Why We Don't Do Executive Search

Nov 16, 2021

“Oh, so you do Executive Search?”

Our team was fortunate enough to spend a few days in Las Vegas for MJBizCon 2021 and MJUnpacked in October 2021.

Coming out of that trip the team got together and conducted a debrief. The first observation we had was the number of times we were lumped in with Executive Search and Traditional Recruiters. This was actually beyond delightful for us as an upstart looking to disrupt a tired space- it affirmed rather than discouraged.

Is there anything better than your exact target audience giving you the opportunity to differentiate yourself? We think not. That said, we didn’t get to talk to everyone and our Finance Team vetoed the idea of going door to door, so we settled on writing down why we don’t do Executive Search or follow the “traditional recruiting” model.

Before we started EzHire Cannabis, we identified two core problems that the industry was likely to face in the coming years.

  1. An abundance of job growth - primarily focused on the entry to mid-level.
  2. A workforce lacking industry knowledge - particularly to fill customer-facing or plant-touching roles (budtender, dispensary manager, delivery driver, cultivation assistants) at the levels.

We also identified that there was not a palatable solution to this oncoming challenge for businesses in the industry. Here were the options:

  1. Work with a company that specializes in Executive Search
  2. Hire an in-house recruiter or work with a traditional external recruiter

On the surface, you might be thinking, “those seem like pretty good options to me.” The problem is neither of those solutions are tailored to the requirements of a scaling cannabis business.


Executive search focuses on executives (typically C-Level).

Traditional recruiting is expensive. For simplicity's sake, we’ll just say that recruiting takes 15% of your hires first-year salary, though it can be much higher. As a result of the pricing structure, most traditional recruiters focus on jobs with a base salary of $50,000+.

All that said, we found our niche - a rapidly growing and underserved marketplace.

The problem we are solving at EzHire is not finding candidates. Quite the contrary, if you have hired in cannabis for a role like budtender or cultivation assistant we do not have to explain this- you get plenty of candidates. In fact, the issue is often you get too many and simply are unable to process them efficiently. That is what we solve for.

The traditional hiring funnel consists of:

  1. Generating Applicants - through job boards like Indeed
  2. Candidate Screening - reviewing resumes, cross-referencing LinkedIn Profiles, investigating past employers, conducting initial phone screens
  3. Scheduling Interviews - often referred to as “herding cats” this part involves syncing schedules up between your internal stakeholders and the prospective new hire
  4. Conducting Interviews - asking the right questions to determine the best fits
  5. Making the Offer - determining desired start date, negotiating salary, completing all the paperwork

Based on our research, a budtender job posting via just Indeed in even a smaller market will receive, on average, 125 applicants within a 24 hour period. That’s a lot of time spent screening. Hiring Managers, which in the cannabis industry tend to also be business owners, report spending between 10-15 hours per week on the hiring process when they have an urgent opening to fill.

So, you really don’t do Executive Search?

No. We really don’t do Executive Search.

EzHire was designed to streamline high-volume hiring in the cannabis industry. If you need to hire 5+ entry to mid-level roles in the cannabis industry, we are the solution.

We have built the systems to optimize the following steps for our clients:

  1. Syndication of Jobs via Job Boards and our proprietary database
  2. Curation of applicants. We eliminate the time-consuming screening process
  3. Schedule coordination between candidates and internal stakeholders

Got it, why?

The number of legal cannabis jobs has increased by nearly 300% since 2017.

The overwhelming majority of those jobs have been entry to mid-level positions. These numbers only factor in plant-touching businesses- excluding ancillary businesses like technology solutions.

The average interview-to-hire ratio is 4:1. If we assume 70,000 of 77,300 jobs added in 2020 fit these criteria, that would mean (conservatively) 280,000 candidates were interviewed to fill these roles. That is a massive time investment for a scaling business.

We believe that our value to a cannabis business in reducing this time investment is paramount to their success.

Okay, I see your point. How do you do this?

It all starts with your onboarding. We gain insight into your business objectives, collect all the necessary information to build the aforementioned applicant pool and get to work.

From there, all applicants are put through a customized video interview process. Your Customer Success Manager reviews those video interviews and provides you with only the best potential fit candidates for review.

When you see a candidate you like, you let your Customer Success Manager know and we get the interview scheduled.

It’s that simple.

Oh yeah, and all this is done with transparent flat-rate pricing.

Want to learn more? Click here to connect with us to see if it’s a good fit for your business.

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