With over 2,500 FE professionals registered in just three months the FEjobs.com website launched at the beginning of the year is off to a flying start. Over 25% of AoC colleges have signed up for the service and feedback has been very encouraging.
North Hertfordshire College operates from 4 sites in Hitchin, Letchworth and Stevenage - the latter being newly built and the subject of a recent investment in state-of-the-art IT delivery. Over 14,000 students each year are taught by 500 permanent staff and agency lecturers. Carol Ashby has worked at the College for 5 years as HR manager. She is enthusiastic about the FEjobs.com service saying:
'We are saving around 3 or 4 days in the overall application process as applications can be sent in directly online to the HR department saving hours of administrative work.
Job descriptions and terms and conditions can be easily linked to vacancies online so applicants can view and download a complete application pack and don't have to wait for forms to arrive in the post. The FEjobs service is even able to display the jobs vacancies on our own College website, saving further administrative time for our HR staff.
Like most FE colleges we do not have a lot of money to spend on recruitment advertising. By paying for a yearly license we can upload all our vacancies; teaching, managerial and learning support. Furthermore vacancies appear in the Independent newspaper.
FEjobs.com site function also helps us reach candidates who may not have thought of applying to our college- they will now see North Hertfordshire's vacancies when they search by 'faculty' on the site.”
Another member, Bournemouth and Poole College, started using FEjobs in February 2005 shortly after the site launched.
College HR manager, Debbie Cohen explains:
“We have a staff of 1400 working across six sites in the locality. Traditionally we have relied on advertising job vacancies in the local press, the TES and on our own ‘jobs@thecollege’ section of our website, whilst still exploring ways of reaching a wider audience.
We view FEjobs.com as a tool which enhances our previous recruitment methods and enables us to reach people who are searching online for lecturing or admin positions in FE. Setting up the service was easily done and completed in a couple of days without the need for special software or equipment.”
FEjobs took the college’s standard documents from their recruitment pack, including their Equal Opportunities policy, prospectus, college logo, local map and put them on the website for applicants to download. They also created an editable version of the college’s own application form for candidates to complete and send online.
Debbie added: “As soon as we have a vacancy available we can log onto the FEjobs site and type in the full details, which become ‘live’ on the site immediately. Candidates can fill in our application form online and email it directly to us or download it for completion. This has saved us a lot of repetitive paperwork and time. At interview we simply ask applicants to sign their emailed application form to confirm the details are correct.”
As part of the service, FEjobs also automatically adds any recruitment vacancies to their regional weekly bulletin which is sent electronically to all registered site users in the local area.
HR staff at Bournemouth & Poole college have found that by integrating this service they can substantially reduce the lead time between advertising to appointment. Summing up, Debbie said:
“FEjobs.com is becoming a very valuable tool, assisting us in attracting good quality applicants who either have FE experience or who are new to the sector.”
Colleges can use the site on a pay-per-vacancy basis for £125 per vacancy or buy an annual licence, where they can upload unlimited vacancies, at a special introductory offer of £2500.
There is no need for special equipment or software and setting the college up to upload vacancies directly to the site takes around 48 hours.