Payments, Digital and Transaction Services
The evolving global payments & transaction services business
Global Payments, Digital and Transaction Services (GPD&TS) is a dynamic and increasingly sophisticated and innovative business segment. It encompasses a range of industry sectors and business lines that facilitate and support the secure and timely transmission of complex data, communication, and information-driven transactions.
This unique practice group was initially designed and built by EMA Partners to support clients within traditional payments and data transaction service businesses including, but not limited to, retail and commercial lending, credit and debit card issuance, payment networks and schemes, merchant acquiring, payment processing, card & POS solution providers and loyalty & rewards.
The increasing focus on digital and mobile payments has stimulated the expansion of our unique GPD&TS practice group. Like the Payments sector, the telecommunications industry has undergone a transformation, with the increasing adoption of mobile devices and smartphones and the proliferation of applications that allow consumers to do far more with their phones than simply make a call. In response to the moves made by the MNOs (mobile network operators) to compete in the payments business, the traditional payments ecosystem and its participants are forced to respond and react, and the ecosystem continues to become further disrupted by the increasing interest of retailers and technology companies (including a slew of start-ups) that are all jostling for a place in the payments market.
The race to launch the optimal mobile payment product is underway, and the "winning" solution must not only entice and attract early adopters but, must also be a sustainable, secure and profitable solution that gains broad acceptance with consumers and merchants. However, a safe and reliable payment transaction cannot exist without the ecosystem to support it, and this ecosystem requires regulatory oversight and a technology infrastructure that can protect both the consumer, the merchant and the payment provider.
The ability to monetise the payment vehicle or service is also posing a challenge for the newer payment start-up business models that initially "hook" a consumer with features that are free, but that often requires a return to a more traditional payment system or infrastructure that enables the payment to be securely and efficiently processed and reconciled.
As a result of the increasingly sophisticated advancements in technology and the converging dynamics of both traditional and new payments business models, the payments and transaction services industry is an exciting and evolving field, and the need for talent is at an all-time high. Over the past five years, we have witnessed a significant cross-pollination of talent across core traditional payments companies, the retailers, MNOs and the technology sectors, particularly in the areas of Product, Digital, Innovation, Technology and Sales.
The retail payments ecosystem has undeniably expanded and as new and innovative companies begin to enter and disrupt the payments market, the landscape shifts, and our practice group evolves. Across the globe, we are committed to supporting the ongoing demands of our clients, in both the traditional and start-up field, and remain in alignment with changing customer behaviour while keeping pace with today's digital and mobile environment.
In line with the evolution taking place and the growing importance of digital and mobile channels, the GPD&TS practice is focused on identifying talented leaders who have a thorough understanding of emerging and disruptive payment technologies. Increasingly our clients are seeking expertise in the areas of Digital & Mobile Payments, M-Commerce, Geo-Location, NFC, Beacon Technology, M2M or the Internet of Things (IoT), Digital Identity & Security, Tokenisation, HCE and Biometrics. We are also seeing greater attention towards the role of Digital and Crypto Currencies.
As the leading players of the legacy or traditional payment industry look to adapt to a shifting landscape, they must examine the potential risk or threat of dis-intermediation or diminishing consumer or client engagement. Rather than being fearful of change, traditional payments organisations must embrace the new world and understand their place within it. Newer entrants must also jostle for position, recognising that a secure payment transaction will struggle to exist without the collaboration of established parties.
Regardless of how innovative or technologically savvy a new payment solution may be, it will always be subject to regulation, compliance and controls, which requires knowledge of existing payment infrastructures & networks, technologies and governance. Rather than competing with one another, the old world and the new world of payments need to understand how to co-exist, collaborate and partner with one another, and not lose sight of the goal to provide customers with a convenient and reliable way to purchase goods and services.
The Payments sector is ultimately about connectivity and EMA's search practitioners have a proven track record of success partnering with clients from both the traditional and emerging players. With extensive exposure to the diversity and vitality of today's global payments and transaction services business, EMA is the only search firm to have developed a global practice to support this dynamic area.
EMA Partners GPD&TS Practice
As one of EMA's most comprehensive areas of specialisation, our GPD&TS practice group has been strategically designed to support our clients across all functional areas, including, but not limited to Sales & Marketing, Technology & Operations, Product, Digital, Innovation & Development, and Analytics & Finance.
