How to recruit teachers.
We all know that finding the right calibre of teachers for your pre-school business is one of the key challenges you may find in developing your business. Here we look at some of the things to bear in mind before developing your recruitment strategy, and some of the tips our Pingu’s English franchise partners have shared with us of things that have worked for them.
- Check national guidelines
Pre-schools may be bound by the guidelines and requirements of the Ministry of Education in their respective countries, and this is increasingly true in English Language Training centers. So first and foremost you need to be sure you understand any employment regulations you face when importing native English speakers for your pre-school business.
- Consider the timing of any recruitment campaign
Put yourself in the mindset of the teacher. Many pre-school teachers work on fixed-term contracts of between nine months and two years. Some obtain permanent employment, but others will work for several employers on a succession of limited contracts.
- Plan your recruitment process
Be clear internally what the process will involve before advertising, and timescales.
Will it be one interview or two? Will it involve a written test? Will there be an opportunity for a center visit or to view a class? When will you check references and teacher certificates?
All will be important and help manage expectations of the interviewee, and make sure your recruitment campaign is as effective as possible.
- Prepare a contract in advance of starting your recruitment campaign
Pre-school teachers will expect and should receive an employment teacher contract that gives full details of all the above. Teachers will check contracts closely for details of holiday and sickness pay and any evening, weekend and holiday work that may be required so make sure this is included.
- Make your recruitment offer clear and transparent
Competition for good quality pre-school teachers can be fierce – so any recruitment offer and advertisement needs to be open and specific. An experienced pre-school teacher will be looking for top-line details in their teacher’s contract including:
- Length of Contract – 6 months, one year etc
- Housing support – If this is being provided as part of the package, is it fully or partly subsidised, fully furnished, single occupancy or shared apartments (with air conditioner / washing machine / telephone / printer / WIFI etc)?
- Pre-school teacher salary and any flight allowances
- Paid orientation/training in-country prior to contract
- Health insurance
- Extent of working period i.e. 32.5 contact hours per five-day working week
- Other support offered (visas, training opportunities etc.)
- Design compelling recruitment adverts to target the best candidates
Your Franchisee Operations Manual should offer guidance on the content and design of any advert when you join us as a Master Franchisee. The Marketing team will also provide artwork for your adverts, and provide advice on making the campaign work hard for you.
- Be creative with your advertising and monitor your response
Some Pingu’s English franchise partners have had success with a Facebook campaign and promotion on their website. Others use CELTA centers from the UK or reputable recruitment agencies to source native English speakers. Agencies will charge a fee but can be cost-effective in the long run. For instance, school owners might want to use an agency if they don’t have time to interview numerous applicants for a single pre-school position. Using an agency can allow owners to focus on running their pre-school. They might also find a lower teacher turnover rate with those employed via agencies. Good agencies work hard to keep teachers happy. Key is to check any company’s you’re planning to work with online and try and get personal recommendations before signing up with them.
Teacher recruitment fairs are also popular in many markets, and a quick search online will let you know where and when they are taking place.
Do remember to share with other Pingu’s English partners what has worked and what hasn’t.
- Keep an eye on teacher recruitment websites
There are hundreds of websites offering pre-school teacher vacancies.
A last bit of advice, when looking for new staff for your pre-school, remember that if an applicant can build rapport and communicate well, they can very likely be trained. On the whole, it is worth considering the mantra, ‘Recruit Attitude, Train Skills’. Look for any transferrable skills that involve working with and communicating to people – especially in the equivalent market you teach to.
If you are specifically looking for applicants to have qualifications though, drill into the details of the provider and the applicants learning and ask for teacher certificates or other evidence if appropriate, to make sure you get the right person for the job.