“Katrina has placed me in two HR Director roles in Financial Services over the years. Both roles have been a perfect fit for me – and I would like to think the organisations I became part of have been happy too. I really don’t think I would have found either of these opportunities or been successful in pursuing them, without Kat’s involvement. Not only is Katrina personable, professional, responsive and easy to work with, she is also extremely focused on getting the right outcome for candidates and firms alike. It is clear that Katrina carefully considers not just skills and experience but also overall fit, when she matches candidates to roles. She has actually put me in front of very few of her clients, but with a very high success rate – this tailored approach makes her unique and an invaluable resource for candidates and firms. Once you have been put forward for a role something that Katrina does extremely well is brief you on what to expect in terms of process and each of the people you are meeting. She also solicits and provides very constructive and productive feedback and is very clear on where one stands in a process. This means that as a candidate you are able to perform at your best through the assessment process, and also that there are few surprises at offer stage. That is helpful to both candidates and firms and means the process is quicker and smoother at the final stage. In my experience, Katrina represents the client she works for, and the role, incredibly accurately to you as a candidate. I have also always felt 100% confident that I am well (and accurately) represented by her as a candidate, partly because Katrina really understands the HR space and partly because she builds long term relationships with her candidates and gets to know them very well. Finally, I really admire Katrina’s forthrightness and ability to get to the point quickly and get stuff done, whilst remaining personable and supportive at the same time. I regularly recommend Katrina to my peers both from a candidate and a hiring perspective. ”

Mica Ross, Head of Human Resources, Numis Securities

"Jamie has been a great partner throughout the entire interview and hiring process. There are times when working in different time zones can be challenging but our partnership proves working globally works even during a pandemic. During the challenging time the world is in, Jamie continued to stay present ensuring I was informed on where BNY Mellon was in the hiring process. This was a great comfort when wondering if the position was moving forward. Jamie was professional in managing both his relationship with the client and me, as the candidate. I appreciate his honesty, insights and continued support. Jamie is very knowledgeable in the Rewards space and thoroughly prepared me during the interview and contract process. I would recommend Jamie and Oakleaf for anyone looking for the next step in their Rewards career. "

- Cindy Lukas, Global Head of Benefits, Bank of New York Mellon

“Lucy is my go to recruiter when I am considering a career move. Not only does she have an excellent network across the Reward and Financial Services industry, but she takes time to understand what I am looking for and filters out anything unsuitable. She has worked especially hard and applied lateral thinking in securing my next move, in what is a really difficult market. Lucy has impeccable values as a recruiter and balances the needs of the candidate with those of her clients perfectly. I could not recommend her more.”

Olivia Herbert, Group Reward Specialist, Quintet Private Bank

"They were really personable and listened to me. Their market knowledge and intelligence was second to none. Their advice and guidance was amazing and were not afraid to push back on me when my ideas went astray. I am very much indebted to Oakleaf Executive. They are the only consultancy that I have felt actually cared about their candidates as much as their clients. It's a long term relationship to be built on. A huge heartfelt thank you. "

Kay Pumfrey, Global HR Director, Financial Services

“I have been an Executive Interim via Oakleaf Executive for over 18 months, and from placement to contract renewals, to helping me navigate IR35, they have been fantastic. The whole team are always on hand to offer any support when I need it. Oakleaf Executive values long term relationships, and this is what they have built with me over the period. They check in with me regularly and are at the end of the phone when I need them, as an interim I couldn’t be in safer hands. ”

Emma Calvert - Change Management, Organisation Effectiveness & HR Implementation Lead, Old Mutual.

"Jamie has been exceptional throughout the process of my current move. From the initial approach, through the interview process, to the finalisation of the contractual details, he has been highly professional, demonstrated honesty and integrity at all times and remain constantly engaged. He balanced his relationship between client and candidate very well, which has not always been my experience when dealing with others in this field. He provided good background detail ahead of interviews, & was very supportive to me. I felt he went the extra mile for me throughout what has been a lengthy process, and I would not hesitate to recommend him to contacts within the industry, and I look forward to continuing to work with both Jamie & Oakleaf going forward in my new role. "

Simon Constantine, Managing Director of Regional Compensation, Bank of New York Mellon

“Oakleaf take a very human approach to managing you as a candidate or client. As a candidate you feel supported, informed and given honest feedback. From a client perspective this gives great comfort as to how prospective candidates will see your brand.