Our strategy is simple; we believe that becoming an authority in a specific area allows us to conduct searches more efficiently and permits us to react quickly to industry trends and changing market climates. EMA's Partners and Associates have deep expertise in the GPD&TS area, and many have worked in the sector. Their knowledge, coupled with years of search experience ensures that our search practitioners can provide unparalleled value, wisdom and support to our clients.
As a result of our firm's extensive payments knowledge, we are constantly active in the market, conducting search work across all critical functional areas. Our clients can be assured that each of our firm's practitioners has strong relationships with a remarkably comprehensive and high calibre pool of qualified and dedicated Payments and Transactional Services executives.
Our clients often seek to expand, develop, and in some cases, reinvent new payment or digital product lines, channels and technologies. As such, our firm is acutely aware of our client's enhanced interest in the areas of innovation, technology, product and process re-engineering. The market for specialised talent in this field is extremely competitive, as the pool is lean and requires a strong network of trusted contacts and an intimate understanding of the market, both locally and abroad. The need to source for external payments and transactions services talent is a global requirement, and competition to secure premium talented executives who have a proven track record of success and an ability to manage through change continues to intensify.
Our GPD&TS practice is an area of hyper-speciality and one in which our firm is passionately committed to. We believe that it is one of the most exciting and growing global market segments, and our practice has been specifically developed to support this niche industry around the world. Our practice comprises of six core global offices and each office is responsible for managing a specific region. In addition, we have consultants in other regions that support the GPD&TS practice
Our Lines of Business
Credit card issuing is a profitable worldwide business for banks, credit unions and retailers, who provide or "issue" a credit card for their customers, small business or commercial clients. Credit card issuers have been required to become increasingly nimble and resourceful in developing innovative, data-driven and value-added card products and marketing campaigns in order to retain and promote consumer card spend.
Different global markets have specific and unique legal, regulatory, compliance and technology environments that apply to the issuance of credit cards. EMA Partners has developed close partnerships with many global financial services institutions and retailers to support all lines of their issuing business. Across EMA's GPD&TS credit card issuing portfolio, we have supported clients across the following key functional areas: Sales and Marketing, Product, Risk and Fraud, Portfolio Analytics, Technology & Operations, Finance and R&D, and have successfully placed numerous executives at the EVP, SVP, Business Lead and VP level of search.
EMA Partners also has a wealth of experience in supporting retailers who are building out and developing a financial services division from the ground up. With our payments talent pool, we have been successful in not only placing the executive tier but building out and staffing entire business divisions, such as product, analytics and risk to help support and build our client's growing financial services businesses.
Global Debit Card or "bank card" usage and transactional volume have increased substantially over the past three years. This growth is due largely in response to the tightening global credit economy and as a result of deepening acceptance in the online payments and micro-payments environment.
In order to support our clients in this space, EMA Partners has developed strong relationships with both debit network providers and banking institutions to support this specific line of business.
Our search practitioners can leverage their insightful and sophisticated knowledge and understanding of the unique differences that exist across each country's debit network environment, switching infrastructure and technology platforms. They are well positioned to support our clients with their growth and expansion initiatives.
In short, we can provide access to the global talent pool, which is necessary to ensure that our client's debit card issuance business remains secure, compliant and profitable from a risk and fraud, product and marketing, operations and relationship management perspective.
Merchant Acquirers and Processors are an integral part of the payment industry eco-system, facilitating and supporting the transactional payment flow between the cardholder, the banks, the payment network and the merchant or retailer.
In support of the transaction flow, Merchant Acquires provide four key functions, merchant acceptance-including underwriting the terms under which the Merchant accepts card payment, authorisation at POS, facilitation of the clearing and settlement of funds and providing informational statement services to the merchant.
EMA Partners GPD&TS works extensively with Merchant Acquirers to identify strong payments executives, most frequently in the areas of Business Development, Relationship Management and Sales. In order to ensure that we support the Merchant Acquiring business across all areas that are critical for the success of their business operations, we have also developed specialised functional practice groups to support our clients in other key areas.
In the area of Technology, for example, we have extensive experience in identifying C-level Technology executives who can provide the necessary tactical leadership in the areas of Network Architecture, Infrastructure, Software, and Application Development. Another sought after area of expertise in the Merchant Acquiring field is risk, fraud and compliance, and our firm has many years of dedicated experience in sourcing talent in this space.
