- General Best Practices
ISC Research, the leading provider of data and intelligence on the international school market, wrote in a recent blog, “meeting the need for skilled, experienced teachers who are trained in the teaching and learning approaches that international schools require, could well be the biggest challenge for the future of the international schools market."
“The professional capital supply challenge is one that many international schools are facing today. It’s evident in the race for the best new recruits and in the salary and benefits packages that schools have to offer. It is a supply challenge that will increase while student enrolment continues to grow,” states the ISC Research article.
With this projected shortage in the coming years, recruiting quality teachers will only get harder; schools need to stay ahead of the issue if they want to survive. Whatever method you use to recruit faculty — fairs, recruiters, referrals - all avenues eventually lead prospective faculty to your website. Have you looked at your website with prospective faculty in mind?
The shortage also means that teachers will have more choices and will be smarter “shoppers” when looking for a right fit school. These three tips will help ensure you are attracting the best candidates.
Finalsite works with more than 225 international schools of all sizes and budgets
1. Make sure it is easy to find prospective faculty information.
Finding the recruitment pages should not be hard; words like Join Us and even Prospective Faculty are easy starting points. Having a prominent spot on your website is critical — whether it be in the main navigation, a call-to-action or an intuitive menu item.
Zurich International School places equal importance on prospective employees on their homepage, right next to prospective families.
Hong Kong International School opted for “Join Us”, making it very easy for prospective staff to find.
How long does it take to find your school recruitment page and what’s it like once you get there? This is a good segue to tip #2.
2. Provide as much relevant information as possible.
As obvious as it sounds, so many schools don’t share all the great reasons faculty would want to join. From openings, to benefits, the campus, to life in the city - this is all critical information prospective faculty want to know if they are going to consider you school. Your communications team should work with Human Resources to create content that sells.
ICS Addis Ababa is a good example; they lead with a photo with emotional appeal. This school looks fun to work at!
Storytelling works for recruitment as well. The Chinese International School in Hong Kong includes faculty videos that provide a nice personal touch.
And Tanglin Trust School includes some nice call-to-actions on their employment page which lead to key content further engaging prospective faculty.
There are so many ways to display this information and so much of a school’s content used to recruit students can be reused or tweaked to fit in this area as well. It’s of course not all about the salary and the benefits - it’s about fitting in.
Teachers spend days, nights and weekends at school, so showcasing your campus can also be a big selling point. Singapore American School provides great visuals on their campus tour.
3. Make them want to be a part of your story.
As an international school parent of three children, teachers are the heart and soul of the school. They spend long hours during the day and often travel with clubs and teams on the weekend — many international schools will tell you they are a family. So does your school sell that value or some other value?
Knowing who your potential colleagues are and what they are passionate about can be a critical decision point for some. Rotterdam International Secondary School is making the effort to document the stories of their staff - which in fact is also a great selling point for parents who are looking to learn more about their children's teachers.
Chadwick School’s interactive faculty directory is both humorous and informative telling us both professional and personal information about their team.
Invest time and resources in your website recruitment pages in order to insure that you hire teachers who are a good fit for your school and will enable you to continue to succeed in the ever growing international school market.
To close out with a school who ties it all together well, Shanghai American School has created a video telling a comprehensive story not only from the teachers prospective but also the students, and at the same time showcasing their amazing facilities.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
As part of Finalsite's marketing team, Debbie has worked with international schools for the past 8 years while living in both Asia and Europe. From conference planning and presentations, to association events, and client success stories, she helps schools understand how they can maximize their web presence while partnering with Finalsite. In her free time she enjoys traveling and attending events at her children's international school in Berlin, Germany.
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