Consultants provide a thorough brief before interviews covering off all aspects from approach the interviewer will likely take, to characters involved. They take time to listen to what the client is really looking for in a candidate and carefully match you, rather than sending a stream of cvs that just boost numbers.

Oakleaf then sensitively manage the offer and negotiations and provide follow up to both candidates and clients.

Outside of the recruitment process Oakleaf maintain close relationships and are always on hand for advice or updates on the market.

They are a pleasure to work with.”


"Oakleaf, and Katrina, were recommended to me and after an initial email introduction Katrina quickly followed up and arranged an initial meeting. From the first meeting, I felt Katrina listened to our needs – both the specifics of the role, but also what the business is trying to achieve. Having worked with a number of executive search firms, Katrina demonstrated that she wasn’t following a cookie cutter approach but got under the skin of what I was looking for, and as importantly why. Katrina operated with both pace and diligence, keeping me regularly informed and flexing her communications to fit with my needs. She was ruthless with only putting forward candidates who would fit the bill and at no point did I feel that I had wasted my time or the candidates time, ensuring expectations on role and package were clear from the outset. This enabled the process overall to run smoothly for all and have a successful outcome. I also enjoyed all my conversations with Katrina – it never felt like a chore… I would absolutely recommend Katrina and Oakleaf"

Sonia Davies – CEO, Scott Dunn

“Oakleaf Partnership have been a valuable talent acquisition partner and their service has always been excellent. Their understanding of the business needs and culture of our organisation has enabled them to provide us with high calibre applicants. They have always been professional, honest and reliable and I would not hesitate in recommending them to anyone. In particular, it has been a pleasure working with Katrina who I highly recommend as a professional, diligent and extremely competent senior consultant who helped us find the right talent and identified critical talent for our organization.”

Grant King – TD Securities

“I was referred to Katrina Stewart when my organization was looking for a Head of Human Resources. Katrina immediately grasped the role and the complexity (< 200 employees yet operating out of 10 offices around the globe). She sourced and presented candidates in line with the recruitment process we discussed at the beginning, showed her ability to identify candidates who at first glance looked questionable but actually have the potential to move an HR organization forward and assume the all praised business partnership role. She managed the negotiation process all the way to contract signing. We would like to thank Katrina for her great support.”

Lisa Ehrle - Managing Director of Capital Dynamics

"I have worked with Richard and Oakleaf for some years and have complete confidence in all the Oakleaf team. I have valued not only their HR knowledge and expertise but also their business perspective."


"Will is an unquestioned leader in recruitment for immigration professionals. He has an extraordinary knowledge of the industry and its key players, and his knack for recognising talent and locating vacancies is exceptional. For nearly a decade he has brought some of the best and brightest people I’ve ever worked with. Will is a pleasure to work with. I recommend him without reservation."

Jonathan Davis - Senior Manager (Immigration Services) at Deloitte

"Oakleaf provided an excellent, professional and open response to my request to work together to source and secure a new global Head of HR for Henderson. Excellent in the quality and diverse backgrounds of the candidates that they sourced and the in-depth analysis on each candidate; professional in how they dealt with me, Henderson and the candidates; and open in the ease in which we were able to discuss the profile of the role, the candidates and agree on the shortlist and final selection. The fact that we recruited the existing interim head of HR is itself a testament to Oakleaf. They presented each candidate equally and fairly, whilst being incredibly helpful in identifying the relative strengths of each candidate, but did not push for a result. As well as excellent service, I enjoyed working with Oakleaf and would recommend them to others."


"I have worked with John and Oakleaf Partnership as a candidate during the recruitment process for both my current and previous roles as well as a recruiting manager.

My experience of both situations has been hugely positive. I've found John to be highly professional, responsive and John demonstrates a full understanding of both the UK, EMEA and Global payroll recruitment market and the way in which the payroll profession is evolving.

As a candidate, I found the contact and feedback during the recruitment process to be excellent. While as a recruiting manager, I found that John was able to provide the strongest range of strong CVs that demonstrated a full understanding of my requirements within a very short timeframe."