Third Party Outsourcing traditionally refers to service providers who offer external vendor support to companies in the payments and transactions services space.
Providing their clients with external products and services such as back-office support functionality, risk management, technology, security, regulatory compliance, call centre support, analytics or research, our clients in this space often seek assistance in identifying and sourcing strategic and tactical operational leaders who have a deep payments background across multiple functional areas.
Throughout the payments industry, the emergence of new technologies including chip and PIN, smart card, wireless and RFID, web-based banking, bill payment and e-commerce requires issuers, acquirers, payment network companies, merchants and card manufacturers to introduce and implement seemingly endless new technologies.
EMA Partners GPD&TS practice group supports clients who design, architect and manufacture hardware and software technologies in the form of new and advanced ATMs, terminals, POS systems and web-based applications. Many of our Payments clients undergo rigorous, time-sensitive transformation and conversion initiatives in order to transition from legacy systems and applications onto newer technology platforms. Such initiatives bring specific challenges to the Payments Hardware and Software Manufacturers who must remain on the cutting edge in terms of attracting and retaining the necessary internal talent and competitive intelligence.
EMA Partners GPD&TS works extensively to support a highly specialised group of hardware and software manufacturing clients who focus on developing, designing and producing products specifically designed to support the Payments industry. Organisations in this area are primarily focused on identifying strong executive talent who possess a comprehensive technical understanding of payment systems, platforms, application development, and infrastructural design, secure data and document management, but who also have the ability to lead and mentor a team of highly specialised staff.
The most commonly known global credit card payment network companies are VISA, Mastercard and American Express, all of which provide the routing infrastructure necessary to facilitate payment between the cardholder, the issuing bank and the acquirer. In the debit world, the landscape differs dramatically from country to country with different domestic debit networks taking precedence.
Recently subjected to intensive political and public scrutiny over the fairness and transparency of interchange fees and consumer interest rates, both Visa and Mastercard have been required to overhaul internal policies and strategic objectives, and to refine and clarify external communications.
Visa and Mastercard's emergence in the debit field, already well established across global regions, also introduces fierce competition for talent in this unique field. As the race toward mobile payments continues to take hold, the network companies face increasing urgency to identify strong technology and product focused executives to support their growth in all areas of payments innovation.
Many Global Card Manufactures focus their products and solutions on the increasing need and demand for security across all networked transactions, whether it applies to payments, telecommunications, the internet, travel or even healthcare.
Clients in the Card Manufacturing space are heavily invested in research and development, technology and security, and our clients in this field come to us with highly complex and very difficult search criteria.
Search work of this nature is highly specialised and definitive, demanding the support of a practitioner who has a deep understanding of payments and transaction services, and an intimate familiarity with the candidate pool.
There's a growing number of Information Management and Technology firms whose primary focus is on providing cutting-edge technology-based products and services for a diverse range of industries-servicing clients with intelligent product based solutions for payments, ID management, e-ticketing, mobile, transit, e-commerce, peer-to-peer payments. Organisations in this field not only offer product-based solutions, but consultancy or advisory services to support clients with testing, quality assurance, system protection, validation, and conversion initiatives.
There are a number of interesting and diversified associations, governmental bodies and non-profit organisations who maintain a specific focus on Payments and Transactions Services.
These organisations provide support and regulatory guidance to a broad spectrum of payments industry members. They bring forward a recognised forum in which to share ideas, act as an advocate, influence, educate and bring necessary change across all aspects of the payment eco-system.
As in any other business line, clients in this field face unique challenges in attracting and retaining committed and knowledgeable executives. Our clients benefit from the insight and have access to a pool of knowledgeable executives, who hail largely from the private sector and can often contribute immediate value to these types of organisations.
Prepaid Cards is a standalone business line which offers a convenient and alternative payment solution to the growing number of unbanked or credit risk challenged segments of the global population.
A burgeoning multi-billion dollar industry, the prepaid market is still relatively young and brings distinctive complexities in terms of adhering to, defining, regulatory compliance, transactional pricing and in implementing the technology and operational infrastructure necessary to facilitate secure and convenient payments.
Unlike stored value cards, prepaid cards typically link to an account or database which is used to authorise the payment, which in turn enables the cards to be used by an employer or governmental body to issue or distribute funds.
