Is Search still worth it?

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Re: Is Search still worth it?

Post by nathan61 »

A few years ago I was just out of University and in the poorhouse and I didn't think twice about paying for Search. If it gives me even a small advantage, or even peace of mind, it be worth the money (coin).

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of multiple members of the ISR forum.

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Re: Is Search still worth it?

Post by falconeer »

Depends on what you need. Are you a relative newbie looking for a first or second contract? If yes, then they are probably worth it. Looking for China and the Middle East? These regions keep Search in business, and you'll be flooded in openings from these schools, so if this is a goal, they might be worth it. But if you are a seasoned international teacher, you should have a sense of what the landscape looks like, where the good schools are in each region, and you can apply to these schools directly as they post openings. At this point in your career, you will probably know people at a few of the schools you are interested in. So I'd say that if you are doing things properly, then you should need Search less and less as your career progresses.

Thames Pirate
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Re: Is Search still worth it?

Post by Thames Pirate »

I think it's worthwhile simply for the database. But that's me.

I can (and do) look directly at schools that interest me. I have applied directly to schools without ever looking at Search's database. However, I also use the database as a quick one-shot overview if there are schools that I like but may not have been at the top of my list. Sometimes jobs are on Search before they appear on the school's site, and other times it's the opposite.

I like the details at a glance on simple things like whether a school pays in local currency or not, benefits, makeup of school, and savings potential. I know these things are self-reported and skewed by things like dual passport students or admin inflation of savings, but they can often give a general idea. I also like that the interface is easy to use.

Since I have an existing profile that I have had for awhile, it's nice not to have to start from scratch--a few clicks to update and I'm off to the races. I do think this alone inspires loyalty, both from schools and candidates--and that means both sides have an interest in keeping the other around.

Depending on what I want in a school I would consider paying for other agencies, and certainly I check the free ones.

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Re: Is Search still worth it?

Post by tangchao »

IMO, Search is worth it as it is the only one that advises of the pay up front.

Gone are the days when you were encouraged to "just apply" for a job with no idea of the package, only to be insulted on the spot at the last minute. Now I can just screen out the ones that aren't paying enough without hurting any feelings.

That's the main, but not the only, reason I stay with Search.

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Re: Is Search still worth it?

Post by reisgio »

It's worth it the same way that wearing a condom is worth it: not ideal but protects all parties from even less ideal situations.

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Post by PsyGuy »

It depends on what your risk threshold is. The rule is the more broad your job search is the more benefit a premium agency can be to you, and SA has the largest database. If your only interested in a very narrow or small region or only a handful of elite tier ISs you can probably do the work yourself. If your throwing out a much larger net a premium agency like SA can be well worth the coin.
The other issue is fairs, if you want to go to SA fairs and no go rogue you need to register with SA.

Very few ITs got hired at GRC its an early recruiting fair. If you were an ISs super IT then you had a decent chance of appointment otherwise it wasnt much to talk about. SA is still very popular on the circuit. GRCs fairs arent putting SA fairs out of business.

You really dont have to register both ITs of a teaching couple just because some associate at SA says so. The value in SA is the database and one registration gets you the same database access as two. You just apply using the ISs email address for the vacancy rather than applying through the SA web portal. Even fairs have ways around avoiding two registrations.

Different associates are different but yes its entirely subjective about what references are shown to leadership/recruiters. Youre not the client, youre a commodity, the IT is no different than a cow at the county fair. SA doesnt work for you they work for the IS, they are the client.

Ive never had a strong positive opinion of UNI. I disagree somewhat with @Sid, its not the worst, there are some other (including SA) fairs that are/were worse. UNI works for a certain type of IT. UNI has the best success rate for the IT that wants to avoid the requisite consensus two years of DE experience and want to get right to IE and doent care much where. Its a much more familiar and low stress environment as its run like any Uni career fair. Its less a travel burden for US (and to some extent CAN) ITs.

SAs IS database is all self report and while you get some insight into package and anchor points for salary there are ITs who were exactly those anchor points who werent offered that salary. Further, SA has stated in the past that nothing on an ISs profile page is binding.

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Re: Is Search still worth it?

Post by vshrader »

Search used to be considered the elite site for job placement at the better schools. However, recently, I hear an increasing number of people say that their customer service has gotten really bad, and the value of getting on the site has plummeted. I have had a very bad experience this year. After spending untold hours filling out the lengthy forms, the assistant to Jessica Magagna kept sending me on wild goose chases for one more piece of information. Once she admitted to forgetting to send my application on. Eventually they just quit communicating entirely.

Meanwhile, I got an excellent job at a fair with ISS in Bangkok. Cutting-edge group associated with Riverside Schools in the US and with the United Nations schools.

I do not recommend SA. The site is not user-friendly and completing an app is tantamount to a dissertation. Then they do not follow-up or help you. And all for the highest prices in the industry.

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Re: Is Search still worth it?

Post by wander »

I think Search was worth it, but it really depends on what you are looking for in a job (as others have said). My representative was very responsive and the data base is the best. I also signed up for ISS but wasn't impressed. It seemed that many schools had partially filled information and the quality of the schools was not as strong as Search (just my opinion).

In the end, I ended up landing a dream job at a Search Fair and I'm sure that would not have happened if I had only applied directly through the school. It was the face to face introduction and interview at the fair that did it. Was it expensive? Yes, but more than worth it in the end.

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