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Agency being unprofessional or just me?

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by Cosmic_Rainbow, Sep 1, 2015.

  1. Cosmic_Rainbow

    Cosmic_Rainbow New commenter

    Hi I am completely new to supply so have no idea if this is normal but the agency i have joined seem very unprofessional and im thinking of looking else where and would like your opinions on this.

    Two weeks ago I posted my CV on a job website and this agency contacted me directly inviting me to an interview, i agreed to attend in a weeks time and sent an email as confirmation. I then received a phone call everyday that week leading to the interview, including one just an hour before the interview asking if i was still able to attend the interview. I also got a phone call asking for references and a copy of CV which i sent via email. It seemed a little odd to me that they rang to check i was still coming everyday.

    When i arrived at the agency there were a few other people waiting for interviews etc and it seemed a very busy office. i was called in to a meeting room and started the interview, the interviewer kept crossing things out on a form and told me a lot of my information was wrong on their form. When i looked at the form it had someone elses name on the top. I let them know and the interviewer left and then 2 different people came in to the room to interview me with the correct forms.

    Since the interview I have received calls from the agency everyday. I have been asked for my CV again, which by now they must have at least 3 copies of, I have been asked for my references again,which they now also have several copies of, i have been asked to complete forms which i filled in at interview. I was also quite unhappy that they had scanned a form i filled in at interview with my bank details on and sent it to me as an email attachment, didn't seem very secure to me.

    Anyone else has a similar experience?
  2. nearmiss

    nearmiss Lead commenter

    You've got it in one. They sound like a bunch of cowboys so don't have anything to do with them. Sadly, hundreds of chancers have jumped on the bandwagon now the Press has finally noticed that there is a crisis in school staffing. It's a chance to make a fast buck as far as the rogue agencies are concerned.

    If you are a member of a union, and I would recommend it heartily, notify them of this agency's name. All teaching unions offer a discount to supply or part time teachers. If the agency purports to be a member of the REC, report them to the REC too, not that they can do too much about it.

    Read some of the earlier posts about dodgy agencies and best practice.

    Don't let this put you off, there is work out there but some agencies, far from helping you into work are making it almost impossible to get it.

    The very worst case scenario is that some of these outfits are not agencies at all but a front for data theft. This is something that the REC are aware of but again, it is beyond their remit to do anything about it.

    Don't be too ready to disclose any details to anyone until they have shown you a written contract and have given you 24 hours cooling off time so you can read it at your leisure. Do a quick check on their LinkedIn account and other professional registrations.

    Probably their own people have been on the review websites posing as supply teachers with untraceable user names and reviewed the agency in glowing terms.

    If you have no choice but to sign up with agencies, please read the earlier newbie threads. It's a bit of a shark tank but forewarned is forearmed.

    Good luck.
  3. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Hi Cosmic

    You could post on here and ask other posters which agencies to use if you say where in the country you are at.

    Have you tried contacting schools directly? You have nothing to lose by trying to get work that way.
  4. neli

    neli Occasional commenter

    It sounds like the Agency I went to fist Cosmic. I was shocked at their unprofessionalism. Thankfully the next 3 were much better and more what I was expecting.

    As you mentioned, I was called and sent texts several times to remind me about the interview yet when I got there the man who I was led to believe was interviewing me wasn't even in that day!

    I was sat in the corner of a big busy room watching the 'madness' for about 15 minutes before someone had the time to fit me in. As I watched, they were shouting at one another, swearing at and blaming one another for mistakes, It was shocking and gave me a very poor first impression of Agencies and their running.

    The experience got worse and I left almost in tears thinking my life was over (don't want to go into too much detail about that sorry).

    I actually dismissed the idea of going back to Teaching at all after that experience.

    A few months later I accidently uploaded my CV to one of 'those' sites and was soon bombarded with calls from Agencies to go for interview and couldn't believe it when the same man rang from the same Agency again telling me how great I sounded and that I should go in for an interview. I let him ramble on with his speel before telling him that in fact he had rung before and then ranted (for a good 15 minutes) about exactly what I thought of his Agency and their unprofessional practice. That experience perked me right up and I accepted offers of interview with 3 other Agencies who were all lovely and seemed very professional, they all paid a lot better than the first one too. I've discovered since that the first one pay one of the lowest rates in the area although unfortunately they do get a lot of work.
  5. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Star commenter

    As 'nearmiss' said, many of the these so-called 'agencies' are anything but professional. Some of the them are just wide boys trying to make a fast buck, and the people working for them couldn't organise their p*ss into a bucket.
  6. WaylonWu

    WaylonWu Established commenter

    Although a bit more chaotic than usual, overall I'm not surprised at this experience. I've also been called by an agency inviting me in for interview even though I had already done so about 2 months earlier.

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