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Our expert in-house capability provides accurate, up-to-date and incisive research to deliver swift, precise outcomes. Targeted individuals are engaged with care and professionalism and the client opportunity presented in a clear and well-prepared format.

Our News

Our expert in-house capability provides accurate, up-to-date and incisive research to deliver swift, precise outcomes. Targeted individuals are engaged with care and professionalism and the client opportunity presented in a clear and well-prepared format.

2022: a year of change for businesses

The Howgate Sable team

As 2022 draws to a close, Howgate Sable directors Nick Irving and Neil Humphreys take a look back on the many developments which have made 2022 a year of change for businesses around the world.

Throughout 2022, our team has been gathering knowledge and insight into our core operational sectors, with a keen ear to the ground proving – as always – to be our most valuable asset.

One of the most notable developments of the year has been the continued ‘war for talent,’ which hasn’t abated since we began looking at the pandemic through the rear-view mirror. For context, in the last 12 senior placements we made, five candidates received multiple offers on the table. Candidates based their decisions on several factors from role content, chemistry with leadership, willingness to adapt to change and more. It’s interesting to note that traditional packages are carrying less weight than ever before in favour of a modern approach to role management. Where employers fell short on hiring their preferred candidate, it rested squarely on ‘recruitment / candidate experience,’ – slow decision making and irregular updates.

The coining of terms such as ‘The Great Resignation, Quiet Quitting, The Great Re-Invention, The Great Break-Up’ and more have shifted focus to ensuring employers retain their best. The pandemic has delivered lasting change and employers and employees who have been unable to adapt have sadly been left behind. The debate for hybrid working continues to rage, but our extensive network suggests the hybrid model has been successful across most industries. Whether this continues to be normalised remains to be seen. Not all employers are on board of course; Elon Musk’s ‘back to the office mandate to Twitter employees made headline news – but in our experience, most businesses are still trying hard to create a hybrid utopia, in turn opening their own doors to a wealth of new talent which is located outside of their typical geography.

Businesses are now facing the challenge of operating successfully against impending recession, rampant inflation and political unrest. 2023 will likely be a year of challenges, one where it will be more important than ever to have visionary leadership steering the ship.

The technology sector has taken a brutal hit over the past couple of months, with huge lay-offs from some of the largest organisations. This has created a surplus of strong ‘tech’ talent globally. Some of our best-positioned clients have jumped on this opportunity and are engaging with talent from a different sector, who can bring a unique set of skills to the party. We have also seen less rigid job descriptions and key role criteria than ever before, providing more opportunity for senior talent, whilst affording employers a fresh set of eyes.

Cybersecurity is another function that has risen to the surface over the past couple of years. With increased cyber threats across all markets, the need for high quality Chief Information Security Officers is of critical importance. This has been the catalyst for Howgate Sable to establish a global Cybersecurity practice in 2022, with the support and expertise of globally-renowned cybersecurity expert Andy Watkin-Child.

Similarly, the recent appointment of the Howgate Sable advisory board has boosted our depth of knowledge across some of our core areas of expertise. We have welcomed:
Jesper Berg: A truly global HR professional who has delivered some of the most difficult and complex HR transformations for some of the world’s largest employers.
Chris Browne OBE: A globally recognised business leader who has held Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer roles for publicly listed firms, in addition to her several board seats.
Feilim Mackle: An esteemed C-Level executive and multiple board member who has an exceptional track record within Financial Services.

Moreover, 2022 also saw Howgate Sable launch our first overseas office – Howgate Sable Middle East. This Dubai-based outfit is headed by Andrew Bailey as our regional managing director, and serves our growing demand for searches in the Middle East and North Africa. Andrew is supported by experienced headhunter Navin Govind, and the pair are making great strides in the region.

As we head into 2023, we wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous new year.

The EMI Practice at Howgate Sable really took the time to understand our situation and find exceptional candidates who could fulfil challenging international leadership assignments for a truly global company with a history that spans well over 200 years.

It was a first class experience and positive outcome on many levels.


Barry McDonnell – Director of Manufacturing at De La Rue International

I have worked with the Howgate Sable team on several occasions whilst hiring mission-critical executives. Partnership is the byword for this organisation – they act as an extension of my team and work hard to support me not only in the technical solution, but in the sense of a deep understanding of my specific requirements. Delivery is the key measure of our talent partners and Howgate Sable have always achieved what was asked of them.

Jesper Berg – SVP HR, ABB

Having worked with Howgate Sable as a client and as a candidate I can confidently say their ability to deliver on complex searches is second to none. They not only have a detailed knowledge of the marketplace but also understand the importance of cultural fit. 

Bridget Lea – O2

I was particularly impressed with Howgate Sable’s knowledge and network in the aviation sector, the quality of the candidates provided at shortlist and the availability of Nick and the team to provide us with advice and guidance on candidates when required. Nick was particularly effective in understanding our needs as a Company and being flexible in adapting requirements and plans.

Paul Hutchings – Thomas Cook Group Airlines

I have recently worked with Nick from Howgate Sable to recruit a new Head of Aircraft Operations for Thomson Airways. I was particularly impressed by the wide-reaching search undertaken and the quality of the candidates put forward. The skills match to the brief was excellent and I am delighted with the individual we selected.

Dawn Wilson – Thomson Airways

From their initial call to me the Aviation practice team at Howgate Sable demonstrated a significant difference. Straightforward and to the point, the extent of their network and deep insight into the industry was immediately evident. The added value I have received as a candidate is tangible. An almost instant rapport quickly developed into a focused business relationship which is open, honest, respectful and above all trustworthy.

Carl Gissing