The prepaid market is growing rapidly across the globe as retailers, banks and governments explore the huge profitability potential of reaching unbanked customers. Demand for talent across the areas of product, marketing, technology, operations compliance, finance, risk and fraud in this area is fierce and we expect this market to be particularly active over the next few years.
Cash Management refers to a suite of services often offered to large business customers to support the handling and management of transactional volume and money flow. It also refers to the complex money management of consumer financial transactions across the retail branch network.
Services in this area include ACH, lockbox, check reconciliation, and balance reporting. A predominantly legacy business, this is a profitable and critical area of importance for the banks and the pressure to retain and attract talented executives in this area is high.
Independent companies also exist across the world to provide outsourced support to this high profile segment of banking infrastructure and the identification of experienced senior executive talent to manage and lead this business is critical to the ongoing success of this business.
EMA Partners has a long history of supporting clients in this area, and have successfully placed many key executives into C-level positions within the banking sector.
Most global banks and financial institutions have entire departments dedicated to treasury management which encompasses the management and safeguards the entire enterprise's holdings. Treasury management is responsible for maximising fiscal liquidity and for mitigating operational, financial and reputational risk.
In this area our clients are often seeking seasoned, strategic finance executives with an impeccable track record of success in heading up fiscal operations. Experience on the capital market side is also highly sought after, with clients often requesting access to a candidate pool that is knowledgeable in the areas of equity trading, foreign exchange and global money markets.
Hiring ongoing talent for the deposit side of banking remains a consistent and high priority need for our banking clients across the globe.
Over the past few years, our clients have placed particular emphasis upon identifying talent with strong product disciplines-ideally seeking tactical and strategic leaders who possess a proven track record of success across the areas of product management, new product development and product marketing.
Hiring talent that is complementary to our client's specific requirements remains a priority for EMA Partners. Our search practitioners ensure that they work closely with their client base in order to be attuned to their client's holistic corporate vision and strategic goals.
Electronic banking, also known as electronic fund transfer (EFT), uses computers and electronic technology as a substitute for checks and other paper transactions. EFTs are initiated through devices such as cards or codes that you use to gain access to your account.
Online banking is becoming an increasingly comfortable environment for consumers across developed nations, and the emergence of virtual banks brings a demand for talented payments executives who have a strong background in marketing, product, technology and operations.
In order to fully support and provide intensively targeted value to our clients, EMA Partners has developed a deep wealth of knowledge and experience to support our clients in the following areas of specialisation
Loyalty & Rewards programs are predominantly run by retailers, travel & hospitality organisations and services industries, such as restaurants, entertainment providers and sports & fitness facilities. These programs offer consumers an incentive to shop at specific stores, venues or service providers.
Similarly banks and retailers issue credit cards with an associated loyalty and rewards program which are specifically designed to promote and stimulate spends on a particular card.
In addition to the loyalty programs themselves, there exists an evolving and growing business line that is dedicated to the collection and analysis of market data and consumer spend intelligence. The information and data that is captured during each payment transaction, not only provides the retailer and issuing bank with information pertaining to their existing loyalty program's performance but can help assist the retailer in gaining a far deeper understanding of their customers' specific spending behaviour, preferences and habits.
The transactional details that are retrieved are also of vital relevance and importance to the issuing banks, as they provide valuable insights regarding the effectiveness of new and existing loyalty programs and enables the issuer and/or the merchant to devise highly targeted marketing campaigns aimed towards a consumer's unique and individual interests and shopping patterns.
As Loyalty programs increase in traction and popularity across the globe, consumers are consistently demanding more customisable and tailor-made rewards models and programs, which can provide them with enhanced control and benefits over the type of rewards that they may redeem. As a result, it is becoming increasingly important for businesses to have a deeper understanding of their consumer data so that they provide reward schemes that will entice, compel and ultimately retain their customers' loyalty.
The most mature and sophisticated loyalty markets are found in the UK, Australia and North America. As a result of their increasing popularity and the increasingly complex and integrated technology and infrastructural environment required to support these programs. The industry is witnessing a growing need for loyalty programs to outsource many of the strategic and operational components of their programs.
However, recognising the importance and sensitivity of this type of data and the importance of retaining and housing this competitive intelligence internally, our clients are frequently seeking talent with a strong marketing analytics background and a proven track record of success in the creation and implementation of data-driven loyalty and rewards programs.
