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Almost 25 Percent of Companies Hiring Execs, with IT Firms Leading the Way

executive-hire-11101302 Credit: Dreamstime.com

Despite an uncertain economic climate, a new study finds that nearly a quarter of businesses plan to hire new leaders to help them navigate the murky conditions.

According to CareerBuilder's nationwide survey, 23 percent of employers expect to add executive-level employees over the next six months.

Leading the way, the survey reveals, are information technology companies , with 35 percent of them reporting they'll soon be filling top positions.

Nearly a quarter of businesses in other industries — including health care, sales, professional and business services, financial services, and leisure and hospitality — also said they expect to recruit executives in coming months.

"Companies have a perpetual need to attain competent, agile senior leadership," said Brent Rasmussen, president of CareerBuilder North America, in a prepared release. "At no time is this more important than during an uncertain economic recovery."

The survey of more than 2,600 hiring managers and human resources professionals also found that a number of companies approach recruiting for new leadership positions as more than an internal task.

Nearly 1 in 5 businesses surveyed prefer to look externally when filling positions, while half place equal emphasis on internal and external candidates.

Twenty percent of employers said they look for a candidate with at least an MBA when recruiting executives. Additionally, the research found that the average executive is at least 41 years old, 29 percent are older than 50, and 26 percent are younger than 40.

According to the survey, employers also look for candidates who have a proven ability at solving problems,  are adept at motivating others, and show creativity and experience in different areas.


Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based freelance writer who has nearly 15 years experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.