Korn Ferry (NYSE:KFY) Q1 2021 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Sep 03, 2020 • 12:00 pm ET

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Korn Ferry (NYSE:KFY) Q1 2021 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

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Q & A
Operator
Operator

[Operator Instructions]

Our first question will come from the line of George Long [Phonetic]. Please go ahead.

Analyst
George Long

Hi, this is George. Good morning. You indicated that July new business trends were down 5% year-over-year, whereas August new business was down 6% year-over-year. Could you talk about what contributed to the moderation in the piece of improvement in new business trends overall and perhaps by segment?

Executive
Gary D. Burnison

If you look, the good news is, obviously, the headline numbers on the corner -- on the quarter were not spectacular, but the world stopped in April, and you're going to see that with GDP. But what we have seen is a very steady upswing in new business. And as Bob indicated, July was better than June, which was better than May. So that's really good news. And when we look at August, overall, we were down about 6%. Executive Search was down 18%, if you just isolate the month of August. And Consulting and Digital were actually up 10%. So I think that when you look at the platform as a whole, the business is reacting almost in line with what we thought it would do.

And when you look at the drivers of Consulting and Digital, I would say, I would point to, number one, transformation. And the fact that every company -- different work needs to get done and work needs to get done differently. So every company in the world is going to have to reimagine their business, and that starts with the organization and its people. And when there's transformation, there's usually a pause, then the next step is with people. So we've certainly seen that. We're starting to see early signs of that in our Consulting and Digital business. I think the other broad stroke I would put on the new business trends is our D&I business, which is before this was about a mid -- eight-figure business. And we've seen over the last few months, about a 50% uplift in how we can help companies not just deal with diversity, because that's a fact, but more importantly, how you deal with inclusion, which is a behavior.

So I would point to those two, and then I would point to one other, which ties to transformation, which is around developing a workforce and creating a more learning agile workforce that can operate in a digital world with an inclusive ethos. So those are, I think, the broad strokes on the business. You're seeing, obviously, an uptick in search, which is good. And then from an industry standpoint, it's much like you would probably intuitively think the consumer area has seen improvement, but not as much as, say, life science. Life science has been, as you would guess, certainly stronger. And so those would be the broad strokes. Obviously, energy has been challenged over the past few months. But that would be my kind of 38,000-foot view.

Analyst
George Long

Got it.

Executive
Robert Rozek

Yeah, hey George, just so you know, on the wise counsel of