Interim Management

Interim Management

Exceptional interim managers with Practicus

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The right one, not just anyone

“Over seven years, Practicus has only ever provided me with good interim managers - other agencies get it wrong at least 50% of the time!"

CEO

An interim manager provides an immediate solution when you need additional leadership for a particular challenge. With only a limited engagement, many organisations find them to be the ideal support for their challenges. Whether that’s driving the next level of growth, leading transformation or managing periods of transition and instability.

Why Practicus for interim managers?

Practicus is a recognised leader in the provision of executive interim management services across the private and public sectors. In fact, our teams thrive on finding the perfect person to support you with your ambitions.

Ultimately, we will provide you with an experienced set of hands who you can trust to deliver on your challenge – from complex organisational challenges to individual change and transformation programmes. 

Our established practice has a strong network of active interim managers and a track record of delivering C-Suite placements, leaders and specialists across a variety of industry sectors and functions.

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A consistent record of excellence

Practicus is a leading provider of top talent. 

For over 10 years, we have been one of the highest ranking providers in the annual market survey conducted by the Institute of Interim Management (IIM). For the last four years we have featured in the Top 3, rising to 1st in 2020.*

 

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Sam HaWKINS

Director

Looking for interim management jobs?

Check out our candidate section with links to our latest assignments:

Interim manager guide

one of the most misunderstood terms of the hiring world

Interim management involves some of the most senior, trusted and capable talent available. Yet many HR and Procurement functions have a habit of treating it like they do unskilled temporary recruitment. An interim manager is more than just a ‘posh temp’ but given the finite nature of assignments – and the relatively low level of understanding of this niche – it’s clear why the confusion arises.

Contents

What are interim managers?

An interim manager is a proven manager who provides their skills for a limited period of time to achieve a particular goal. Typically, this is to successfully navigate a period of transition, crisis or change within an organisation.

For this reason, there need not be any ‘gap’ in the management team before engaging one. While some do often cover a role while a permanent hire is being sought, they are typically used as an ‘addition to’ incumbent managers rather than as an ‘instead of’. This is because it is their specific expertise and experience that is being sought in connection with the particular challenge or problem. It may be that the right combination does not exist internally, or perhaps cannot be spared, or equally a more seasoned individual is justified because of the importance of the assignment.

Find out more about what is an interim manager?

What is an interim executive?

An interim executive is a type of interim manager whose experience and expertise is at the executive-board level.

Of course, nearly all of them operate at or close to this level. But even the ones who do not, they typically have some experience reporting into board-level and working with and advising its members within their field of expertise. 

Consequently, some do not see a meaningful distinction between the two terms and for many they will often use them interchangeably.

Find out more about executive interim management

How do you define interim manager?

To define the term interim manager, you can break it down into its constituent parts:

  • Interim means ‘time intervening’ and its use in English can be traced back to the 1560s. It’s from the Latin adverb of the same name that means “in the meantime, meanwhile.” In modern usage, it denotes the time between now and a point in the future.
  • Manager means ‘one who directs or controls’ and is a term that stretches back to around the same time, the 1580s. It gained a more specific sense in 1705 as ‘one charged with conducting a house of business or public institution.’

Hence, the term means a person charged with conducting an organisation (either in part or altogether) for a particular period of time.

Find out more about interim manager meaning

What is the role of an interim manager?

An interim manager role usually takes the form of an assignment with a particular goal and timeframe for its completion. It is approached with a project mindset of ‘I am here to accomplish these things by this date and then my work is done.’

However, as well as the main objective, it is often expected that smaller ancillary goals are accomplished to provide support to the organisation.

Find out more about what is an interim manager role

What are the benefits?

Interim managers provide a unique set of benefits and advantages due to their individual experience and expertise and the nature of the contracting method. For companies requiring a seasoned manager who knows how to make a real difference, but do not need them long-term, this can be an ideal solution. In particular, there are benefits as an answer to stretched management resource and to address expertise deficiencies for a project or period of instability.

The main benefits are laid out in our blog: what benefits interim manager

Key skills of an interim manager

The interim management skills needed by an organisation can vary enormously. However, there are core competencies that are expected of all. This is partly due to the nature of the work. For example, deploying quickly into an unfamiliar setting and instilling confidence with stakeholders is a must-have ability.  There are others too.  

If you want to know more about the sklls, competencies and expertise needed, visit our page on the subject: interim management skills needed.

What is the ROI?

There are a number of way to calculate the ROI of an interim but perhaps the simplest is this:

a = all the directly attributable net financial benefit arising from the assignment

= the cost of the assignment, e.g. day rate and any related fees

The ROI calculation is:

ROI = 100 x (a-b)/b

(ROI is expressed as a % so for ease ‘100 x’ is added to the equation above)

Find out more in our blog post ROI of an interim manager

'People also ask' questions

Here are some of the common ‘people also ask’ questions from google searches with answers provided by our team. 

How long is interim manager?

How long an interim manager role will be very much depends on the assignment. Generally speaking, it will be somewhere between 6 months and 18 months. 

It’s rare to find an assignment shorter than 3 months and while some assignments will go on for a year or two, much longer is less common because it blurs the line between a contract resource and a permanent post-holder. 

This is particularly an issue in countries such as the UK, which have laws against what it is describes as ‘disguised’ employment. This is where a contract role is used instead of permanent employment without good cause. There are several reasons for these laws but the main one is concern that the government is not getting the tax and other revenues that it believes it should. Many dispute this. Nevertheless, in terms of the practicalities of avoiding falling foul to this legislation, see our guides: 

Do interim managers get paid?

Yes. Yes they do get paid. How much depends on a number of market factors related to your particular skills and level of expertise, its relative scarcity, your track record, the severity of the client challenge, available client budget and so on.

Most are comfortable negotiating but there are a number of benefits to professional representation – not least the level of experience around negotiation a provider puts at your disposal and the ability for you to go into the assignment untainted by that process.

Do interim positions get paid more?

Interim positions do tend to pay more than permanent positions. But stop! That’s not the whole story. They do not gain the same benefits as a permanent employee and many of these are financially significant. 

There’s no paid holiday by the client, no pension contributions outside what they pay in themselves and rarely a bonus scheme. In addition, they will need to find a new job much more often than a regular employee so there will be periods where they are not paid. 

From the client’s perspective, not only do they avoid shouldering the costs of these benefits, they also avoid paying employer’s national insurance, which can be sizeable on senior talent. In fact, it is much more cost-efficient than many organisations realise.

See our blog post: why interim management is much less costly than you think

Can interim be permanent?

It’s reasonably common for interims to be invited to take up a position permanently. Many do not take up the offer for the simple reason that it is a career choice for them. They do not want to be a permanent post-holder.  

Instead, they want to move on to new assignments with new challenges rather than what they would see as being ‘stuck’ in a permanent role. That said, sometimes they do take the client up on the permanent offer. This may be because the role on offer is particularly attractive or because their personal circumstances have changed. 

Should I put interim position on resume?

We would advise you to put interim positions on your resume / CV. Just make sure that they are all clearly marked as such. Some prefer to keep multiple versions of their resume / CV – one that goes into greater detail on contract roles and one that provides more attention to their permanent work. They can then provide the most relevant version for the job in question. 

More Interim manager resources

As one of the leading service providers, we’re proud to provide you with answers to some of the most common questions around interim managers.

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