The field of fractional executive staffing agencies is growing rapidly in response to the growing demand for flexible solutions to fill urgent staffing gaps. And despite ongoing challenges within traditional hiring options, the pool of talented leaders looking for the combination of new challenges and flexibility offered by fractional work is only growing.
When we got started in 2016, we were hard pressed to find another competitor offering fractional chief of staff services. Our virtual model was still considered innovative (the pandemic was still four years away), and the chief of staff role was unfamiliar to many. Needless to say, it’s a very different business environment today.
With so many fractional staffing agencies to choose from, it’s important to understand the wide range of talent vetting and matching practices within the field. At one end of the spectrum, you’ll find agencies that offer a talent marketplace that cuts out nearly all human involvement in the talent vetting and client matching process. They take a client’s scope of work, publish it to their platform, and pass along resumes of individuals who meet the requirements, but they leave the entire vetting process to you.
At vChief, we take a different approach. Our mission is to make an immediate impact and drive growth for our clients by providing top-notch talent. We take pains to carefully curate our talent pool and make highly tailored matches for clients.
Here’s a look at three factors that set our talent apart from the competition.
1. Our Thorough Vetting Process Identifies Self Starters
We select candidates to join our talent pool through a rigorous, multi-step interview process. While relevant industry experience is the baseline requirement for applying to the talent pool, our in-house talent team spends a lot of time with each applicant to assess their leadership skills. The number one trait we look for is a proven history of being a self-starter.
The ability to make an immediate impact is the cornerstone of our model. Our talent must be able to step into an engagement with minimal onboarding and figure out the missing pieces on their own. During the interview process, we ensure that our candidates have a proven ability to proactively gather information, develop strategies, and begin executing — instead of waiting for assignments to be handed to them.
2. Our Diverse Pool of Seasoned Talent Can Support Any Industry
Our talent pool includes nearly 500 individuals with experience in a broad range of sectors. A quick scan of our talent bios reveals backgrounds from sectors including education, health care, manufacturing and consumer goods, politics, legal services, music production, arts administration, agribusiness, international development, nonprofits, and government, just to name a few. The vast majority of our team members — 94 percent — have at least 9 years of experience in their fields. Many have more than 20 years of experience.
Not only do they have expertise as individual contributors, but they’ve also managed and led teams and organizations. This leadership experience allows them to serve as a thought partner to leaders and even provide mentorship when needed.
With more than 83 percent of our talent pool using feminine or gender neutral pronouns and 30 percent identifying as a person of color, our talent can bring an often underrepresented perspective to executive teams.
3. Our Matching Process Uncovers Unforeseen Needs
Our approach to matching is consultative and hands-on. During a 30-minute call, our team engages in detailed conversations to diagnose the nuanced needs of each client. They discuss challenges you’re facing related to operations, communications, programming, and more, and they get to know your leadership skills, your team culture, and your core values.
Many clients come to us unsure of what kind of help they need, but knowing they need to expand their capacity as fast as possible. Our team’s ability to read between the lines and ask targeted questions helps us identify skills gaps that are impacting your effectiveness.
After that call, our team synthesizes everything they’ve learned from the call into a report outlining your needs and priorities. Our team brings to bear our intimate knowledge of each person in the talent pool to select six to eight potential candidates to invite to apply. From there, we bring three to five candidates to our client, aiming to present as diverse a list of candidates as possible, in terms of demographics, industry experience, and specific expertise. Clients then choose up to three candidates to interview. If they find a good match, their new fractional team member can start right away. The whole matching process takes no more than two weeks.
Get Tailored Support to Achieve Your Goals
At vChief, we place talented change-makers in fractional roles such as Associate Chief of Staff, Chief of Staff, Chief Operating Officer, and Executive Director. Our clients include startups, nonprofits, foundations, educational organizations, and corporate enterprises.
Schedule your free consultation with vChief today to get matched with a capable leader who can take urgent projects and strategic business initiatives off your plate.