Executive recruitment practices during economic uncertainty

In the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, life sciences companies continue to face macroeconomic challenges alongside most other industries. Life sciences businesses can successfully attract and retain a thriving professional workforce by demonstrating the clarity of their strategic direction, practicing purpose driven corporate culture, and excelling in executive recruitment practices. 

In this article, the industry experts at Swiss executive recruitment agency, Execruit, explore current macroeconomic challenges and their effect on recruitment practices for life sciences companies. 

Macroeconomic challenges 

From a looming recession, rising energy costs and climbing inflation rates, life sciences companies continue to experience financial pressures. Further, the humanitarian tragedy of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has resulted in significant global social and economic consequences. 

The Swiss economy rebounded from Covid-19, with 3.7 per cent growth; however, in addition to the above mentioned factors, the potential duration of the war and support for the influx of refugees from Ukraine (including health, housing, and schooling) are further sources of economic uncertainty. As an example, this uncertainty is reflected in fluctuating share prices and revision of Med Tech companies’ 2022 quarterly projected revenues at twice the rate compared to 2019 and one and a half times to 2021. 

Furthermore, a 2022 survey by McKinsey and Company found that 70 to 80 per cent of company executive respondents experienced negative impacts on their life sciences businesses, which they attribute to various macroeconomic challenges.

Life sciences companies must adapt to navigate the economic downturn and ongoing fiscal challenges. One such adaption is to expand talent recruitment practices to encourage growth, build overall resilience, and combat the impacts of worldwide staffing shortages.

Building a resilient workforce

Switzerland’s 2022 employment surpassed pre-pandemic levels. However, staffing deficiencies in hospitals and broader talent shortages caused by pandemic-related resignations, known as the Great Resignation, significantly contributed to financial pressures.  

Since 2021, a record number of employees across many industries, including healthcare, have quit or plan to leave their jobs due to burnout, dissatisfaction, inflexible work schedules, and other factors. Despite significant economic changes since 2021, 40 per cent of employees still plan to quit their jobs within the next six months.

With facing fierce competition for talent and shifting employee expectations, employers must take a multifaceted approach to attracting and retaining workers. 

Organisational culture 

Evaluating and enacting company-wide purpose statements is crucial to building a resilient workplace culture and competing for talent. To combat workplace discontent, employers must actively engage colleagues across the organisation and address issues they care about. Further, developing and promoting an organisational culture that values broader skill sets may help attract professional talent from other industries. 

Utilising specialist recruitment companies, such as Execruit, benefits life sciences companies by sourcing passionate talent that aligns with each company’s DNA and culture. 

General talent for executive recruitment

In today’s market, finding qualified talent requires embracing high mobility between industries. For example, 65 per cent of employees who left their jobs between 2020 and 2022 changed industries or left the workforce. To fill a position, hiring specialists, such as Execruit, comprehensively review each candidate’s unique experience and qualifications, including capabilities gained from external industries.  

The skills and capabilities gained from unconventional career paths can revolutionise an organisation through creative problem-solving, unique strategies, and diverse perspectives. 

Professional recruitment services can enhance the calibre of your life sciences team by:

  • Attracting workers with unique skills relevant to the vacant position
  • Assessing, interviewing, and completing background checks for potential candidates
  • Aligning candidate expectations with the role and company values

Additionally, certified executive coaching firms, such as industry leader Execruit, can further develop and transform executive talent. In addition to talent recruitment, Execruit utilises industry expertise and partnerships to strengthen capabilities and equip leaders in biotechnology and global life sciences. 

Therefore, recruitment practices that embrace the benefits of workers with non-traditional career paths can boost organisation efficiency while paving the way for the diverse and resilient leaders of tomorrow.

Globalised executive recruitment

With technological advancements and heightened post-pandemic demand for remote work, talent is becoming progressively mobile again. Life sciences companies can benefit from attracting talent willing to relocate or those able to fill remote positions. 

Investing in digital transformations and automation can enable certain employees to work remotely or semi-remotely. In addition to creating organisational efficiencies and reducing costs, remote and flexible work arrangements are crucial for attracting and retaining talent post-pandemic.  

Based in Switzerland, Exercruit utilises vast globalised networks to efficiently source the right talent for life science organisations during all stages of development and expansion. 

Biotechnology and life sciences companies may gain a competitive edge over other employers by offering flexible working arrangements, remote positions, or relocation benefits.  


All businesses must navigate the waves of economic ups and downs. However, strategic executive employment practices can help life sciences organisations weather the storm and build resilience following economic downturns. 

Recruitment agencies provide a competitive advantage and direct access to passionate, qualified employees during talent shortages. Further, recruitment specialists such as Execruit expertly fill priority positions essential to a company’s long-term strategy while promptly sourcing quality employees to manage short-term business demands. 

Partnering with an executive search agency, such as Execruit, provides certainty and peace of mind when seeking qualified talent aligned with the DNA and values of your life sciences company. 


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The Execruit team brings an unparalleled expertise and passion to address your talent recruitment, leadership assessment and development, career development, outplacement and e-learning requirements.

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