Finding Software Engineering VP for WarnerMedia - case study
Warner Media was an American multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate. It was headquartered in New York City, United States and had global film, television and cable operations.
Warner Media is now part of the Warner Bros Discovery Group of companies.
Through our existing network, we had a relationship with one of their senior technology executives, who was growing an additional team of software engineers based in the US. The team's key objective was to support one of their principal streaming platforms.
They needed to find a new head of software engineering with the drive to create a team from scratch rather than bringing someone in to take over an existing team. This was a unique opportunity to identify and develop a team of around 50 people from both within the business and from external sources.
This permanent role was based in New York and Vine Resources was engaged in working on a retained basis to conduct the search on their behalf. The first step was to spend some time with the customer to understand exactly what the requirement was for this head of software engineering. The job requirement and performance objectives were thoroughly reviewed and constructively challenged, before commencing the search.
Warner wanted someone with knowledge of the streaming industry and who had worked in the broadcast and media sector. This could also include some of the consulting or vendor partners in this space.
About 10 days later, we presented the customer with a market map of all the potential target individuals who met the criteria for their review. These individuals had the right skills and attributes and also were already living in the New York area or were thought to be willing to relocate.
The long list of approximately 60 names was discussed and reviewed with Warner, which was jointly narrowed down to about 20 targets.
The key to success was the fact that the role would give the candidate not just a lateral move, but a real career enhancement. This was an opportunity to grow from their current role to take on this strategic remit at Warner Media.
With the mandate to headhunt these people, conversations were started with the potential candidates. This included finding out what their perceptions were of Warner Media and its position in the market. The motivation of why the individual would consider a move from their existing role into this position was researched as a key element of the project.
A shortlist of 5 candidates was presented to the customer and they were so impressed that all 5 were interviewed. Subsequently, a series of 4 interview rounds were organised, which included a panel interview with senior executives as the final stage, and one was selected.
Vine Resources also supported the onboarding process for the role. They also ensured the individual had everything they needed for a successful start with the new role and organisation.