Frequently Asked Questions

Questions From Clients (the Employers)

While it is similar to a recruitment agency in many ways, the differences can be startling:

  • A recruitment agency deals with the placement of personnel in your organisation – so do we.
  • A recruitment agency can offer extensive (and expensive) additional services such as skills testing, psychometric appraisals and the like – GreyHair sticks to its core business of introducing executives to organisations that need them. Quickly.
  • A recruitment agency deals with all levels of personnel – GreyHair focuses on the executive and managerial levels to provide both interim and permanent placements.
  • A recruitment agency goes to the marketplace and searches for someone to fit your requirements – GreyHair already has identified the potential candidates within the AIEA membership.
  • A recruitment agency can take weeks or months to find the right person, particularly for higher level positions – GreyHair usually has a shortlist within three days.
  • A recruitment agency charges a percentage of the total salary and benefits package and often additional costs for advertising, etc – GreyHair charges a low fixed fee with absolutely no additional costs.

Yes. The GreyHair agreement states “GreyHair works fast! In the unlikely event that we cannot meet your requirements, we will know within a week and the cost to you is zero. The fee will be fully refunded.”

… and …

“Within the first three months of the assignment, if the Candidate withdraws leaving the Client’s needs unfulfilled for any reason, GreyHair will replace the Candidate at no additional charge.”


That is your judgement to make as the hiring manager. You may be wondering if an older candidate is a good choice. You need to consider the experience and maturity being offered. It is said that an older worker, especially an executive, can more focussed, reliable and level headed. The Australian School of Business has a good paper on this subject entitled ‘The Silver Tsunami’.

Not in the same context that a recruitment agency does but it would be foolish to have GreyHair and an agency working on the same assignment at the same time and run the risk of paying the much higher agency fees as well as the GreyHair prepaid fee.

Either give it to GreyHair for a few days before opening it to the agency or give it to GreyHair once the agency has tried and failed.

Perhaps the term ‘GreyHair’ is misleading. It is meant to signify ‘experience, maturity, track-record’ rather than advancing years. All of our Candidates are drawn from the AIEA Membership of professional, accredited executives. For the record, the AIEA membership is grouped as so:

Under 50         23%

50 to 55          26%

56 to 60          25%

Over 60           26%

Over the past few years, the age spread has gradually been getting younger. This is symptomatic of the shifting demographics in the Australasian workforce as more executives embrace an interim lifestyle.

To maintain our low cost and speedy response, GreyHair avoids loading our service with actions that you may wish to undertake yourself.

 As part of the full-service recruitment service, GreyHair will undertaks candidate screening


There are two levels of recruitment service

  • Consultancy
  • Full Service

The Consultancy service is $4950 and the Full Service is $9900.

Questions From Compatriots (the Candidates)

The Compatriots can remain passive until GreyHair emails them an assignment opportunity; then they choose to accept it or not.

If you are not interested in the assignment or do not have the required qualifications, please do NOT respond.

Please add to your address book ‘white list’ to avoid future emails being sent to your ‘bulk’ or ‘junk’ folders.

GreyHair doesn’t promote individuals (as a recruitment agency would). Instead, we determine what skills the client needs and deliver those skills from the AIEA-Compatriot database. It is up to the Compatriots to ensure that their resumes depict their skills and experiences in the most favourable light.

For interim work, you will need an ABN/ACN (or be GST Registered in NZ) as the client almost certainly will want to contract with you business-to-business and you will need to be able to provide a tax invoice for your services. One of the reasons they seek interim executives is that they don’t want to add people to the payroll / headcount for short-term assignments.

If most of your revenue in a fiscal year is from just one source you must take steps to ensure you meet the ATO contracting guidelines. If you are not up to speed with this, ask Mal Walker for more information on how you can ensure compliance.

It is most painful if you don’t.

Some clients will mandate that the interim manager will be covered by insurance. As a general rule, insurance is recommended.

GreyHair does not offer you any insurance cover as you are not working for GreyHair or as a GreyHair sub-contractor in any way.

Isure Online offers attractive insurance cover to the AIEA members - see 


Nothing – ever! There is no joining or enrolment charge in becoming a GreyHair Compatriot and no ongoing annual fee.

This is because we source our Compatriots from the AIEA membership, where a fee is charged. AIEA allows this access as a flow-on benefit to its members.

Much like a recruitment agency, GreyHair makes its income by charging the hiring client a low, fixed fee to successfully introduce a Compatriot. 

There are no guarantees. You should see GreyHair as a supplementary conduit of opportunity to your networking and other activities.

The chances are that your next assignment you will find for yourself, probably having a drink with your peers at an AIEA event. AIEA also runs a dynamic jobs board solely for the benefit of its members.

With the AIEA database now into significant numbers we are assured of satisfying almost any client need.

The skills that are saleable to the Client are the ones that you have developed and honed over the past ten years or so. Remember that the primary qualities of a Compatriot are that s/he is overqualified and can hit the ground running.

