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Helping you find the brightest talent

  • Ultimate Performance

    Ultimate Performance (UP) are a global premium personal training organisation with gym locations all around the world - Men’s Fitness Magazine describes UP as “The Goldman Sachs, Real Madrid and Apple of Personal Training. They’re that far ahead of the field.” The business has huge growth ambitions beyond their PT services into new products like digital apps, publications, supplements, a self-certification business, documentaries and much more.To hit these new heights, they would need a world-class Creative Director who could work across the gym estate as well as these different business areas, leading the internal design and video teams in line with the brand identity and overall business goals.Business ChallengesThe CEO is strong character and heavily involved in the creative process so we needed to find a personality to match.The fitness industry is also quite specific and so some experience with this industry would be hugely beneficialOur Approach & SolutionsFull market mapping to establish where the leading fitness companies were based and if they had a senior enough Creative DirectorUP is based in Manchester but with hybrid working, the right candidate could come from further afield so the search was across the North of EnglandCreative recruitment is very subjective so meeting all of the candidates was important to assess proper suitabilityGuiding the client and candidates through a 3 stage processOur ResultsWe secured a well-respected Creative Director with extensive design and video production experience in the fitness industry within the pre-determined timescales. We are also in talks over a few other senior roles with the Digital & Technology teams.

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  • Simon Jersey

    A PE backed workwear fashion business needed to pivot and drive online retail as a result of the covid pandemic. They wanted to appoint a digital first MD from an ecommerce and trading background.Business ChallengesSimon Jersey had initially appointed an alternative search firm but had experienced little success. As a result, a proportion of the market had already been contacted but we were able to take a different approach and leverage our strength within ecommerce and digital to identify suitable candidates.Our Approach & SolutionsConducted an international search to identify businesses and pivotal senior candidates that had experienced a notable digital transformationCompiled, met and interviewed a long list of suitable candidates. Assessed their commercial and strategic capability as well as their agile ability to change the direction of the businessUsed psychometric testing tools to accompany our assessmentPresented a short list of the strongest candidates to the BoardOur ResultsWe secured an exceptional MD with a proven track record in ecommerce who encompassed the pace, agility and commercial prowess to deliver the necessary change and growth.

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  • Domino's

    A well-known global business wanting to re-invigorate their digital offering with the appointment of an innovative Product Director. It was imperative this candidate came from a trail-blazing business, well-known for their customer experience, forward thinking digital offering and out of the box thinking.Business ChallengesDespite the strength of the brand, the Milton Keynes HQ is a challenging location with many candidates unwilling to travel outside of London.Our Approach & SolutionsIdentified businesses across Greater London with a reputation for digital innovation and approached current and previous senior product candidatesConducted a nationwide search to capture candidates willing to travel to Milton Keynes weekly, specifically those located on commuter train linesRigorously assessed candidate’s innovative capability, customer first approach and ability to devise and deliver digital excellenceMet all relevant candidates before compiling a shortlist of the strongest candidatesOur ResultsWe secured an excellent Product Director with proven experience delivering best-in-class B2C digital solutions. We have subsequently hired many heads across Digital, Data, Product and Marketing.

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  • Black Circles

    High growth retailer looking to double revenue and on-board a proven Chief Commercial Officer with a background in trading and supplier relationship management. The CEO wanted to see candidates that had worked with a volume of SKUs, managed complex supplier relationships and had been an integral part of business growth.Business ChallengesWith the Black Circles office being located in Edinburgh, we had to identify candidates that either lived locally, lived close to commuter trains across the North (we identified candidates below Birmingham would be unwilling to travel) or were willing to relocate for the role.Our Approach & SolutionsExtensive search of the market highlighting relevant companies with the perfect candidate profile for us to considerAcknowledged the needs for connections to Scotland and EdinburghUtilised our extensive network to seek recommendations, alongside leveraging the knowledge of our internal teamsCompiled a longlist of suitable candidates, met and interviewed everyone interested in proceeding and produced a shortlist of the best candidates in the marketSupported Black Circles throughout the interview , selection and offer processOur ResultsWe secured a superb CCO with the industry experience and commercial acumen needed to succeed in this role. Delivered within 12 weeks over the Christmas period.

