How to make the most of your time with a supply teaching agency
Supply teaching is a great choice for those looking to make a start in the educational industry as an NQT or those wanting to get more flexibility in their work-life balance. In November 2017, regular supply teachers took up a quarter of the teaching roles, which shows that their skills are in high demand.
Many of these have been placed in a school through recruitment agencies. That’s why this month we wanted to explore some of the ways that you can make the most of your time with an education recruitment agency.
Build a relationship
When it comes to continued supply teaching work, it’s always worth building a strong relationship with your agency. Throughout your time with them, you’ll get to know the way they work, any procedures they need to go through and to an extent, members of their team.
For example, here at Simply Supply, each of our candidates has a dedicated consultant that works with them throughout the duration of their time with the agency. These strong working relationships help the consultant select placements that suit each individual candidate’s strengths, whilst also being mindful of individual candidate preferences, making their time at the school or nursery even more enjoyable.
Be open-minded about your work
One of the most exciting aspects of supply teaching is that the roles are varied, as are the schools that you work in. Their staff, their pupils and their environment all bring their own unique experiences, so it’s important to be open-minded about where you’ll work and the responsibilities you’ll be given.
If you’re able to keep an open mind about the type of supply teaching that is available, you’ll most likely get a lot more offers from the supply teaching agency.
Make sure to update your availability
As with all temporary supply work, it’s important to keep your availability up to date. In the world of education, there’s no telling how soon you might be called on to fill a position in a local school or nursery. Making sure your availability is kept up to date means that you’re able to show your flexibility, and there’s less chance of your supply job clashing with other commitments.
Regardless of where you are in your supply teacher journey, it’s important to stay focused on your time with the supply teaching agency. You may think that signing up with more than one agency will result in more work, but the exact opposite can happen.
Signing up with one agency means that you are able to give your career as much focus as possible, you will build a close and trusted working relationship with your Consultant and once again, there’s less risk of your supply teaching jobs clashing with other working commitments.
The more you let your supply teaching agency down, or can’t work on days when you initially stated that you could, the less chance you have of your agency contacting you first about all booking opportunities.
If you have built up a trusted relationship and always communicate openly and honestly with your agency, you will receive more work opportunities. Working with multiple agencies can make this relationship complicated, confusing or just frustrating for both parties.
Showcase your unique expertise
When you’re speaking to a supply teaching agency, it’s crucial that you highlight your unique skills, experience and expertise. Not only does this help you stand out from other candidates, but it also helps your advisor place you in roles that are the perfect match. At Simply Supply we meet all our candidates for a registration interview and part of this process is to uncover all of your unique selling points.
This also helps with your reputation in the school or nursery. Often they will show a preference for certain candidates and will request them for future positions. If you can show them how skilled you are in a specific field, they will be more likely to ask for you back if they have any roles that need filling.
If you need more information or advice on how to progress your supply-teaching career, then take a look at the articles listed below:
- Prepare ahead of time: activities to fill free time during lessons
- Advice for first time teaching assistants
- What you need to prepare for your first nursery placement
In summary, if you are prepared to be flexible, showcase your skills and work with, rather than for, an education recruitment agency, then your time together is going to be successful, fulfilling and rewarding. Remember, don’t be afraid to ask for help and if you do need any further information, then we’re here to talk.
We also have lots of positions available on our job board. These are regularly updated, so if you see one you think you’ll be suitable for, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.