Executive Search: Chief Auditors and Chief Risk Officers

Finding the best talent to lead your audit and risk teams

Are you getting exceptional leaders? You should be.

If you’ve hit this page it’s possibly because you’re looking for a new leader for your audit and risk function. Perhaps you haven’t been able to grow the next generation of leaders. This is common and something we’re passionate about addressing.

Like other forms of leadership, leadership of risk and assurance functions requires a different skillset and focus from delivery, management or oversight.

While a safe set of hands is essential, modern companies should insist on much more than this. The leader’s primary focus is future oriented, performance driven and systemic in its approach to capability building and transformation. Breakthrough thinking is required.

Will traditional search and recruitment get you there?

In our view “copy and paste templating” doesn’t work, and if you want to drive change then you need someone who is good at change – not just running the thing that they ran in their last job.

Genuine leaders in this area are hard to find – particularly strategic commercial audit leaders, and progressive chief risk officers who can adapt to your context. They are rare, but they do exist.

Because placement of these roles happens infrequently, generalist search firms tend to only touch those roles every few years. There is often a lack of precision in their understanding of what is required, and this is often shaped by prior expectations and big assumptions on past practice and portability.

In the absence of being able to tackle this strategically, the default mode is to hire someone doing a “similar role” elsewhere. This can result in templating and bringing in old practices that aren’t fit for your organisation, and missing the opportunity for necessary breakthroughs. It can also result in clumsy change and having to re-hire in under 24 months.

Our advice? Tread carefully if you’re going down the path of “lift and shift” without deep matching from someone who can help you nuance the brief.

How we can help

At TDA we focus on risk leadership. We work with emerging and experienced leaders to help them get the clarity they need to lead their teams and organisations effectively.

Our core business is getting to know and work with the best audit and risk leaders in the country and growing and developing the next generation of leaders.

We can help in three ways:

  1. Shaping: If you are thinking about hiring, let us help you early to understand what’s possible and shape the brief.
  2. Tapping the market: If you’re about to start hiring, let us supplement your recruiting through promotion to and recommendations from our network or a more active search process.
  3. Development: If you’re thinking about a lateral hire or want to grow your next leaders, let us shape a development program around them that sets them up for success and to master the brief.

If this is of interest, please get in touch to schedule a 15 minute exploratory conversation.

FAQs – Executive Search and Leadership Development

Interested in accelerating your career? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions on this topic:

Do you get many search opportunities?

We work as a key node in the CRO and Chief Auditor and Audit & Risk committee network which means our name comes up regularly as someone to talk to.

If we’ve got a search remit then we’ll actively engage.

If not we’ll sometimes refer people who we think are well suited for those roles and if we know it’s a good fit for both sides. Occasionally we’ll advocate for exceptional people.

This is a very select group and requires a recent working relationship.

Note we only engage on CAE, CRO or Audit & Risk Committee appointments.

I’m hiring, can you help?

Our network is extensive and we get to see a lot of senior people in action, many of whom aren’t actively looking or on search lists.

We can help in the following ways:

  • Get the word out to our extensive network
  • Speak to potential candidates and refer them into your hiring process.

A fee applies commensurate with the effort and the successful placement of the candidate. This is waived for current and longstanding clients.

I need help defining my CAE or CRO roles and functions.

We work with many organisations to define the role, scope and position descriptions for chief auditors, chief risk officers and their teams. We also work with executive sponsors to get absolute clarity on the roles, portfolios and porfolios for the risk and assurance suite, and how it comes together with adjacent roles.

Here’s a few useful resources that showcase our thinking.

If you need help defining your structures, position descriptions before tapping the market we can help. Please get in touch.

Like all sponsors we need to be confident in our recommendations.

That means that we’ve seen you in action, been impressed by you and we think you’re well suited to a role.

This is a high bar and most likely only presents itself if we’ve worked together closely and been impressed by you.

How do I get to work with you?

Typically we’d be called in to help get clarity for an audit or risk function or drive transformation in one or more elements. This is a great way to get started.

We also put coaching and mentoring sessions around experience and emerging risk and assurance leaders.

During COVID we’re also opening up personal coaching and mentoring sessions including new options for self-funded participants.

Find out more about our coaching and mentoring for risk and assurance leaders here.

Is TDA hiring?

We work at the pointy end of the market. This requires a highly experienced and proven team.

Todd leads all assignments personally. From time to time we have an assignment that requires specialist skills or extra capacity. On those occasions, we go to our proven network of freelancers and alliance partners.

This is a very select group with a long track record of working with us as a client or member of a project team.

Have a look through our site, or better still, book an exploratory call to shortcut the process.