Harper Harrison in the USA

Alana Cumming

By Alana Cumming

12 Jul 2022

4 min read

Harper Harrison in the USA

Harper Harrison is not new to the USA. Our first placement in the States dates back to 2016, just ten months after we had opened the doors and we have consistently done business there ever since. 


However, in 2019, following an upturn in demand, we made a conscious decision to double down on the region and make it a key strategy for future growth. Whilst Covid hit and presented a challenging period for us and for many businesses out there, it really helped us further shape the brand and provide us with the clarity required to help with those US growth plans. 


The changes were implemented to make the business even more robust and to provide a platform for ambitious yet achievable growth post-Covid. 


Four pillars of Harper Harrison.


We defined four clear pillars for future growth across all regions: 


  • Advanced Technology team - Focused on full project lifecycle recruitment within specialist sectors such as Data Centers, High Tech Manufacturing, Life Sciences, Healthcare, and Logistics. 

  • Real Estate - Land Acquisition,  Development, Project Delivery & Asset Management across all property sectors. 

  • Engineering Consultancy - Civil, Structural, Mechanical & Electrical Engineering across Infrastructure and Property. 

  • Cost & Project Management -  Specialist project expertise across all property sectors. 


Value Proposition in the USA. 

We were very clear to clients and to candidates that some of the US team (due to US Embassy closures) were based in the UK during 2020 and 2021. We worked very hard to build relationships with some of the most exciting organisations across our respective markets. By doing this, we are able to bring candidates the most exciting opportunities on an exclusive basis. Opportunities with clients who were values-focused and shared our own approach to being ‘people first’. 


We also developed a unique solution-led value proposition under our partnership model, which we believe differentiates us from competitors, and offers clients something they have never received before from any recruitment service provider. 


Our partnership model fundamentally takes ownership and accountability for delivering complex recruitment solutions. Whilst we deliver those solutions, we are also able to provide clients significant amounts of data with commentary, which can be used to help form or adapt hiring strategies across their business. This data has also been proven to help and support decisions relating to the retention of staff which can help lower attrition levels amongst our clients. 


It’s recruitment done properly. Maturely the consultancy element is taken very seriously. We believe the vast majority of recruitment practices on offer are simply flawed and don’t provide anywhere near the service levels that clients not just expect, but NEED to achieve their goals in such a competitive market. 


The repeat business of this model exceeds 90%, and the remaining clients have all signaled their intent to use the model in the future. 




Since the changes, the results have been dramatic. Our 2021 figures represented the best performance from the brand since its inception. With 2022 following the same strong performance and is on course for 100% growth, and 150% growth across the US teams. 


The headcount has also risen with the brand, increasing headcount by over 50% in 2022 with further hires already secured for Q3. 


Growth plans.


I always find this tough as a service-centric business to talk so specific about growth. We never compromise our values on service and that feeds into who we hire. Therefore, if we can’t identify those people with aligned values, we won’t hire! I also don’t normally aim for head-count targets as it can just become a bit of a vanity thing and it’s worth little! 


However, to make things simple, the Harper Harrison four pillars easily allow us to scale to 50 people as a starting point for a short-term target. And that genuinely doesn’t scratch the surface of what is achievable; it just feels like a good milestone to have in mind. At the current rate of growth, that would be achievable in 2023. Beyond that, I know our US team can go so much further. 




Our US teams led by Mark Gowdy in NYC (Advanced Technology), Mike Tobin in Austin (Engineering Consultancy), and Matt Thomas (Data Center specialist) have a combined tenure at Harper Harrison of over 10 years. They have outstanding personal values and are exceptional recruitment professionals who care about their craft. 


The growth of the region is very much in safe hands in terms of quality. 

If you want to be part of our growth and the exciting opportunities that will follow, reach out to our Harper Harrison Team today at  info@harperharrison.com   


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