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State of the ESL economy: Is the party over?
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withgusto



Joined: 11 Mar 2010

PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 9:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Check the recent response I received from a 'recruiter'. Do you think I should continue negotiations with them?



"This is ^^^ working for ^^^. in South Korea.
I read your application as well.
Honestly nowadays basic salary who does not have experience to teach in Korea is 2.1 mil won. And competition among foreign teachers to get a Seoul position is really intense so far. Even STAUNCH institute's principals in Seoul tell me they want teacher who has degree in English or Education or Teacher license. Because economy in Korea is bad like the world does. (Also Swine Flu (H1N1)... It makes schools hard to hire new people now...). Even some schools donít care TEFL, TESOL. Institute needs to prove they have good quality teachers for students. Most foreign teachers who already stay in Korea currently, they are extending to contract with institutes for next year. Because they heard there are no opportunities to make money back home now. I think you donít want to work for bad institute during your rest of contracted days. So Iím telling you about present scene of Teaching in Korea. Anyway I didnít mean to knock you down about it. But if my say made you it, I apologize to you.
So I've attached the position. Also I attached photos of neighborhood each, I hope it helps understanding about neighborhood by those photos.
If you are interested this position, I will send your resume and photo to them for appointment of interview.
I hope we can discuss about it more soon. Thank you." Smile Mad Confused Cool Crying or Very sad
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fergalreid



Joined: 02 Apr 2010
Location: Dublin, Ireland

PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

withgusto wrote:
Check the recent response I received from a 'recruiter'. Do you think I should continue negotiations with them?



"This is ^^^ working for ^^^. in South Korea.
I read your application as well.
Honestly nowadays basic salary who does not have experience to teach in Korea is 2.1 mil won. And competition among foreign teachers to get a Seoul position is really intense so far. Even STAUNCH institute's principals in Seoul tell me they want teacher who has degree in English or Education or Teacher license. Because economy in Korea is bad like the world does. (Also Swine Flu (H1N1)... It makes schools hard to hire new people now...). Even some schools donít care TEFL, TESOL. Institute needs to prove they have good quality teachers for students. Most foreign teachers who already stay in Korea currently, they are extending to contract with institutes for next year. Because they heard there are no opportunities to make money back home now. I think you donít want to work for bad institute during your rest of contracted days. So Iím telling you about present scene of Teaching in Korea. Anyway I didnít mean to knock you down about it. But if my say made you it, I apologize to you.
So I've attached the position. Also I attached photos of neighborhood each, I hope it helps understanding about neighborhood by those photos.
If you are interested this position, I will send your resume and photo to them for appointment of interview.
I hope we can discuss about it more soon. Thank you." Smile Mad Confused Cool Crying or Very sad


Would you mind telling the rest of us the recruiter for our own good? They clearly don't want to represent you, it would appear.
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oldfatfarang



Joined: 19 May 2005
Location: On the road to somewhere.

PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They're lowballing your salary. Don't fall for it (like I did when I first came to Korea). Trying to beat down salary is a standard management practice in Korea.

Get a new recruiter. Believe me, you don't want to work a year in a hakwon for a below-par salary.
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creeper1



Joined: 30 Jan 2007

PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 4:57 pm    Post subject: tend to be Reply with quote

Well the starting salary for someone without experience is 2.0 million in a PS. In a hagwon you could mayble expect a little more - 2.1 million seems reasonable assuming you're doing 22 classes without any Saturday work.
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oldfatfarang



Joined: 19 May 2005
Location: On the road to somewhere.

PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

- Recruiter low balls unsuspecting newbie's wages.
- Emloyer promises recruiter further commissions.
- Employer uses savings to go Business Loom.
- Newbie arrives to find his new mates all earn more than him (for same work).

Today's Game: Spot the unhappy one.
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Smee



Joined: 24 Dec 2004
Location: Jeollanam-do

PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting that some are talking about hiring only licensed teachers. Some recruiters, including those who hire for GEPIK and SMOE, are turning away older, experienced teachers who would fall into the highest pay level:

http://briandeutsch.blogspot.com/2010/04/no-room-for-older-experienced-teachers.html
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World Traveler



Joined: 29 May 2009

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 6:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dharma_Blue wrote:
asylum seeker wrote:
Those planning on staying here the rest of their lives are banking on the fact that wages and conditions here will stay at the level they are now indefinitely or will even improve but I don't think that's realistic. The increasing saturation of the job market is going to give employers the opportunity to keep offering worse and worse conditions knowing the desperate will still take the jobs anyway not to mention as you age you will face increasing job discrimination as many employers prefer younger applicants.


