Our case studies give you a better insight on our work processes and a preview of what to expect when we work together in close partnership. 

Case Study 1 Arbitration Associate International Law Firm

Our client, an international law firm, was hiring a mid-level arbitration lawyer. Attempts by the firm to attract a good quality dispute resolution lawyer with solid arbitration experience had proven difficult, given the limited supply of such specialists in Hong Kong.

Some months before the vacancy arose, an arbitration lawyer from the UK had registered with Star Anise. He had a desire to move back to Asia where he had previously spent some time working, and particularly as his partner relocated to the city. Knowing that arbitration roles in Hong Kong were rare and not having strong knowledge of the legal market, he registered early, in the hope that a suitable vacancy would arise later in the year.

"Attempts had proven difficult given the limited supply of such specialists in Hong Kong"

With training from a top tier international law firm and strong international arbitration experience in the Middle East and Asia, we were able to identify from our database this candidate as a key target for our client. We arranged an interview with the head of the dispute resolution team whilst the candidate was in Hong Kong on holiday. Further interviews ensued, including telephone interviews with various partners from overseas offices and interviews in the city where the candidate was currently residing.

An offer then followed, which the candidate accepted. 

Case Study 2 Head of Legal with MNC Regional Role

Our client, a multinational household retailer had briefed many agencies on a regional Head of Legal role based in Hong Kong. 
 
Despite the competition, we managed to find them the right candidate who had not only the right technical skills, industry and regional experience but also the right personality that they were looking for. When we were instructed, we got a full understanding of the role, team structure and report line and the type of person they were looking for and managed to secure them the right match. We also ensured a smooth interview process as well as a smooth on-boarding process.

Case Study 3 Finance Director, Asia International Advisory Firm

Our client, a leading international consultancy firm, was about to embark on a restructure of its Asia operations. Key to this was to ensure that the Chief Executive would have a highly experienced senior finance professional working closely with him to design a strategy for an orderly restructure and to take a lead on certain aspects of the restructuring. They needed someone who had experienced a similar situation in their work, was not shy to make tough decisions, and would be a commanding figure, a natural leader, in a rapidly changing environment.

"The role required a balance of serving the interests of the CEO and with the parent's board"

This assignment needed someone who was familiar with working in an international professional services environment and had the organisational and inter-personal skills to ensure a broad ‘buy-in’ from employees to the changes, as well as industry knowledge specific to the client’s business. The role required a balance of serving the interests of the CEO and with the parent’s board, where the global finance head sat. Our experience of working with finance directors, CFOs and other senior finance figures in Asia meant that we could identify certain candidates who had experience with the exact same industry and had undergone the changes that the client was proposing. Whilst there were multiple interviews, the process was swift and an offer that was within budget and had met the candidate’s expectations was achieved. 

Case Study 4 Business Developer International Professional Services Company

Our candidate had been working as a business consultant for a European firm, assisting their clients on their expansion plans into China.  Having studied a post-graduate degree in Law, the candidate wanted greater exposure to the legal industry. 
Initially, we arranged interviews for the candidate with international law firms but it became apparent that the candidate was more accustomed to a front line role in which she would have direct responsibility for sales lead generation and client relationship management, as opposed to having a more functional, back office role in a law firm.  

"...it became apparent that the candidate was more accustomed to a front line role"

Not long after, an international professional services consultancy was seeking a business development manager.  They needed someone with particular knowledge in the European or North American financial services or multi-national corporate market, and the ability to generate sales leads in providing tax, company incorporations, corporate services and other business consulting advice.  The client had difficulty finding a suitable candidate – most applicants they saw had business development management experience but very little multi-national western overseas companies exposure or genuine commercial flair.

With the candidate’s outgoing personality and proven natural ability to generate sales, combined with her legal education, we identified that the candidate had strengths and attributes that were particularly suited to this role.  Whilst not having direct experience in the corporate services field, this role presented the ideal opportunity for the candidate to utilise her strengths and grow into this role.  The client agreed, and after a number of rounds of interviews, an offer was given.