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On Wednesday, April 15, we at Top Echelon conducted our first series of Virtual Business Development Discussions for Today’s Climate.

The objective of these meetings, which were based upon different niches, were to allow you to share what you are experiencing with your clients and candidates in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Each attendee briefly shared with the group the following:

  • What they’re hearing from clients and candidates
  • One thing they’ve been doing in their business during the past few weeks
  • One thing they’re doing to prepare for when their clients are ready to move

During this meeting, a number of Network members presented suggestions for what recruiters should be doing right now. I have since turned these suggestions into the following 15 directives:

  1. Spend time identifying top candidates now and connecting with them.
  2. Help clients and candidates alike both understand how to conduct a video interview, as well as how to operate one (Zoom, Google Meet, Skype).
  3. Stay in front of your clients. (Figuratively, of course.)
  4. Stay on the phone.
  5. Get training. (Like this training, for instance.)
  6. Find what information and help you can offer to your clients and candidates at no charge. Share your expertise and “pay it forward.”
  7. Build your network in Top Echelon and connect with more split recruiting partners.
  8. Be creative with how you can help your clients.
  9. Upgrade your agency’s website and your LinkedIn profile.
  10. Spend time posting relevant expertise on social media.
  11. Go back to contacts you have not spoken to in some time and re-connect.
  12. Do not “sell,” but just ask how people are doing and start a conversation. Do not call or market and use the COVID-19 subject as a reason for reaching out and connecting.
  13. Have “virtual coffee” with a client.
  14. Spend time sharpening your skills.
  15. Share all your jobs with Top Echelon Network. This will help you get talent in front of your clients, which is more important than ever right now.

Will we have more Virtual Business Development Discussions in the future? There’s a good chance we will, but you’ll need to read The Pinnacle Newsletter Blog for more information and updates.

In the meantime, keep “churning and burning” and make sure to leverage the resources of Top Echelon Network to help make more split placements.

If you have any questions about these Virtual Business Development Discussions, including ideas for future sessions, please contact me. You can do so by sending an email to

The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the employment marketplace has been a progression, much like the spread of the virus throughout the world population at large.

As such, it was only a matter of time before employers took steps to deal with the virus. This is especially the case in regards to face-to-face interviews. In order to shed some light on what employers have been doing, we posed a poll question to Top Echelon Network members.

That question was as follows:

How many of your clients have instituted a hiring freeze?

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

  • None of them — 9.4%
  • One or two — 24.5%
  • Three or four — 11.3%
  • More than four — 28.3%
  • All of them — 26.4%


As one might expect, answers were spread across the board. Unfortunately, “None of them” was the least popular answer, at least in terms of the number of votes, at 9.4%.

On the other hand, the most popular choice was “More than four” at 28.3%. Right behind that answer was “All of them,” checking in at 26.4%. “One or two” also garnered a fair share of recruiters’ attention, as nearly a quarter of them (24.5%) chose that as their answer.

While “Three or four” was next-to-last at 11.3%, it’s still not a good day as a recruiter if three or four of your clients have instituted a hiring freeze.

Analysis and Conclusion:

We have the answers to two questions here. First, are clients instituting hiring freezes? The answer that question is overwhelmingly in the affirmative. In fact, less than 10% of the Network members participating in our poll indicated that none of their clients are doing so.

The second question is how many clients are instituting hiring freezes? Once again, judging by the results of this poll, quite a few of them are doing so. At the very least, it would seem like the majority of them are opting to hit the “pause” button on their searches.

As this pandemic continues and the economy is adversely affected by it, more employers might decided to do the same. And of course, the trend is unlikely to reverse itself until the COVID-19 virus is under control and the economy—and society at large—more or less goes back to normal.

Whatever version of normal that might be.

If you have questions about your Top Echelon recruiting network membership, please contact Director of Network Operations Drea Codispoti, CPC/CERS.

You can do so by calling 330.455.1433, x156 or by sending an email to