Employers in the west also discriminate based on age, they just do so in a covert way.

But the old "The West is just as bad" reasoning does not hold true here, and here's why:
Ages (and photos) are not required (or even appropriate) on Western resumes. People hired young don't get unceremoniously dumped once they become old. My mother was a teacher. Last year the school district was looking to save money, so they figured it would be cheaper to hire newbs while retiring people at the top of the pay scale. Did they fire the old hands? Of course not. There is a strong union protecting teachers, and in fact, once you've been teaching for a year, it is almost impossible to get fired. What the school did then is offer an incentive of $25,000 for anyone willing to retire. My mother took it and retired at age 55 with pension payouts of roughly 40k a year for the rest of her life, plus continuing (good) health benefits for her and her spouse. What are the pension benefits you get when you retire in Korea? Certainly not 40k a year. (Also, my mother will get social security- because she paid into it- once she turns 62.)

TL;DR- There is more aged based discrimination (and less job security) in the ESL industry.
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misher



Joined: 14 Oct 2008

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 6:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The ESL/EFL industry won't go anywhere. There will always be jobs its just that they will pay at a fraction of what they paid 15-20 years ago.

Employers will demand more for less because they can and with the ease of getting an MA TESOL these days, its just a race to the bottom as far as I'm concerned. It's a great side job or career choice for people that want to remain single and travel but if you're thinking about family, your spouse better have some earning potential.

Japan is a great country to see where EFL is going, especially in Seoul. Starting salary for noobs is now 190,000-220,000 when it used to be 250,000 ten years ago. University English teaching now requires an MA and publications just to get an interview. And that is just to teach conversational English and TEOIC like anyone would already be doing in XYZ hagwon for 25-30 contact hours a week.

Sooner or later you'll see uni jobs in Seoul not giving housing. Then the contact hours will increase and camps REQUIRED over summer breaks for no additional pay. The writing is on the wall. Just sayin'
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ttompatz



Joined: 05 Sep 2005
Location: Kwangju, South Korea

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's make sure everyone is on the same page.

Is there age discrimination = sort of.

Do they want young blood for entry level jobs = yes. Same as at home.
Do they want old guys (girls) for entry level jobs = No. Same as at home.

Is there job security = yes and no.

No in that you won't be working for one employer for 30 years before you retire out to a fat pension but those jobs are largely gone at home too.

No in that hagwons don't want experienced teachers at experienced level wages for an entry level job. They don't want experienced teachers at entry level wages for an entry level job either. They bring too much baggage with them.

Yes in that there are always jobs if you are willing to follow the money.

In the 90's Japan was the place to be. Big salaries, easy jobs, celebrity type status. The industry matured. Jobs disappeared and wages stagnated until the industry reached an equilibrium.

In the first decade of the 21st century Korea was going through the same thing. Growth was in the double digits. Jobs were easy to find, money was easy and people started to tell their friends.

2012 and the same forces are in play in Korea as were in play in Japan in the late 90s. The industry matured. Jobs disappeared and wages stagnate until the industry will again reach an equilibrium.

China is on the ascendency. Demand for "native speakers" outstrips supply by about double. Jobs are easy to find. Wages now, at the entry level (for those who qualify for an E2) have gone from lows of 3000 rmb (5 short years ago) to highs of 15,000 rmb + benefits.

There is "job security" in that there is always a job somewhere. But you have to be willing to follow the jobs. The industry itself is transient.

Now the flip side of that coin.

IF you are "experienced" but have not updated your credentials or maintained your professional development over the years then you are now a much older "entry level" teacher and still looking at those same entry level jobs.

As the markets mature there ARE other options but they do require you to improve your credentials (that doesn't always mean get an MA).

Workshops - conferences / CELTA / DELTA / DipT / PGCE / teacher certification ...
1 to 3-days / 30-days / 90-days / 6-months / 1-year / 2-years.

No, it is not free but they don't exactly break the bank either.
They get you past that glass ceiling and into better jobs.

If you are in this for the GAP-YEAR (or 3) experience then enjoy it and go home.

If you plan to make a career (or a long term job) out of it then professional development is not just a catch phrase. Move up - move on - move out. Pick one.

.
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