professional and managerial level skills in the technical job area and hands-on experience in the field.

                    ii.        Job-specific Case Study

                   iii.        Candidates will take a case in a subject area within their professional specialization. The case stay evaluates a candidate’s knowledge of the subject area, his or her analytical skills, logical thinking, and clarity of thought.

                   iv.        Aptitude Test

We have three standard aptitude tests we administer

a.    Abstract reasoning test

The tests measure the ability to think creatively in solving problems or seeking better solutions which are important for management decision-making.

b.    Critical reasoning test

The tests measure the ability to think critically

(pick out all essential elements in a decision-making process) which is important for management decision making

c.     Verbal abstract test

Measures the ability to read and understand some text and the ability to express one’s ideas with clarity

f)     From the written tests, the best 5-7 candidates attend a panel oral interview. The panel interview shall focus on the candidate’s experience, its relevance to the job deliverables, and the candidate’s core competencies.

g)   Initial Due Diligence

Once the shortlist is ready, COA will embark on conducting due diligence on the shortlisted candidates. The scope of the due diligence will include a Police clearance certificate, proof of residence, social media pages, work history, and CRB academic certificate verification. We make a deliberate decision to carry out basic due diligence on the shortlisted candidates so that we do not waste time recruiting only to end up with a tainted final candidate.

h)   Reference Checks on the final candidate

COA boasts of a full-fledged Verification Department which is well supported to conduct objective reference checks on candidates.

Based on the outcome of the interviews, the successful candidate shall be handed over to our Verification Department for a thorough reference and background profiling. Our verification team will then generate a report and hand it over to the CLIENT.

i)    Regret Letters

Unsuccessful candidates will be notified only after the successful candidate is on board. We shall however be updating them and managing their expectations throughout the process.


j)       Final Recruitment Report

COA shall present to CLIENT a detailed recruitment report on all candidates who attend the written test will be prepared and submitted to the client highlighting;

  1. Candidates’ qualifications
  2. Candidates’ experience and its relevance to the position
  3. Candidates’ key competences
  4. Candidates’ areas of strength
  5. Candidates’ weaknesses
  6. Consultants’ recommendations on the candidates

k)   Monitoring & Evaluation (Closure)

COA does not just give you a candidate and leave it at that: Two weeks after onboarding the successful candidate, we shall visit CLIENT and get feedback from the candidate on his experience in his new role. We shall also get feedback from the hiring manager.

We shall do another visit after 3 months just to ensure that everything is going on well and that the candidate has settled down.