Monday, November 29, 2010

What do I need to know to work as a Teacher in London or the UK?

Heading to the UK to work as a secondary teacher, primary teacher or early childhood teacher is a common career path move particularly among teachers from Australia, New Zealand and Canada. But what does it involve and what do you need to get started? Here are a few frequently asked questions to get you started.

Where in the UK can I teach and where will I find most teaching work?
There is a demand for good teachers across the whole of England including rural towns and big cities. The greatest demand for teachers is in London with such a large cluster of schools in a relatively small geographical area.

Can I choose to only teach in good schools or independent schools?
Yes, you can set your teaching expectations when looking for work and all good recruitment consultants will listen carefully to your wishes and only advise you of suitable jobs. Obviously the higher the expectations you have the fewer teaching opportunities there will be that meet your wishes. It is often a good option to try different schools in supply teaching roles so that you can take some time to decide those schools you like and want to teach in long-term.

Can I get a teaching job before I leave home?
Yes, it is common for teachers to have a confirmed teaching role in the UK before departing. It is more common for secondary school teachers than primary school teachers. However, you will most often be required to have your own work visa before a school will consider offering you a job.

When does the school year begin and what are the school term dates?
The school year begins in September each year and ends in July the following year. There are three school terms. The autumn term runs from Sep to Dec, the spring term runs from Jan to early April and summer term runs from Easter to July. Mid term holidays are one week, end of term holidays are two weeks and the summer holidays are six weeks.

What is the average class size?
Class sizes are normally around thirty students. You may find that classes of less able students are smaller.

What are the pay rates for UK teachers?
Teachers in supply teaching contracts are paid per day and rates generally range from £120 to £150 per day. The salaries for permanent teachers are guided by the pay scales set by the Department for Education. Salaries generally range from £20,000 - £40,000 with Principals and Head teachers possibly earning up to £100,000. For more information see pay rates

When do I need to have my police check completed before teaching in the UK?
For the protection of children, all teachers must have a police check from their home country issued within three months of departure for the UK. You must also have a CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) check completed in the UK.

What is supply teaching?
Supply teaching is the terminology used in the UK for temp or relief teaching. Day-to-day supply refers to jobs which are filled one day at a time. Short-term or long-term supply teaching can refer to teaching placements as short as two weeks to as long as a few terms.

I have heard the term “Key Stages”, what is this?
The British school curriculum is divided into key stages that represent the age or level of students in their educational development. Key stage 0 is nursery or early childhood ages 3-5 yrs. Key stage 1 is primary school ages 5-7 yrs. Key stage 2 is primary school ages 7-11 yrs. Key stage 3 is secondary school ages 11-14 yrs. Key stage 4 is secondary school ages 14-16 yrs. Key stage 5 is secondary school ages 14-16 yrs. GCSE exams are completed at the end of key stage 4. A-levels are completed at the end of key stage 5.

Why use a teaching agency?
Teaching agencies save a teacher a lot of leg work and have well developed relationships with many schools therefore they often know about a large volume of job vacancies before anyone else. Teaching agencies can answer all your job, school and curriculum questions and give you a lot of guidance on how best to prepare for interviews and the new job. You can go to schools directly if you are happy to do the leg work and are confident that you can sell your skills better than anyone else. It is best to phone the school and speak to someone rather than sending an unsolicited email with a CV attached. Be aware that once you have contacted a school directly that often means that (due to recruitment exclusion clauses) an agency cannot go back to that school on your behalf if you fail to adequately impress the principal with your skills.

How does using a UK teaching agency work?
Generally you begin by providing your CV. Then a consultant will work with you to improve your CV if needed and collect additional documentation such as police checks and reference checks. Once your experience has been vetted and all security matters cleared, they will either match you with suitable job vacancies or talk directly to schools and ask if they need someone with your skills. You may be asked to interview over the telephone, video conference or make an interview date upon your arrival.
If you request day-to-day supply teaching you will be phoned early each morning and given details of a job which you can accept or decline. Most teachers develop a close relationship with two or three consultants who have a good understanding of their needs so that they only offer work that meets your needs such as location, pay and standard of school.