Don’t think that you can use your membership in GreyHair to effect a career change.

Whatever you want.

GreyHair does not get involved in the negotiations between the Client and the Compatriot. 

GreyHair will not give you any guidance on the setting of your fees. We do not ask to know your daily rate and we avoid having a discussion with the Client on how much to pay. You know your industry and profession best.

We do suggest that you couch your fee quotations as a daily or weekly rate as a Client may see an hourly rate as an invitation to clock-watch or otherwise shave costs. The recruitment agency Hays runs an annual salary survey for Australia and New Zealand which you may find useful. Robert Walters and other agencies have similar surveys.

All you need to do on an on-going basis is to keep your resume refreshed and your AIEA registration current.

However, if you are successful in identifying opportunities for other Compatriots, everyone benefits and your profile is naturally raised with the GreyHair management as you become a GreyHair Affiliate.

Please make sure you read each email received from GreyHair and click on any links therein. This is our way of giving you essential information.

As some of the Compatriots operate their own consulting businesses and are active in the marketplace, GreyHair respects their wishes for confidentiality. This precludes us from offering or sponsoring breakfast meetings and other networking events.

However, AIEA already offers extensive networking events to its members

There is some good external sources of training.

Not always. Sometimes we make a decision that it would serve no purpose to send, say, a Sydney role to the Compatriots in Brisbane or Auckland when the client had stated that he will consider local candidates only. Also, in an urgent situation, we will poll the local Compatriots first and extend it only if we fail to get an immediate result. However, we sometimes pass a role past every Compatriot for a number of reasons –

  • We may have classified them as an Accountant but they have skills in IT Project Management
  • A Compatriot may see a role that doesn’t suit him but would be perfect for his cousin or a friend
  • We may have her in the Victorian database but she has decided to move to Brisbane in the near future

No; this is the opposite of what GreyHair does.

Our business model is predicated on meeting our client’s needs by providing the skills of an experienced interim or permanent executive that is immediately effective because s/he has done it all before. The only people we put up for a role are those that can demonstrate their track record in that field.

All of the GreyHair Compatriots are proven competent executives. The question is – what can you do to stand out?

Make sure that your resume is as good as it can be; there are old-fashioned resumes and modern, current resumes. Click the link for help.

Some Compatriots come from a sales and marketing background and are naturally good at promoting themselves; others have to work at it. You will have seen above that it is short-sighted to solely rely on another party (including GreyHair) to secure your income. Self marketing is the answer. There are many self help books on how to go about this and lots of useful information on the Internet.

The DISC report is playing an increasing role in the decision process of a hiring manager. A special Extended DISC report is provided free to each AIEA member.

There are two answers to this question.

  • If you think others would get a benefit from joining GreyHair as a Compatriot – and we all like to help our friends – just tell them about AIEA, how GreyHair finds jobs for AIEA members, and let them make up their own mind. They are at liberty to register there, just as you did. GreyHair does not pay for Compatriot introductions.
  • If you find a company that you think GreyHair could assist, tell the potential client a little about GreyHair and ask their permission to have Mal Walker contact them. Send Mal the contact details and, when the Compatriot is placed, you will be recognised as a GreyHair Affiliate and receive ten percent of the revenue as a thank-you. As the current GreyHair full service fee is $9000 plus GST, this 10% revenue share equates to $990 in your hand. 

GreyHair limits the Compatriot membership to current members of AIEA. These are people with senior executive experience. This is loosely defined as ranging from Project or Operations Managers to CEO roles and the assignments offered are within this range.

All the Compatriots are members because they seek interim or contract roles. However, a good number (around 40% or more) of the assignments either start as a permanent offering or end up as one. This will be clearly stated in the emailed Assignment Profile.


When you do see an attractive assignment opportunity, it is imperative that you respond immediately as almost all short-lists are filled within 72 hours. This speed of response is one of GreyHair’s major selling points and this is achieved by utilising the AIEA membership database.

If you are attracted to an assignment (interim or permanent) depicted in one of GreyHair’s emails, here’s the process:

  • Reply to the email within the first 12 hours, saying you are interested and would like further information
  • GreyHair will respond with additional information, including the client company’s name, web site and location details.
  • If you decide to apply for the position, respond within a further 12 hours. Your response should include your updated résumé together with a covering letter which addresses the client’s selection criteria.
  • GreyHair will take the applicant details to the client and keep you informed whilst the client determines the interview short list.

Wikipedia has a good definition which you can see here

Some Compatriots already have a DISC report and provide it as part of their application, believing that it gives them greater visibility. In fact, AIEA provides its full members (MAIEA, CAIEA and FAIEA) with an Extended DISC report to utilise as they see fit.

GreyHair has seen how hiring managers welcome such a report as a valuable resource when evaluating applicants.

It is interesting to note that (as at December 2010) less than 10% of Compatriots had a DISC profile as part of their résumé but over a third of the successful candidates (during  2010) did so. They are much more common now.

Think of it as a point of differentiation.