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THE SHIRT ON THEIR BACKS: When the recruiters of MJ Recruiters, LLC aren’t sharing candidates and making placements in Top Echelon Network (with the MEGA Database and other tools), they’re mad geniuses of marketing. Above, Joanna Spaun models the latest in TE placement gear.

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Top Echelon’s MEGA Database tool for sharing candidates is much like membership in Top Echelon Network. It takes an investment of time and energy on the front end. However, once that investment is made, it takes a smaller amount of time each day to make the MEGA work for you.

And we have the perfect case study to illustrate this.

MJ Recruiters, LLC has made split placements just about every way possible in the Network. In fact, until recently, the only way the firm had not made a split was through the MEGA. Until recently, that is.

That’s because Joanna Spaun of MJ Recruiters made her first split placement with the MEGA!

Joanna and her business partner, Maria Hemminger, have known about the MEGA for quite some time. They hadn’t fully utilized the power of the searching and sourcing tool, though, until earlier this year.

Making the MEGA a priority

“The MEGA is a different animal,” said Joanna. “We were busy with our openings, so it was tough for us to devote time to it. But Drea [Codispoti] kept talking to us about using it, so we eventually decided that we would make it a priority.”

Rose Langhals of Bridgeway Professionals, Inc.

Rose Langhals

Drea conducted a Top Echelon Network Training Tuesday webinar session about the MEGA on January 19. Not only did Joanna attend that training to learn more about the MEGA, but she also sent a candidate through it to Rose Langhals of Bridgeway Professionals, Inc.

The first interesting part: she sent the candidate six minutes prior to the start of Drea’s training, at 12:54 p.m., Eastern Time.

The second interesting part: that candidate was eventually placed at Rose’s client.

Before that happened, Joanna attended the Training Tuesday webinar and picked up additional tips for using the MEGA. “The training was very good,” said Joanna. “It re-focused our efforts and helped me to figure out exactly what to do when sharing candidates with other recruiters.”

A crucial step in the process was the communication between Joanna and Rose at the outset of using the MEGA for the purpose of sharing candidates. This communication served to set the expectations, and that helped the two of them tremendously.

“Rose and I came to an understanding about how things would work,” said Joanna. “Both of us understood that when the other person sent a candidate through the MEGA, they weren’t going to pre-screen them. We both agreed to that, and we’ve been doing it ever since.”

Sharing candidates without pre-screening

Joanna recommends that recruiters send candidates without pre-screening them. She also recommends letting the other Network member know that the candidate has not been pre-screened.

“When we get a request from another recruiter, we don’t worry about pre-screening,” Joanna said. “We do offer that, but nobody has asked us to pre-screen yet. We tell them in the comments section that we haven’t talked with this particular candidate, even though we have worked with them. You still have to communicate.”

Joanna has now created a system for working in the MEGA that takes only about five or 10 minutes. (This is exclusive of the time spent on the searches themselves). In fact, she’s made it a point to check out the MEGA results daily over lunch.

“I see what the recruiter is looking for, I review the candidates, look at their work history, see where we got them,” she said. “No pre-screening, and away they go.”

According to Joanna, she does work both the candidate side and the job order side of the MEGA. However, most of her activity occurs on the candidate side, as she responds to other recruiters requests for help filling a particular position.

“We are $plitting in the MEGA Database”

And since MJ Recruiters never does anything halfway, Joanna and Maria printed special T-shirts to commemorate their first split placement in the MEGA Database. On the front of the shirt, it says, “We are $plitting in the MEGA Database . . .” On the back of the shirt, it says, “Why aren’t you?!” Both the Top Echelon and MJ Recruiters logos are also on the back.

“If we promote it, we believe that will help other recruiters use it,” said Joanna. “We were concerned that we didn’t have enough time to use it, but we are using it. It worked for us, and we believe it can work for other recruiters, too.”

The MEGA Database allows Top Echelon Network recruiters who use the Big Biller software to share information more quickly and easily. If you’re a Network recruiter and you don’t use Big Biller, you can still use the MEGA.  The only caveat is that while you can perform searches in the MEGA, your information will not be included in MEGA searches conducted by other Network recruiters.

By opting-in to the MEGA Database, you’ll have the opportunity to have every default resume in your Big Biller database searched by other Network recruiters in a blinded fashion. The recruiter conducting the keyword search will NOT be able to view your resumes. They will only be able to view your name and the number of your resumes that match their keyword search criteria.  Once that recruiter knows how many resumes you have that match their search criteria, they can request your help.

Click here for more information about how to opt-in to the MEGA Database and start sharing candidates with other recruiters in Top Echelon Network!

Perfect candidates are tough to find these days. Let’s face it: this is a candidate’s market. Not only that, but clients seem bound and determined to drag out the hiring process. In the meantime, even if you’re able to source great candidates, they disappear. Poof!