I don’t have a visa, can a UK school get a work permit for me?
It is possible but becoming less common for UK schools to sponsor teachers. It is more likely in the case of teachers on the UK shortage occupation list. The list is regularly updated but usually includes math’s teachers, all science teachers and special needs teachers. It will be very difficult for teachers that are not on the shortage list to gain sponsorship therefore you should look into other UK visa options

Can I teach in the UK if I haven’t completed my teacher registration?
Yes, you can teach in the UK if you have completed your degree but not your teacher registration. The UK recognises teachers’ qualifications from several countries including Australia, New Zealand, Canada and South Africa. It advisable to complete your QTS requirements while teaching in the UK.

What is QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) and do I need it?
QTS is the accreditation that enables teachers to teach in state-maintained and special schools in England and Wales. Teachers from outside the EU must complete QTS within four years of your first day of teaching otherwise you will never be able to teach in UK state or special schools again. The four years is inclusive of anytime you spend travelling or living in another country. Basically if you ever want to return to the UK and teach you need to complete QTS.

Are special needs students taught in mainstream schools?
Special needs students are often taught within mainstream schools. The learning difficulties of these students can be emotional, behavioral, physical or through learning difficulties such as dyslexia. These students are monitored and their progress evaluated by an Individual Education Plan under the supervision of the school’s special educational needs coordinator (SENCO).

What kind of questions would I get asked in an interview for a teaching job?
1. Why did you become a teacher?
2. What will you bring to our school?
3. How well do you get on with other staff?
4. How do you believe children learn?
5. What will your first lesson in the class be like?
6. What do you know about the National Curriculum?
7. Give an example of a teaching experience that shows why you are a great teacher.
8. Why are you keen to work at this school?

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Are you an Accountant wanting to enter the UK Accounting Job market?

Expanding your accounting career in London and the UK can be an exciting opportunity. Here are answers to some of the more commonly asked questions regarding the accounting recruitment industry in the UK.

Can I get a job in accounting, banking or finance before I leave home?

Most employers in the UK accounting job market turn to recruitment companies to fill their vacancies. Accounting recruitment firms are nearly always required to meet candidates face-to-face before putting their CV forward for any positions. As a result it is very rare to secure an accounting job before leaving home. In the rare circumstances where an Accountant secures a job in advance of arriving it is usually as a result of an internal transfer to the London office of a multinational firm.
What is the difference between a permanent accounting job and a contract accounting job?

A common misunderstanding is that contract or temp accounting jobs are not full-time. However most contract accounting jobs are full-time and therefore you earn the equivalent of, or often more than, a standard accounting salary. The key difference is that permanent accounting staff are employed by the company you are working for whereas contract staff are often employed by the recruitment firm and usually do not receive paid leave. Permanent accounting staff enjoy a higher level of job security whereas contract accountants often enjoy higher earnings and the opportunity to take advantage of certain tax benefits.

Am I limiting my chances of getting a permanent accounting job if I am also open to offers for contract accounting work?

The simple answer is no, employers looking for an accountant will be looking for the right fit of skills and experience with their team regardless of whether your accounting experience has been achieved in contract or permanent accounting positions. There is the obvious disadvantage that you may get offered a permanent accounting role while still completing an existing contract role but that can often be managed if you best accounting skills for the job. Accounting employers looking for accountants to take permanent roles will often look at the stability of an accountant in previous jobs. If you have moved job every three months it is an indicator of low stability and employers would be weary of offering a permanent accounting job to someone they believe is likely to leave after a few months.

Will having a youth mobility visa limit my chances of getting a full time accounting job?

The youth mobility visa now allows you to work the full two years in full time employment. This gives accounting employers confidence that if they put in the effort to teach you new systems and accounting procedures then they can get a good two years effort out of you provided that you are comfortable and motivated by the accounting position. So the chances of getting a full time accounting job are very good!

