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Case Studies

Transport Planning Director



Global engineering, architecture and consultancy firm


Transport Planning Director


Transport and Infrastructure
Richard Simmonds
Partner, Industrials

Our client was a global engineering, architecture and consultancy firm employing 16,000 people worldwide. Its UK transport planning discipline had experienced a great deal of growth in new commissions but due to the fact that the team sat within the highways and development teams, it lacked its own structure and identity. We were charged with identifying a Transport Planning Director who would bring proper definition and dedicated commercial focus to the team whilst growing it as a standalone team within the transport division.

The successful candidate would play a pivotal role in the development of the transport business across both the UK and Europe, working across national and local developers, local and central government in addition to government agencies. The vision for the role was that it would integrate the team and drive a clear, holistic vision for the business unit across its workstreams.

Due to the client’s low profile across the transport planning environment, our search began by targeting their clients with a view to identifying both the firms and key individuals that were highly respected and recognized across the landscape. The successful candidate would need to demonstrate the necessary skills to be able to grow the business to a point where it is recognized as a credible player in the market.

This scenario led to a fairly narrow search campaign, where we focused on priority candidates within market-leading organizations. Consequently, we were able to identify and engage with five priority candidates for interview with the Managing Director, Transport with a highly experienced and respected individual emerging as the preferred candidate.

The scenario, however, became complicated due to the seniority of this candidate, who had been with his previous firm for over 30 years and meant that he would need to be brought in to the organization at a higher level than originally thought, requiring head office approval. Due to this hiatus, which spanned the Christmas period, we were obliged to engage in a great deal of candidate management in order to keep the preferred candidate warm whilst the internal process was ongoing.

Having finally appointed the candidate, we have become a trusted advisor to the Managing Director, Transport and have fulfilled a number of further mandates for the client.