For most job vacancies, a role is advertised, interested parties apply, interviews are held and an appointment is made.
It's a method Manchester United is currently using to fill a number of roles, such as a relationship manager and staffing manager, with the help of a recruitment website that describes itself as “executive career service for high caliber professionals.”
But the process of appointing a football manager remains rather ad hoc, none more so than in the case of David Moyes, who has had –- as baptisms of fire go - quite a grilling since succeeding Alex Ferguson at the helm of one of the world's biggest clubs.
Already out of the domestic FA Cup, United failed to grasp the chance to reach the League Cup final on Wednesday after a slapdash performance against lowly Sunderland.
More worrying for the 20-time English champions is that Moyes' team have been well off the pace in the Premier League.
Seven losses in 22 games have left United 14 points behind leaders Arsenal, and Sunday’s defeat at Chelsea effectively ruled the defending champions out of the title race.
But United are also six points behind fourth-placed Liverpool -– seven if you factor in the Anfield club’s vastly superior goal difference –- so even qualification for the European Champions League next season could be a push for Moyes’ side unless they win this season’s tournament.
Many reasons have been given for United’s sluggish form –- a mediocre squad bequeathed to him by Ferguson, a summer transfer window strategy that at times bordered on the farcical and the loss of the Old Trafford “fear factor.”
Journalists, fans and other Premier League managers have rallied round Moyes, arguing that, as United did with Ferguson, the Scot should be given time.
They argue that Moyes’ track record at Preston and Everton was one of steady improvement, and that he is the right man for the job.
However, given United's profile, not to mention its wealth - the club is ranked by Forbes as the second richest in the world - was the way Moyes was appointed the most risk-averse process?
United’s communication team failed to respond to CNN’s questions as to whether Moyes was the only manager considered for the job, whether there was ever a formal interview procedure, and if so who conducted it.
Reportedly Jose Mourinho, then Real Madrid coach, was considered, but the Portuguese was seen as likely not to offer United the type of long-term security Ferguson had given United since his appointment in 1986.
“There was unanimous agreement – David Moyes was the man," writes Ferguson in his autobiography of the conversation that he had with the club's owners - the Glazer family - as they discussed who should succeed him.
“David came over to the house to discuss his potential availability,” said Ferguson, before adding further on in his book: “The Glazers liked David. Right away they were impressed by him. The first point they will have noticed is that he a straight-talker.”
Ferguson also mentioned that he knew Moyes’ family: “They have a good family feel about them. I’m not saying that’s a reason to hire someone but you like to see good foundations in someone appointed to such high office.”
At the time of Moyes' appointment, Ferguson outlined why his compatriot got the job, despite not having won a trophy in more than a decade at Everton.
"David is a man of great integrity with a strong work ethic. I've admired his work for a long time and approached him as far back as 1998 to discuss the position of assistant manager here," Ferguson said.
"There is no question he has all the qualities we expect of a manager at this club.”
Don’t forget that when Ferguson was appointed United manager, he had guided Aberdeen to Scottish Premier League success as well as an impressive European Cup Winners’ Cup final win over Real Madrid.
Ed Woodward, who was promoted to the role of club chief executive at the end of last season, also said Moyes had “all the skills needed to build on United’s phenomenal legacy," but clearly the key to the 50-year-old's appointment was Ferguson.
"I am delighted that Sir Alex saw fit to recommend me for the job,” said Moyes when he has named as Ferguson’s replacement.
An incumbent playing such a big part in the appointment is unusual both in business and in football, but according to Tor-Kristian Karlsen - the former chief executive of French club Monaco - it was "natural it turned out that way" at United due to Ferguson's "standing and achievement."
Football is seemingly an industry that doesn’t obey any of the rules that might apply to other businesses. It’s often closed, distrustful of outsiders and even more distrustful of new ideas.
"By choosing Moyes - a manager rather than a head coach - Manchester United is trying to carry on with the management structure that proved successful for them for the past 25 years," added Karlsen.
"But one can argue that Sir Alex was an exception rather than the rule and I'm not convinced that it would be reasonable to think that any one manager could successfully walk right into his shoes.
"Which makes me think that David Moyes finds himself in a very demanding situation in trying to singlehandedly stay on top of a wide range of responsibilities that other title contenders across the Premier League and Europe divide between several roles and people.
"Given the level of pressure, the sky-high expectations and the relentless stress of being solely in charge of the footballing side of one of the biggest clubs in the world, it's no surprise that Moyes has had a difficult start to his United career."
I spoke to one recruitment consultant who said he was interested in helping clubs identify managers and players, but all too often he hit a brick wall of conservatism.
Karlsen, who is now working as a consultant in the football industry, including advising club owners and board on succession planning, argues that the tide is turning.
"There's a clear trend that the best-run clubs in European football are spending a lot more time and energy of understanding the international market for managers than what was previously the case," said Karlsen, speaking more generally about the process of appointing managers, rather than specifically about Moyes.
"In the long term I'm convinced that such a new approach will increase the longevity of the tenure of top-flight managers."
While no appointment can ever be future-proofed, Karlsen insists the risks can be minimized.
"The way I see it, it's the responsibility of the club's executive management to make sure that one is always prepared in the event that your manager leaves for another club - or indeed you feel a change is needed," he said.
"That's why one has to monitor potential managers, just the way one looks at players. Choosing the wrong man could result in dire consequences for the club.
"The skill is obviously to understand what type and profile of a manager/head coach is the right match to a given club, situation and squad, there are so many factors that play in. Especially considering that the movement of football coaches and managers is global."
Meanwhile, United fans will be asking themselves this question: “Is Moyes the best manager for the club for the next 20 years?”