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14 Sep, 2013

Headhunters Association Protests Impact of US Immigration Bill on Executive Hiring


New York, 09/11/2013 – The Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC), the worldwide trade association representing the retained executive recruitment industry, responded in a letter to United States Senators Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Marco Rubio (R-FL), highlighting the impact of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, also known as or S. 744, on the executive search industry.

“While the AESC is not taking a stance in opposition to the general intentions of the Immigration Bill, we do believe that unintended negative consequences should be prevented if at all possible,” said Peter M. Felix, AESC President. “Thus to include executive search firms in the provisions of the bill as labor contractors seems to be counter-productive and an unnecessary inhibition to the recruitment of foreign or US senior executives from overseas into the United States. Such recruitment is conducted under special retained consulting contracts with client organizations and is performed on a highly selective and occasional basis.

“Thus, there is no risk of abusive or volume-based recruiting. To impose the regulatory provisions of the bill upon this important consulting service and thus potentially inhibiting the recruitment of the best internationally qualified executives for the benefit of the US economy could be harmful, and in our view, unnecessary. We are hopeful that the appropriate changes will be made to the bill,” stated Felix.

Entertainment and tech sector lobbyists in particular have achieved amendments to the Senate Bill that will protect their industries from extemporaneous consequences, such as additional fees or lowering the cap on highly skilled sector workers, but the executive search industry, responsible for the recruitment of highly-skilled senior management for organizations worldwide, has received no protections. While multinational executives, joining professors, researchers, and athletes, would be exempted from existing green-card limits, the bill nevertheless will create unnecessary regulatory provisions for executive search firms.