However, we have the perfect case study that illustrates the value that membership in Top Echelon Network provides. That’s because it involves:

  • Two long-time and successful recruiters
  • An “impossible search”
  • The sourcing of a “perfect candidate” for that “impossible search”
  • A placement process that took exactly three days

The perfect solution to your clients’ hiring needs

Will the candidates in Top Echelon Network always be that perfect? No, they won’t. Will the placement process always last just three days? No, of course not.

But if your clients want you to present more great candidates and you’re having trouble finding those great candidates,then the Top Echelon Recruiting Network is the answer. Your trading partners could have those candidates. Other recruiters in TE could have those candidates.

And yes, one of those candidates might be more than just great. They could be PERFECT.

If you’re looking for great candidates for your clients’ job orders, then I encourage you to contact Top Echelon Director of Network Operations Drea Codispoti, CPC/CERS at 330.455.1433, x156 or via email at

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Steve Kohn of Affinity Executive Search

Steve Kohn

Sean Napoles, CPC of Career Brokers, Inc.

Sean Napoles, CPC

“This was basically an impossible search, and by a miracle a perfect candidate who was local applied at Sean’s website. Three days from the first interview to the accepted offer!”

Submitted by Steve Kohn of Affinity Executive Search regarding her Network split placement with Sean Napoles, CPC of Career Brokers, Inc.


Fee Percentage—Flat fee recruiting percentage

(Editor’s note: This is the second Network split placement that Kohn and Napoles have made together in Top Echelon.)

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Jeffrey Gilbert of Kingfish Technology, LLC

Jeffrey Gilbert

Mike Ehlers of Ehlers Recruiting Partners

Mike Ehlers

“Jeff and I have had a bit of a dry spell after a good run a few years aback. We’ve always stayed in touch, and Jeff had found two candidates that went to the final round on this one. Another great sourcing effort!”

Submitted by Mike Ehlers of Ehlers Recruiting Partners regarding her Network split placement with Jeff Gilbert of Kingfish Technology, LLC


Fee Percentage—20%

(Editor’s note: This is the fifth Network split placement that Ehlers and Gilbert have made together in Top Echelon.)

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Bob Gabor of The Gabor Group

Bob Gabor

“Can’t seem to make an IT split with Sean, but this is our second HR placement. Keep ’em coming, Sean!”

Submitted by Robert Gabor of The Gabor Group regarding his Network split placement with Sean Napoles, CPC of Career Brokers, Inc.


Fee Percentage—25%

(Editor’s note: This is the second Network split placement that Gabor and Napoles have made together in Top Echelon.)

Last week in The Pinnacle Newsletter Blog, we published the results of a recent poll that we ran in the Members’ Area. Specifically, we asked Preferred Member recruiters what percentage of their firm’s candidates they shared with the rest of the Network.

The results of that poll were quite interesting, so . . . you guessed it—we ran another poll in the Members’ Area! Even if you didn’t participate in the poll, you’ve probably already guessed which question we asked.  That’s because once you ask about candidates, you have to ask about job orders, too. The two go together like pees in a pod, like peanut butter and chocolate, like Captain and Tennille. (Wait, what? They got divorced? Okay, scratch that last one.)

So, all pop culture references notwithstanding, what is the breakdown in terms of how many job orders TE members share with the rest of the Network?

To find out this information, we polled the Membership by posting the question below:

What percentage of your firm’s job orders are posted on Top Echelon Network?


The choice of answers that we provided is listed below, along with the percentage of recruiters who selected each one:

  • None of them — 8.0%
  • Between 1% and 25% — 35.0%
  • Between 26% and 50% — 11.0%
  • Between 51% and 75% — 7.0%
  • Between 76% and 99% — 21.0%
  • All of them — 18.0%


Right off the bat, you can see that Preferred Members share more of their firm’s job orders with the rest of the Network (by percentage) than they share candidates. In fact, nearly one-fifth of those participating in the poll (18%) share “all of them.”

In addition, another fifth of poll respondents (21%) indicated that they share “between 76% and 99%” of their firm’s job orders with the Network. Put those two percentages together, and already close to half of the recruiters who participated in our poll share at least 75% of their jobs. At the other end of the spectrum, 35% of poll participants indicated that they share “between 1% and 25%” of their job orders.

By contrast, only 8% of recruiters indicated that they don’t share any of their job orders. The rest of the results are pretty much spread evenly between the other choices that we offered.

Analysis and Conclusion:

It’s easier to share all of your job orders in Top Echelon Network than it is to share all of your candidates. That’s because recruiters have far more candidates than job orders. Not only that, but how many of those candidates have been screened, qualified, and updated?

In addition to THAT, there’s a certain amount of urgency tied to a job order, as opposed to a candidate. (No matter how good that candidate might be.) Recruiters want to fill their job orders now, now, NOW! When they’re having trouble filling a search, then they’re more likely to post that job on the Network and/or share the job with their trading partners.

And of course, as we’ve relayed on numerous occasions, the more job orders and candidates you share with the rest of the Network, the more success you can enjoy as a Network recruiter. The equation is a simple—and profitable—one.