Top Echelon Contracting, the Recruiter’s Back-Office Solution, Celebrates 20 Years in Business

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President Debbie Fledderjohann discusses how the contract staffing industry has changed since the company was founded in 1992.

Top Echelon Contracting President Debbie Fledderjohann

Top Echelon Contracting President Debbie Fledderjohann

Contract staffing has surged in the wake of the recession as flexibility and cost-containment have become critical issues in today’s business environment.

Top Echelon® Contracting (TEC) is celebrating 20 years of helping direct hire recruiters add contract staffing to their business models.

The company, based in Canton, OH, was established in 1992 and services the recruiting industry. As professional and technical contract staffing job openings continued to grow, it became obvious that many recruiters were turning down opportunities to take contracting job orders because they didn’t have the resources or ability to handle all the tasks associated with employing contractors.

As a result, Top Echelon Contracting was formed with the mindset of being the “back-office” for recruiters. Essentially, TEC became the legal W-2 employer of record for the contractors that recruiters were matching up to contract job orders. That is still TEC’s business model today. TEC handles all of the financial, administrative, and legal tasks, including employee paperwork, background checks, legal contracts, timesheet collection, payroll processing and funding, tax withholding, benefits, Workers’ Compensation, invoicing, collection of accounts receivables, and everything else that falls to the responsibility of having employees on payroll.

Over the years, TEC has noticed continued growth in the area of contract staffing, said President Debbie Fledderjohann.

“Initially we were placing a lot of Information Technology “job-shoppers”, along with a few technical and professional contractors,” Fledderjohann said. “The practice of utilizing contractors steadily expanded into an extremely wide range of engineering fields and is now a business strategy utilized by nearly every industry and for positions leading all the way to the C-Suite. Contract staffing has surged in the wake of the recession as flexibility and cost-containment have become critical issues in today’s business environment. In fact, TEC experienced a 22% increase in its commercial placements in 2011.”

About seven years ago, Top Echelon Contracting added healthcare contracting to their scope of business. This was an excellent move due to the aging population, along with state and federal mandates associated with medical services for children. The surge of contract opportunities for therapy, nursing, and pharmacy careers is growing each year.

Fledderjohann also noted a change in workers’ attitudes toward contracting.

“Contract assignments were once considered a last resort when a direct position was not available,” she said. “Now workers are seeking contract positions because they like the flexibility it offers them from a work/life balance perspective, plus they are paid for every hour they work, as opposed to a traditional salary payment plan for professionals. One fact that TEC is proud of is the fact that we also offer our contractors medical benefits through Blue Cross and Blue Shield. This benefit is extremely important to almost all the candidates.”

TEC, which is known industry-wide as “The Recruiter’s Back-Office Solution,” does business in 49 states and specializes in technical, professional, and healthcare contract placements. The company has experienced growth in 18 of its 20 years and has paid recruiters more than $50 million in profits.

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Julie Graff
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