Other functional areas that would be of keen interest would be technology (particularly platform and system integration), project management, marketing, product development and product management.
For clients in this space, the need to manage the collection and storage of personal and sensitive data creates a strong demand for talent that can engineer, build and support strong products and IT infrastructures that are designed to effectively reduce the risk of data breach and identity theft.
Cybersecurity or IT security refers to the effective management and protection of data while ensuring and maintaining its integrity. When a customer makes a payment at either a virtual or physical point of sale, the transaction must be reliable and secure. The customer must be confident that his/her personal details are not going to be shared or otherwise compromised.
The risks associated with a breach of individual personal data are devastating for the customer concerned, but as evidenced in the recent cases involving Target, Home Depot and Staples, companies that suffer a massive data breach involving millions of compromised card customers, can have crippling reputational and financial costs for the retailers, the issuers, the networks and the acquirers.
Alternatives to storing data on a card or within a mobile device often lead to exploring cloud base solutions, and the rising exploration of tokenisation and host card emulation (HCE). The quest for a more secure means of payment transaction began many years ago with the shift from a mag stripe to EMV and in many cases, the absence of chip and pin compliance stalls the progress and introduction of newer technologies that are dependent on the acceptance vehicles that an EMV environment promotes. The cost for a merchant to update POS devices and systems can be costly and change can be slow and cumbersome to implement as a result.
Cyber currencies, are increasingly entering the mainstream and are slowly beginning to shed their former reputation and association with unscrupulous money laundering and crime. But as more and more merchants sign up to accept these alternate currencies, and as consumers become more receptive to the idea (there are now more than 250 Bitcoin ATMs worldwide), regulation, compliance and fraud prevention strategies must be considered.
Despite the fact that today, cyber currency and other emerging payment disruptors are not required to comply with money laundering regulations and largely operate beyond the governance of central banks, as the currencies and technologies enter mainstream markets and as acceptance increases, we would predict that regulation, compliance, risk management and internal governance and controls will become a necessity and these emerging disruptors will need to look at their own internal talent in order to build out capabilities in these areas.
Aside from a clear need to hire strong technologically minded and innovative product engineers to drive and support the ways consumers are beginning to pay, clients clearly need to ramp up in the functional areas of security, fraud, identity management, data storage and customer authentication. For example, the recently introduced Apple Pay, uses biometrics as a security measure, as users must touch a fingerprint sensor to approve a transaction.
Voice recognition has also been around for years enabling simple functional commands, and perhaps in the future we will be able to pay a bill or make a payment, by simply talking into a device, but how those transactions are verified, supported and protected against fraudsters requires access to some of the brightest and sharpest talent to develop stringent risk mitigation strategies and compliance or regulatory standards that protect the consumer, the merchant and the payment provider.
The role of Business Intelligence is to collect and analyse information that can support and assist executives with superior and informed decision making. Within Payments and Transactions Services this area is also known as decision support or portfolio analytics.
As our clients in the Payments, Retail and Telecommunications space seek to understand the ways in which they can grow their businesses in both a profitable and sustainable way, the availability and access to quality data and information is critical, particularly when there is often an excess of information that threatens to confuse or overload the business with irrelevant, inconsistent or inadequate information.
Common uses of Business Intelligence & Analytics within the Payments and broader Financial Services sector would be to gain additional insights pertaining to a payments product or business line, such as understanding overall product or business performance, cost analysis, ROI, ancillary revenue potential, geographical information, consumer demographics, adoption rate, user experience, associated risk and/or potential fraudulent activity.
Raw data is most commonly mined or retrieved from internal or centralised data warehouses or data marts. It is then scrubbed, cleaned and/or manipulated before being transformed into actionable business insights and intelligence. Within Payments, the effective utilisation of business intelligence allows companies to accurately measure business performance and ROI, to create predictive models and to develop accurate reporting metrics.
The result of having a strong Business Intelligence & Analytics strategy in place can help an organisation to mitigate against unnecessary risks, ensure regulatory compliance and enables businesses to capitalise on the potential for improved revenue growth and stronger consumer retention.
Most lines of business both inside and outside of Payments benefit greatly from the introduction and utilisation of a robust Business Intelligence program, understanding that "Knowledge is Power". Effectively, the more an organisation knows and continues to learn about its own business performance and its competitive place in the market, the more likely they are to continue to succeed and flourish.
