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Why are ED recruitment agencies such a shower?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by cillia, Jul 20, 2018.

  1. cillia

    cillia New commenter

    I have been to so many interviews where early on in the process they mention a deal breaking feature. A week ago I travelled 70 mile round trip only to be told the position is 'Point 6' of a job. Another i went to recently clearly was an IT Post rather than my discipline and yet I asked the agency all the relevant questions and ask them to ask the School/ College / Academy the questions i.e. what the curriculum is? What the Pay is? Who is the awarding body? what the projected Timetable is? and even can I have a telephone pre-interview chat with the HOD beforehand. Only once have I managed to get a Tel pre-interview and highlighted in the first minute that the school/ academy site was not the one where the interview was taking place and consequently the travel was unfeasible. The HR departments often know next to nothing and Chinese whispers coming from Department to HR to Agency to me invariably have mistakes either in pay, hours, and other stuff of the above. So frustrating.
  2. ElizaMorrell

    ElizaMorrell Occasional commenter

    I signed up with an agency and expressed an interest in working in a school in a deprived area, with high levels of pp, sen, eal. This is my background and where I most wanted to work.

    They set me up with a private boarding school.

    Basically, they have targets and get commission, so they'll throw you at any open position.
  3. frankxwilliams

    frankxwilliams New commenter

    I've been told many unexpected changes at interview. These are 3 I can remember off the top of my head.
    1. Full time becomes 0.6-0.8 at interview.
    2. Full time job teaching specialism becomes full time job with 0.4 specialism and 0.6 humanities.
    3. Advertised permanent post becomes temp at interview but permanent once sick staff member leaves. Take up post anyway. Member leaves and told there will be staffing restructure so still temporary.

    None of these were recruitment agencies but just goes to show the same issues plague recruitment by schools themselves.
  4. Jolly_Roger15

    Jolly_Roger15 Star commenter

    Many agencies think of matching staff to jobs in the same way as barkers outside seedy night clubs. Someone tempted in by the promise of a 'continuous strip show' might find themselves watching a demonstration of wallpaper removal. The barker has got the punter through the door, and parted him from his cash; job done.

    I know how you feel, @cilia. How many times I have I been sent to a school by placement agencies, which have 'guaranteed' that the position is a paid one, only to find that it is not, or has a long 'lead in' period of unpaid work before the paid work begins.
    susanrk and agathamorse like this.
  5. cillia

    cillia New commenter

    I don't understand why, as teachers seem to be so regulated, that there isn't a .gov area where all ones qualifications DBS status, registered CPD, work history, current work status etc etc is listed and then HR's could search specialisms and they would have all the details they require you to painstakingly fill in, in their application forms. There Agencies are only filling in where school and college HR's can't or won't do the legwork.
    BetterNow and agathamorse like this.
  6. Flanks

    Flanks Senior commenter

    Such centralised data bases have always been opposed by privacy groups.
    agathamorse likes this.
  7. cillia

    cillia New commenter

    Can you speculate the reasons why?
  8. Flanks

    Flanks Senior commenter

    No speculation required. It is the concern that such databases are abused by central authorities which can wreck careers, lives, etc.

    You may recall the recent 'black list' which was uncovered in the construction industry. Dozens of people who lost all ability to work in their profession because of a central list used by recruiters and companies, even union membership discounted people from employment.

    If your cpd isn't updated and you discover this because of a job application, I bet you would love going to HR the next day to explain to people that you want to leave before you actually have a job to go to. Floods of posts on this forum would appear about how the data is wrong, being mismanaged, misuses, being kept away from positive things and opportunities which would look good on it, etc etc.

    Be glad you get to complete the form each time in my opinion, I much prefer having the stronger say in my application, and I say that as someone who starts a new post in September having recently filled out several forms, with same information, several times, for each job! The ability to sell myself was mine, and not dependent on some database somewhere else which may/may not be correct, up to date, carry tags which mark me out in ways I don't know about, etc.
  9. Jolly_Roger15

    Jolly_Roger15 Star commenter

    From an agency's point of view, the teacher is just the equivalent of the vacuum cleaner salesman's 'foot in the door'. The hope is that once in the school, you might take the job, even though is not what you originally wanted, and the school might offer you the job, even though you are not what the school originally wanted.
  10. FollyFairy

    FollyFairy Occasional commenter

    On the other hand, my Ed agency could not have looked after me better when I was looking for a job last year. Offered me interview at job they thought I would like and they were right! Once term started, they appeared at my new school with flowers and bottle of fizz for me too!
  11. thekillers1

    thekillers1 Lead commenter

  12. oldsomeman

    oldsomeman Star commenter

    On supply I used to be sent to new schools with the instruction to try hard to please( I did anyway). Once there you work to build up the agency by doing your best,get compliments and start getting asked back.Within a week you were 'removed'.,not because of wrong ,but because some poxy young teacher needed to gain experience so that teacher was sent in.....then i ended up with no work as I was probabaly too expensive as an experienced supply teacher. In the end I just refused to do that.Schools still called me back till the agency cottoned on and then found some person who needed the work or was cheper.Shooting yourself in the foot is what I called it!
    agathamorse likes this.
  13. Jolly_Roger15

    Jolly_Roger15 Star commenter

    @oldsomeman: In effect, the agency uses you as a 'loss leader', except yours is the loss!
    agathamorse likes this.
  14. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    This would not be a problem if the person concerned has control over what is on the database, and can easily access their own data. I would hate the idea of a database updated by schools.
  15. cillia

    cillia New commenter

    very rare occurrance - what were they Psychic?
  16. itgeek

    itgeek New commenter

  17. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

  18. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    No idea about the link, but the statement is true. I have dealt with agencies both as an employer and a job seeker outside education, and it was often not good. I remember interviewing somebody as a secretary/administrator where we had told the agency that administration was an important half of the job. When we mentioned this, the candidate said 'but I hate administration".
    agathamorse likes this.
  19. itgeek

    itgeek New commenter

    The link should be the original google search term, there are multiple sites on the topic worth reading if you


    recruitment agencies tricks

    the posted link however sems to have got corrupted.

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