Do accounting recruiters specialise in different sectors of the accounting job market?

Accounting recruiters in London will typically split the accounting job market into four key sectors – Public Practice, Banking, Public Sector and Commerce. Public practice includes all accounting firms which are usually broken down into Big 4, Second tier accounting firms, mid-tier accounting firms and small or boutique accounting firms. Banking also includes the broader financial services sector such as investment funds and insurance. Public sector includes all government organisations including local and central government. Accounting recruiters will often align not-for-profit organisations such as Greenpeace within the public sector as well. Commerce is the largest sector which includes all your household name businesses and the not-so-household-name businesses. Accounting recruiters have various methods of breaking down this sector with common methods being by size or industry. Common industries used in the accounting job market are telecoms, media, manufacturing, fmcg.

As an experienced accountant will I be pigeon holed into the sector that I have experience in?

Employers looking to hire a new accountant want someone with relevant experience. As many accountants come from backgrounds in accounting firms this often provides experience across a number of industries due to servicing many clients in various industries. Large employers in the UK particularly like accountants from the Big 4 accounting firms for this reason. Most qualified and experienced accountants have enough transferable skills to move into new sectors and industries. The main sector that proves difficult to break out of is tax accounting.

What are the average pay rates for the UK accounting job market?

Below are indicative pay rates for contract and permanent positions in the UK accounting market.

Newly Qualified Chartered Accountant, £20 - £30 per hour, £35,000 - £50,000 salary
Part Qualified Chartered Accountant, £10 - £18 per hour, £18,000 - £30,000 salary
Experienced Chartered Accountant, £25 - £35 per hour, £40,000 - £60,000+ salary
Financial Controller, £300+ per day, £70,000+ salary
Accounts Payable, £6 - £12 per hour, £12,000 - £20,000 salary
Accounting Support, £6 - £12 per hour, £12,000 - £20,000 salary
Payroll, £6 - £12 per hour, £12,000 - £20,000 salary

Do employers in the UK accounting job market prefer accounting or finance qualifications over experience?

It’s probably obvious that they prefer both accounting experience and accounting qualifications but ultimately accounting experience counts for a lot. An accounting or finance qualification without any accounting experience is going to prove difficult breaking into the UK accounting job market. Whereas relevant accounting experience without a qualification is still probably going to get your foot in the door. In fact some employers prefer this scenario because they are in a position to offer a lower salary compared to a qualified accountant with similar experience.

Will my Chartered Accountant qualification be recognised by UK accounting employers?

Qualified accountants from Australia, Canada and New Zealand are well regarded in the UK accounting market. You do not need to transfer your qualification to the UK equivalent in order to find an accounting job.

Where will I find most accounting work in the UK?

London is the financial centre of the world and houses head quarters for many of the world’s largest multinational companies. As a result there is a constant need for experienced accountants in the local accounting job market. Other centres in the UK support small local accounting job markets but these are largely dwarfed by the size of London’s job market and therefore also the strength of its established accounting recruitment industry.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Thinking of finding a job in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Asia or the Middle East?

Working in the The United Kingdom

If you decide to move to the UK, the first two priorities are arranging a visa and finding a job. The United Kingdom is made up of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. It has a long history as a major player in international affairs and is one of the world's largest economies. The four most common UK visas for working in the UK are the ancestry visa, tier 1 highly skilled migrant visa, tier 2 sponsored work visa and the tier 5 youth mobility visa (formerly the working holiday visa). You are required to pay tax in the UK when you work regardless of whether you are a temporary or permanent employee. Income tax (known as PAYE) brackets in the UK are staggered based on your earnings. A part of your employment process will involve obtaining a National Insurance number. As the holder of a national insurance number you will be entitled to healthcare in the UK from the British National Health Service free of charge. National Insurance (NI) is automatically deducted from your salary and pays for pensions and health services in the UK.