Timothy Reed - Director Global Payroll

"I was in contact with a number of search firms.  Oakleaf was one of the few who were proactive, professional and genuinely caring.  Emma Castillo was the epitome of this during a robust process to get my new job.  She was always available, offered objective critique and useful personal opinion and I felt very looked after from start to end.  If only all search consultants were like her."

Head of Talent – International Tech firm

“Oakleaf and Emma provided an excellent and professional search to help us  secure a new global Head of HR EMEA.   They listened to the brief and provided in-depth analysis on each candidate they sourced. They were professional in how they dealt with us and presented each candidate equally and fairly and were incredibly helpful in identifying the relative strengths of each candidate.  I would highly recommend Emma and Oakleaf Executive."

Global Head of Talent Acquisition – Asset Management

"When conducting my job search it became apparent to me that Jamie was the pre-eminent recruiter in the Reward space. His connectivity across candidates in the market was highly impressive. I consider myself to have a very good and diverse network of contacts within the reward profession and almost all of them know of, and interact, with Jamie in the course of their professional lives – whether recruiting for their own team, conducting their own job search, or just keeping in contact with him for market updates and in case the right career opportunity should arise. This speaks extremely highly of his range of contacts and network in the Reward profession. Jamie has also demonstrated the best knowledge, I have seen from a recruiter, of understanding the specifics of roles and the dynamics of the organisation and the Reward teams that the positions are arising within. I found it refreshing that there was not a “hard sell” from Jamie to push candidates towards every role that comes to market, but instead a more targeted and refined approach to roles. He takes time to understand the skills and specifics of each individual, and this patience and longer-term view with candidates is a mature and, undoubtedly, successful approach. Anecdotally, I also heard from my new employers that they were impressed with the organisation, professionalism, time and effort that Jamie applied to the search for the role that I filled last year."

James Butler – Director of Reward - Bank of Montreal

"We started working with Jamie to try and help us find a new lead for Global reward and HR Services. Reward roles are always in high demand and notoriously difficult to find; and in addition we were looking for someone who could lead our agenda against a context of fast global growth, modernising an inconsistent set of processes and transforming our reward offering for a future generation.

Jamie spent time with us understanding this context and probably more importantly wanted to really try and understand that very difficult part of the search; cultural fit. In doing this it meant that he was able to identify both technical skills and behaviours we were looking for. This meant that the candidates he found were broadly on brief, and after each interview wanted a full debrief on what was good and not so good. All of this culminated in us landing a candidate who brought the right experiences, right behaviours and also had lots of potential too. Jamie helped us through the offer process and even took time to have lunch with him once he was onboard.

Our candidate has been absolute hit across the business and within the first six months was leading a revolutionary multi-million pound reward project to successful completion on time and budget! Thanks Jamie. You absolutely found us the right person for Abcam!"

Nick Skinner – SVP of HR – Abcam plc

"Having first met John 6 years ago it was apparent that his approach to payroll recruitment was different and that his intentions to dominate the Executive Payroll Market were for real.

6 years on and John is now the leading recruitment figure within the Executive Payroll Market space and his knowledge and network across Financial & Professional Services in unrivaled.

His understanding of the payroll market is phenomenal and has an in-depth knowledge of UK and Global payroll, systems, compensation and benefits and the close links to Reward put him at the very top.

John has worked with me as both client and candidate and has never failed to produce what I’ve been looking for and has the best candidates and jobs on the open market.

His by far and away the best consultant that I have worked with and have no hesitation in recommending John and his services"

Mike Webster - Global Payroll Manager

"Over the last year we have used Lucy extensively for Reward hires into our Firm. We have exclusively partnered with Lucy and Oakleaf since we have always found them to be great partners and they understand our mandates: the profile and characteristics of candidates that we were seeking. Lucy has serviced us very professionally and from my observations has an extensive network and varied routes to market to source candidates. The effort to understand our Firm, our culture and what differentiates our roles from peers was time well spent by Lucy. We appreciated the simplicity she has brought to the recruiting process."

James Butler Director, Human Resources Head of Performance, Rewards & HR Operations (PR&O) International