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  • Beauty Bay

    Beauty Bay is a £100m t/o pureplay online retainer and was going through a period of transition wanting to pivot from brand led marketing to more performance / acquisition channels. With this in mind, the business didn’t currently employ anyone at a senior level who could orchestrate and manage their generous performance marketing budgets and build an online acquisition strategy so they partnered with Forward Role to find a suitable candidate.Business ChallengesBeauty Bay were keen to bring in a contractor initially with a view to taking the candidate on permanently after a 6 month period, thus reducing the pool of candidates we could consider. The internal recruiter there is also very well networked so we’d need to fit in around the search that he had already done. This was a high profile role with a lot of visibility within the business which would ultimately play an important part in shaping the future of the business.Our Approach & SolutionsFull briefing to assess requirements, profile, background, responsibilities, budgets, previous experience and culture fitLeverage the knowledge from our internal teams in Marketing, Digital & Technology to explore candidates already known to us in our networksFull advertising campaign across generic and niche job boards and also using our extensive social reachA tight shortlist of 3 candidates was presented which matched the requirementsOur ResultsWe secured an impressive Director of Performance to join Beauty Bay with immediate effect. The process from briefing to offer acceptance was just over 2 weeks

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  • is a high growth, pure play ecommerce business based in Bolton. A major online player, became one of the UK's biggest commercial success stories when it was valued at £1.2bn as it debuted on the London Stock Exchange.Pre IPO, partnered exclusively with FR Executive to recruit a ‘best in class’ senior team consisting of the following:Director of EcommerceHead of RetentionHead of Multimedia StudioHead of ContentStrategy and DeliveryWorking with the Commercial Director and Marketing Director to shape role specifications and salaries for roles which were new to the business.Working with the Marketing Director to help shape structures for two new departments.Mapping the UK market for best in class talent in the above specialisms.Using a multi-channel candidate attraction methodology from niche advertising to headhunting, to ensure maximised candidate reach.ResultsAll roles successfully filled within the scheduled 6 weeks.Candidates placed from high profile brands such as The Hut Group, Amazon, and Waterstones.From a low base level of awareness, Forward Role helped build’s talent brand in the North West market and beyond, working alongside the social media and PR teams on talent engagement strategies.What AO say about chose FR Executive, because their ethics and values fit well with our own. We wanted to develop a true relationship approach with an Executive Search Consultancy who understood our culture and brand. At people are our ultimate differentiator, so by using FR Executive we ensured we reached the best people in the market place, and made hires that will be crucial to the continued success of our business. Thanks to Steve and FR Executive for their hard work and considerable success to date.Alex Braddock - Head of Talent at

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  • On the Beach

    On the Beach are a FTSE 250 B2C online travel business driven by cutting edge technology and a disruptive customer proposition.The challengeWe were briefed in January 2014:To find the business a Head of Digital Acquisition to deliver aggressive online growth targets.To find a potential successor for the CMO, who had a clear timescale around his own exit from the business.The strategyA retained head hunt assignment to target the UK’s most talented Digital leaders.The resultAlan Harding placed with the business from Phones4uAlan drives huge digital growth leading to an IPO valuation of £240mAlan is made Marketing Director of the business in growth ✅excellent retention and career growth ✅What On the Beach say about us“Steve contacted me at a time when I was starting to think about my next big career challenge. The opportunity to join a high growth business like On the Beach and have a clear career pathway to leading the Marketing department and equity made this the ideal move for me.Steve is a leader in his space and is the go to Executive Recruiter for senior Digital and Marketing roles in the North of England”Alan Harding - Marketing Director, On the Beach

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  • Cyber Security Awareness Month Blog (3)

    Cyber Leaders Series: Thomas Ballin

    ​​​October is Cyber Security Awareness Month! To celebrate we are putting the spotlight on leaders in CyberSec, to find ou... Read more

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    14 hours ago
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    SAP ECC6 End of life...Are you REALLY ready?

    SAP ECC6 end of life will be happening in 2027 and replaced by S/4 HANA. There are over 30,000 ECC customers across the gl... Read more

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    3 days ago
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    6 Inspirational CTOs To Look Up To

    Do you see yourself as a future CTO?Achieving the rank of Chief Technology Officer can be challenging, but the results mak... Read more

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    2 weeks ago
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