There are many free activities in London that should not be missed. The markets, museums and festivals to name a few. Travelling to European destinations from London is easy. Weekend excursions into Europe are literally a short flight away. Finding a flat in the UK can be a lengthy process, not because there are a shortage of them but because you need to consider important factors such as location and public transport before moving in. Most UK flats are fully furnished and apart from buying bedding you will not need to make many purchases before moving in. Find a job in the UK and starting living the dream in Europe now!

Working in Australia

If you decide to move to Australia, the first two priorities are arranging a visa and finding a job. Australia is a large and diverse country but the majority of the population reside on the eastern side of the country in the main centres - Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. Find out more about your move to Australia. The three most common work visa options in Australia are employer sponsored work permits, skilled migrant visas and regional employment visas. You are required to pay tax in Australia when you work regardless of whether you are a temporary or permanent employee. The income tax year in Australia runs from 1st July to 30th June of the following year. Australia's national healthcare service is called Medicare and is administered by the Health Insurance Commission. It provides free treatment in public hospitals. And free or subsidised treatment by doctors, optometrists and dentists in certain cases.

Discover Australia's destinations, starting with icons such as the Red Centre, Kakadu National Park and the Great Barrier Reef. Just as distinct are Australia's cities, where the laidback lifestyle and cosmopolitan culture meet. Once you are in Australia you will truly appreciate it's beauty. Rented accommodation has traditionally been in short supply in most major cities, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne. The shortage of rental properties has seen a predictable increase in rents. Most properties in Australian cities are let through agents. Find a job in Australia and experience the beach culture and lifestyle at its best now!

Working in Asia

When you decide to move to Asia, the first two priorities are arranging a visa and finding a job. Hong Kong is a major banking centre that attracts talented high flyers and executives from all over the world. Singapore is widely regarded by economists as having the most successful free market economies in the world. To be able to work in Asia you will require a suitable visa or work permit. Most expats that work in Hong Kong, Singapore or Malaysia will have their work visa provided by their employer. Singapore enjoys a very well established and advanced healthcare system that is considered to have some of the highest standards in the world and is the envy of the region. Malaysia's hospitals are generally well equipped and its physicians are well-trained so you probably will not feel like missing anything from home. Hong Kong's taxation system is refreshingly simple. Residents and expats enjoy a relatively low rate of tax. Malaysia is a very tax friendly country. Income tax rates are low and many taxes which are raised in other countries, do not exist in Malaysia. Read more about paying tax in Asia.

Everything can be found in Hong Kong, from cinemas to theme parks, numerous restaurants serving food from all around the World and the Worlds finest hotels. Malaysia boasts of fine beaches, as well as the world's oldest tropical rainforest, some spectacular cave systems and also one of the tallest buildings in the world. Hong Kong is split into four sections, Kowloon, Hong Kong Island, New Territories and Outlying Islands. The rental market in Singapore is almost entirely supported by expatriates living in Singapore as nine out of ten Singaporean families are property owners. Compared to international standards, housing in Malaysia is quite cheap. In central Kuala Lumpur, however, prices tend to be quite high. Find a Job in Asia and experience the wonders and unique culture of Asia now!

Working in New Zealand

When you decide to move to New Zealand, the first two priorities are arranging a visa and finding a job. The main cities in New Zealand are Auckland (the largest city), Wellington (the capital) and Christchurch. There are also plenty of beautiful rural and small town spots to live and work when you immigrate. NZ Visa's come under two categories - permanent visas and temporary visas. If you want to live and work in New Zealand permanently the main options available are the Skilled Migrant visa and the Work to Residence visa. The cost of providing public health services is largely met from general taxation. All citizens and permanent residents are automatically entitled to state healthcare in NZ. You are required to pay tax in NZ when you work regardless of whether you are a temporary or permanent employee. NZ has a system of pay-as-you-earn (PAYE) that ensures that tax is deducted at source from employees' salaries.

Most people in New Zealand live within half an hour's drive of the coast, so swimming, boating, diving and fishing are almost national pastimes. Whether you want to jump out of a helicopter or simply kick a ball around, you won't have to travel far to get underway! The vast majority of homes in NZ are on one level and semi-detached houses are uncommon. You can find property for rent through rental agencies, estate agencies and in the small ads in local newspapers. Find a job in New Zealand and experience the natural wonders and beautiful scenery of New Zealand now!

