Ulster CEO Shane Logan admits the departure of director of rugby David Humphreys was a shock, but the province wouldn't stop him.
Humphreys announced on Saturday that he would be leaving Ulster after decades of service as a player and coach, heading to the Aviva Premiership to take over at Gloucester.
The former Ireland fly-half will replace the sacked boss Nigel Davies at Kingsholm and work with an impressive squad including last week's signing James Hook, with Logan highlighting his success with Ulster when it came to recruitment.
While admitting to being 'taken aback' by the news from Humphreys on Saturday, Logan added that Ulster would never stand in the way of his ambitions.
"His recruitment and retention of players at Ulster was second to none in Europe," Logan told the Irish Examiner.
"He's always been very successful and has great morals and humility. I think his skill set fitted perfectly well with the people we've got at the club.
"I don't think we tried to do anything [to stop him].
"I think David has been consistent over the years that he wants his career to advance.
"We've had a joint career plan. Part of that has been to advance excellent levels of success and a really good legacy here.
"We wouldn't stand in David's way."
Ulster must now begin the process of finding a successor for Humphreys ahead of next season.