With plenty of permanent vacancies being advertised by schools and local authorities, why would you want to involve an agency in your hunt for a permanent job? What are the benefits? Find out a few secrets of the profession here and get the inside scoop on maximising the impact of your job seeking efforts.
You might be surprised to hear that there are quite a few reasons for using an agency to find your next job – even if you’re only interested in permanent roles. At Axcis, many of our temporary workers are retained by their school on a permanent contract after they’ve done a term or two on supply – but many are offered straight-up permanent contracts too – especially for September or January. Here are 5 reasons you should consider using an agency to find your next permanent job:
1 – Avoid lengthy application packs
Hands up those who have filled in a school application pack before… most of you? Then you’ll know that they are lengthy, time-consuming and frustrating when you have to fill them out time after time before you get a single response from your many applications. Add to this the fact that most school employees are very busy people and you have a recipe for application deadlines passing before you get chance to finish those pesky forms. This is where an agency can really help you. All you have to do is register – usually on a website, and upload a CV. At Axcis, our online process is quick and easy – you could be on our system in as little as 5 minutes. After a quick chat with your consultant to go through what you’re looking for, you can get back to your sunbathing safe in the knowledge that someone else is buzzing away in the background, busy as a bee, trying to find you your next post. Not only that, but once they find you jobs you’d like to be considered for, they will usually do the application part for you! How lovely is that? No more school application packs! (Or a lot less anyway – I am sure you’ll still be doing a bit of your own job hunting!)
2 – Be considered for jobs you don’t know exist
Here is an inside tip – schools DO contact agencies about vacancies they SUSPECT are coming up – especially if they are shortage or SEND teaching positions, since these are often hard to recruit for and getting ahead of the game can make a huge difference. Schools won’t admit to this, and I certainly won’t name names… but we often get calls at this time of year which go something like; “This isn’t official yet, so don’t disclose the name of the school, but we are pretty sure x or y are going to leave and we are going to need to recruit, so can you start to look for someone now?” As schools can’t officially advertise these positions until they fulfil the HR criteria, your agency can be a great source of “top secret” vacancies which you won’t see (or be told about) anywhere else.
3 – Try before you commit
Let’s have another round of hands-up… hands up those of you who have accepted a job in a
school in the past, only for it to turn out to be nothing like you expected? A few less than last time… but still quite a few of you! There is a reason that this happens – many head teachers have a tendency to over-sell their role/department or school. They may not even realise that they’re doing it as school pride can easily get in the way of an honest, warts-and-all description of your new post. One of the benefits of working with an agency is that many clients forego the standard interview process and invite staff to work for a day or two in order to try out the class before deciding whether to offer the job. This is a fantastic way for the school to quickly see if you will fit in with the ethos of the school as well as being able to build a rapport with your class – so it benefits them. However, it is also a great opportunity for you. For one thing, you will most likely be paid for the days you work – that can’t be bad, can it? Getting paid to go for an interview? On top of that, you will get the same benefit as the school – the opportunity to experience EXACTLY what you’re getting into before you sign a contract. Anyone who has ever been mis-sold a job before (or simply misunderstood it) will agree that this is a huge benefit!
4 – Let someone else do the awkward negotiations for you
At Axcis, negotiations form part of our everyday life – we are constantly negotiating rates with schools and candidates alike, so when you
find that perfect job and want to ask for more money but are worried about losing the opportunity, Axcis can help! We are more than happy to speak to the school on your behalf and help to negotiate for you. It could be your basic salary, getting you a TLR point, negotiating benefits such as support with child care or relocation or simply testing the water to check you are already getting the best offer available to you. Our consultants are not in the least bit phased by discussions like this, so let us take away the stress and be your own personal negotiator!
5 – Use your consultants reputation to your advantage
Experienced recruitment consultants will have spent years building relationships with their clients. This is a consideration which should not be under-valued. In the sales industry, there is a mantra; “people buy from people” – personal relationships really do count. So when your CV doesn’t tick all the boxes on the job description, your agent can use their word in support of your application to get you an interview. Of course, this only works if your consultant has a good track record with the school in question, but trust me – if they didn’t, they wouldn’t still be working together! Schools have a choice of literally hundreds of agencies so why would they work with one if they didn’t get good staff from them?
So, if you are looking for your next permanent (or temporary) job in special educational needs, and you are not currently registered with Axcis, why not do so now? One thing is for sure – it will take a lot less time than that school application pack which has sat on your kitchen counter for the last two weeks waiting to be filled in!