Working in the Middle East

When you decide to move to the Middle East, the first two priorities are arranging a visa and finding a job. To be able to work in the Middle East you will require a suitable visa or work permit. Most expats that work in Dubai or Saudi Arabia will have their work visa provided by their employer. The quality of health care in Dubai & Saudi Arabia is generally high and equal to that in the West, except for highly specialised treatment. Owing to Dubai & Saudi Arabia's small population and the numerous medical facilities in the private and public sectors, long waiting lists are almost unheard of. Salaries in Dubai & Saudi Arabia are usually similar to or greater than those paid in western countries. However, because the region has no personal taxation, net income is usually much greater than in the West.

Most visitors are pleasantly surprised when they see Dubai and the cities of Saudi Arabia for the first time, the modern architecture co-existing with traditional houses and ancient wind-towers. New buildings are often spectacular, as oil has provided the money for the best architects, builders and materials. Find out more about your move to the Middle East. Find a job in The Middle East and start living it up in the Middle East now!

Professional Jobs Around the World

Accounting & Finance Jobs

Many professional sectors have skill shortages including the accounting and finance sector. Accounting practices have changed over the last few years, as a consequence these changes have lead to a more challenging practice and greater workloads for professionals, ultimately creating greater career opportunities for aspiring accounting and finance professionals. The accounting and finance job market is typically separated into four key industry sectors - Public Practice, Banking and Finance, Public Sector and the Commerce Sector. Your accounting skills will often be targeted towards one of these core sectors.

Engineering & Construction Jobs

Whether you are looking for permanent or temporary work, we offer a wide range of job options for professionals in the engineering and construction sector. Regardless of the economic climate we regularly see skill shortages around the globe right across the engineering and construction sector. Many of these vacancies are filled by recruitment agencies without being advertised, so we make it our job to ensure you are considered for all opportunities as they arise. Be part of the new wave of professionals taking the engineering and construction industry into the future.

Healthcare & Medical Jobs

Jobs within the health sector are located all throughout the globe and are made up of medical and dental practice work, private nursing, hospital, complementary medicine, ambulance transportation and other human health activities. The advances in technology and enviable range of comprehensive healthcare services around the world are constantly changing the face of healthcare, yet there are shortages of professionals to provide this care this offers greater career opportunities for skilled specialist in this profession.

Teaching Jobs

There is always a high demand for qualified experienced teachers around the world. The Teaching practices and requirements to teach can vary from country to country, in order to teach in most schools you require a current police clearance, must be a qualified teacher in your home country and be eligible for a working visa. The most effective way of landing a teaching job is to work with specialist teaching agencies that have hundreds of teaching vacancies just waiting for the right teacher.

Information Technology Jobs

The continual advances in technology around the globe means there are continual opportunities for career advancement with some of the best companies in the world. We regularly see a need for a variety of professionals right across the information technology sector from experienced developers to network management. Be part of the wave of professionals taking the world into the technological future.

Law Jobs

We regularly see a high demand for law specialist professionals around the globe. Majority of countries around the world have different legal systems, these differences also give rise to different training requirements and regulations, this means if you have an overseas law qualification your opportunities to practice in another jurisdiction may be limited. Most countries offer the opportunity to apply for an assessment of your qualifications, where you can find yourself more easily than expected being accepted to work in many countries and different jurisdictions. The most effective way of gaining employment with quality world renowned companies is to work with specialist recruitment agencies that fill job vacancies before they arise.

Find a Job in any Corner of the World

Mi4Corners specialty is matching specialist professionals with world renowned specialist agencies. We assist professionals with finding employment in any corner of the globe whether its domestic or international. Our specialty is working closely with job seekers and specialist recruitment agencies in making career dreams come true in countries and regions such as The United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, The Middle East and the rest of the world.