There are many recruiters in Top Echelon who are enjoying success using the Network’s tools and services. In this feature, we highlight those recruiters, their accomplishments, and their outlook. If you’d like to nominate somebody who’s experienced Network success for this feature (including yourself), send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Top Echelon Network Recruiter:
Nancy Phillips of Phillips Staffing Solutions, LLC
Nancy joined Top Echelon Network in May of 2014. Since that time, she’s made six split placements in the Network: one in 2014, four in 2015, and one already in 2016. Nancy has “hit the ground running” as a Network recruiter, and we wanted to ask her a few questions about the success that she’s enjoyed so far.
What do you believe have been the keys to your success in Top Echelon Network?
“For me, it’s a number of things. One of the most important was attending the National Convention in Atlanta, where I got to meet the staff of Top Echelon and other members. It allowed me to see firsthand that not only the staff cheers on individual success, but also each member of Top Echelon. It’s a very supportive environment. Picking up the phone to introduce myself and having conversations with the other recruiters in the Network, as well as attending the group discussions each month to stay on top of changing job orders, has also helped.”
What value do you believe the Network provides for your firm?
“Let me count the ways . . . training by top experts in our field, access to the MEGA search for candidates, recruiters who are happy to find candidates for my jobs, visibility of my job orders on other members’ websites, the ability to accept job orders that once I would have turned down, and jobs from other recruiters for myself and my staff to help fill are just a few of the value-added services of being a Top Echelon Network member.”
Who are the trading partners with whom you’ve been working?
“Pam Copeland, Trey Cameron, Sean Napoles, Lois Rupkey, Kristy Staggs, Frank Laux, Jim Strickland, Ross Causley, Holly Webber, Terry Rhodes, Jackie Johnson, Denise Montrose, Steve Moore, Tom Bower, Ken Nunley, and Mark Petras. I’m sure I must be forgetting someone . . . not all of these have been realized as placements, but it’s only a matter of time.”
Why do the relationships you have with your trading partners work so well?
“Mutual respect and good communication.”
What advice would you give to a new Top Echelon Network recruiter just starting out?
“Jump in with both feet! You will feel overwhelmed at first, but everything will fall into place. Start by introducing yourself and attending conferences and monthly calls. Everyone really has your best interests at heart. When you’re successful, so is everyone else.”
What are your goals for future production in the Network?
“Finding my way into the top 10.”
How would you describe the activity level in your niche?
“My strong suit is Logistics, Supply Chain, and Procurement. When I first joined [the Network], it seemed like there were not many in my niche. What I found out was that as long as I’m posting all of my jobs, recruiters will see them and it could bring up a candidate that they would not normally have placed or thought about. Now we have several recruiters who attend the monthly [Virtual Core Group] call, and that to me is exciting!”
What’s the biggest obstacle on your desk right now, either with candidates or with clients?
“The age-old response of client feedback in a timely manner and candidate honesty. Most of my clients are fairly decent with feedback and know what I expect, but there are always the few who drag their feet and it becomes embarrassing as a recruiter that you aren’t able to provide this for your candidates. Then there is always the ‘No, I never applied there’ from a candidate who may have applied with your client multiple times. Luckily, my clients understand this happens.”
What’s one new recruiting strategy or technique that you’ve implemented in the past year that you wouldn’t mind sharing with other recruiters?
“I started keeping track of numbers. I used to do this when I was with FPC years ago, but had gotten out of the habit when the office closed and I went out on my own. I had a recruiting coach for the first two months in 2015, and I learned the value of numbers. I’m now focusing on how many first-time interviews I have each week instead of making placements. It’s amazing how that one focus change has made me more productive.”
What are your thoughts on the recruiting industry overall and where it might be headed in the next 12 to 18 months?
“Good question, and nobody has that crystal ball. When I first started recruiting, the Internet was just being introduced. The changes in the last 15 years alone have been tremendous, as we all know. What I’ve heard is that the aging workforce will make a demand on our industry to provide top talent, so that’s good news. I’ve also heard that the aging workforce does not necessarily want to retire (or can’t fully retire), so contract staffing will have a large uptick, giving the choice of committing to a job for a period of time and reassessing the situation at the end of a contract.
“HR and internal recruiters seem to be much bolder in reaching out directly to candidates on behalf of their employer, but they cannot devote their day to cold calling, still making us the solution. I clearly expect my desk to be very busy over the next year or more. For me, it’s still the only job where I can have the flexibility with my time and still make a good living, so I’m here until there is no longer a need for what we provide.”