In conjunction with advancements in technology and the increasing sophistication of data mining tools, software engineering, analytical and decisioning architecture, the need for specialists to support the Business Intelligence & Analytics divisions of Payments continues to grow.
As a result, we are frequently in the market for intermediate and senior-level executives who possess strong skills in modelling, data mining, data analytics, data warehousing, MIS, information architecture, system integrity, risk management, decision support, pre-sales and partnership management.
Business Intelligence & Analytics is an area that we anticipate will continue to thrive and the search for strong talent in this space will only intensify as more companies and organisations recognise and acknowledge the need to strengthen their expertise in this field.
Mobile has arguably been one of the most discussed and anticipated emerging technology trends in payments over the past ten years. Already widespread in many parts of Europe and Asia, mobile payment solutions have been broadly positioned for adoption in developing countries as a prime payment tool for the unbanked for many years.
More recently mobile payment companies like M-Pesa have been instrumental in supporting additional infrastructural needs in countries like Kenya, providing its people with greater access to reliable energy and water.
As a result, mobile networks are beginning to become the predominant infrastructure onto which other services can be built. For example, M-Pesa's mobile technology and incremental payment plans now enable micro-financing plans for Kenyans to purchase clean water stations and solar energy kits that enable them to live off the energy grid.
In developed countries, Mobile Payments is increasingly gaining traction and acceptance with consumers as many financial services institutions, retailers and technology companies compete to offer different ways in which to turn your smartphone into a vehicle for payments.
Many of the simpler mobile payment solutions offer a mobile app, many of which have a tie-in loyalty program like the highly successful Starbucks app, while companies like LevelUp are using QR (quick response) codes to accept payment without a credit card at the POS.
A mobile wallet is a far more complex offering that typically requires the collaboration of multiple stakeholders in order to accept and facilitate payment on different platforms and networks using multiple products that can be accepted at multiple locations.
Consumers are looking for a ubiquitous product that is simple to use, secure and convenient and these solutions require participants of the payments ecosystem to partner and work together on an integrated offering. Google Wallet, in its initial iteration, failed to get off the ground and it remains to be seen whether Apple Pay's refusal to accept payment on multiple operating systems will be successful in gaining traction.
Meanwhile, retailers are attempting to build their own platform to offer a mobile commerce solution through a consortium of retailers known as MCX (Merchant Customer Exchange). P2P payments are also increasing in popularity, particularly with the younger generation as a way to split bills, borrow and lend money. Venmo's ability to compete with other innovative P2P companies like PayPal (which is now, in many ways, a legacy company) continues to be challenged because of an inability to effectively monetise its product.
This is a challenge that is frequently faced by many industry disruptors, particularly when the public becomes accustomed to receiving a service at little or no financial cost.
Disruption is occurring both inside and outside of core payments and Uber is an interesting and powerful example of a start-up that has created a significant impact on a legacy business. Positioning itself as a technology company as opposed to a taxi business has been a contentious distinction, as it has enabled Uber to operate outside of the industry's regulatory and governance models.
Airbnb is another example of a start-up that is operating outside of the traditional hotel and hospitality industry standards and controls, as its P2P business model places more accountability for service, security and risk mitigation into the hands of the individual homeowner who provides the service directly to the customer.
Disruption inevitably creates change, and organisations are increasingly re-examining the talent in place and recognising the need to create new capabilities and new positions that will allow for the necessary evolution of their business to support today's tech-savvy consumer.
The increased creation of new roles, such as Head of Mobile, Chief Digital Officer and Chief Data Scientist, is evidence of the re-evaluation of talent that is taking place within large corporations and illustrates a skill set gap that must be filled in order to compete in the mobile and digital era.
The demand for identifying the talent to support this rapidly growing mobile market is intensifying. Executives with strong technical and product engineering backgrounds remain in high demand as well as seasoned strategic and tactical business operators.
Most importantly of all, however, is the ability to manage change in environments that are increasingly volatile, ambiguous and unstable, and it is frequently this skill set that is often the hardest to find and assess.
EMA Partners practitioners pride themselves on staying abreast of new emerging payment trends & concepts and as a result, are ahead of the curve when it comes to identifying talent gaps within our client base. We ensure that our candidate database remains current and accurate and that we retain strong and positive relationships with our candidate pool.