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Reducing supply costs

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by Bluelamb, Oct 5, 2019.

  1. Bluelamb

    Bluelamb New commenter

    In my current school (special needs) we use supply agencies when we have no other choice.
    It has become apparent that we actually ask the agencies for specific people because;
    - we know them from past experience
    - we trust them
    - we know they will do a good job.
    I just wanted to ask if anyone has used or heard of an alternative way of employing such people rather than using a supply agency? It just seems so easy for the agency to simply call up a specific person and then send them to us and take their large fee each day.
    For example, an easy way to put them on your books so they have the same conditions as a supply agency.
  2. The-Gaffer

    The-Gaffer Occasional commenter

    Ask them if they would be interested working direct with you? If they say no you’ve lost nothing if they say yes start the conversation & decide what you both mean by being employed direct.

    Draw up a local service agreement that you are both happy with & you are all set.
    Stiltskin, abwdSTEM and JohnJCazorla like this.
  3. Bluelamb

    Bluelamb New commenter

    Thanks for the reply.
    Seems quite a long approach, aren’t there any companies who offer this?
  4. Sundaytrekker

    Sundaytrekker Star commenter

    You can create your own zero hours contract and agreed rates of pay. Don’t forget oncosts for NI and pensions also safer recruitment checks. On the other hand, that’s why agencies are doing well. Does your LA still operate payroll
    JohnJCazorla likes this.
  5. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    You may have to pay the agencies a "finders fee" as you first encountered the teacher through them.
    DexterDexter likes this.
  6. install

    install Star commenter

    In house permanent Cover person employed by the school. .And when they are not being used for Cover they support .
    Stiltskin likes this.
  7. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    This can get really expensive... I wonder if there are a few local schools that could club together/use as a trust and get the SBM to make the equivalent of your own agency. I really wonder how/why we allow agencies to take such a large slice of profit.
  8. abwdSTEM

    abwdSTEM Occasional commenter

    There is an answer to this.

    You recruit your own supply teachers. Advertise for them via your website , interview them and take up references as you would any other post. You then contact them as and when you need them. Give them regular work rather then an agency and they will will become just like a regular member of your staff known to both students and staff and will be familiar with all your school policies.

    It will cost you less and pay the supply teacher more so both parties will win. Yes it will mean some more work for your admin staff but you cannot have everything.

    I worked on supply for almost 20 years and had this arrangement with several schools as well as doing agency work. Incidentally use supply teachers or lose them. Fewer and fewer schools did their own work and relied on agencies, agency wages did not rise over time (and even went down) so I left supply teaching for another non-teaching job along with many of my supply colleagues.
  9. Deirds

    Deirds Senior commenter

    Rather quiet now Supply Teachers have given their suggestions...given we’re the target employees..

    SUPER.SUPPLY Occasional commenter

    Hello all, allow me to join in. I have saved schools a mint over the years by advising them to directly approach the supply teachers concerned. Many are supply through choice. I used to be supply through choice and negotiated zero hours contracts with the school and be in their books that way. I paid in contributions to pension, got paid my rate and had no ties to one particular school. Here is a way of doing it. Just approach those concerned when they are next there. Ask the supply if they are able to be on your books on certain days or for a certain amount of time. All they need to do is tell the agency that they are not available. I did it so anyone can. You may think this is a lot of time consumed but it actually saves you money in the end.
    Well it did 4 years ago.

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