Preparing to negotiate. . .

Discussion in 'Science Technicians - General Discussion' started by Jimbob1988, Dec 3, 2019.

  1. So, if anyone feels free to pass on any of their wisdom, please do, but here is my current situation:
    - I am now a lone technician (untrained), and the person who is going to help me starts last week (although I've heard this as a rumor) of term and it seems this person is on the same 'level' as me
    - They will not train me up as a senior science technician as I am going into teacher training, yet as someone untrained, I feel uncomfortable.
    - The main reason I went to be a science technician was to improve my practical knowledge to then help me get into teaching. I don't even have the time to test practicals as there is too much work for me here (and I REFUSE) to work in my breaks etc.
    - I am with an agency and come April, my pay will drop. I travel to Watford from London and this drop will not be financially stable.
    - I need to get an idea of wages for technicians/new senior techs, as I am unsure where to negotiate.

    I am thinking of using this to negotiate something and get it in writing will I am the only technician here.

  2. I work alongside another Technician and are term time only and on the same level. Pay is around 12-15k depending on experience and we are in the South East. Hope this helps.
    GeorgetheScienceTech likes this.
  3. How much would that equate to if you worked all year? Thank you for the information :)
  4. Does the school know your intentions of going into teaching and that you are only doing this in prep for teacher training? If the answer is yes, then sorry to say you have zero negotiating power as they won't invest in someone they know could leave at any moment...
    The other thing working against you is that they now brought in someone else who is more trained which means they can afford to lose you because you have shown them the department can function with only 1 technician.

    Sorry to sound blunt/negative, but I am just talking from the point of view of senior management.
    In the situation where schools are doing everything possible to cut down on support staff, you really need a strong hand to stand a chance at getting a pay rise.
    Jaytee likes this.
  5. for London NJC scale 5 for a technician, higher for senior.
  6. The department can not function with only one person firstly - big concessions have been made and all it takes is a message to the H&S lady of our trust to point out what I can't do (e.g. clear the chemicals).

    Secondly, teacher training is easy to access in many schools, and this school isn't local to me. That's the beauty of being short of science teachers - i can train many places, and I still have suspended my PGCE, so who is to say I will not continue this back with my university?

    The person who is 'more trained' failed to spot them adding water to an acid when making a solution, so I am not sure what 'trained' would mean in this circumstance. Oh, and this person can't work the full hours. Schools can cut back, but I assure you, if there is a build up of chemical waste etc, I will make my concerns heard - trained or untrained.
  7. Oh, and no one has ordered new supplies, done the lab checks, fixed the items etc etc, and I won't be doing this on my own. Ive been asked to do the lab checks only during the staff inset day - there is not enough time to do it any other part of the day.

    My HoD knows about my lack of knowledge in Physical practicals, which was highlighted by the fact I don't have the time to learn about more of the 'complicated' demos. So it is not as if everything is being swept under the carpet.
    Shannon likes this.
  8. How many students at this school?
  9. 1000 (5 wet labs & 4 dry ones)
  10. I have to say Emil that you were very blunt. However I agree with what you said.
    Jan @Jan 157 157 that is shocking pay for the South East.;)
    stegaryholt and stelden like this.
  11. I guess then it will be the HoD to order the supplies, do the lab checks etc, as you can be rest assured, it won't be happening in my own time :D
    Beaker likes this.
  12. It won't be the HoD, it will be the other technician doing it just like you've been doing it when being lone tech no less. It doesn't matter if they won't do a good job as you as long as it just gets done to some degree.

    I'm on your side here but the point I was making is that it isn't us you need to convince, it's senior management. All the details you mentioned are irrelevant to them because it will all boil down to whether they can call the same agency you came from and get Jimbob1988 the 2nd. They successfully did it once, why not again? This is what will be going through their minds.

    They have no incentive to invest in you when they know you are only using this job as a temporary stop gap, so you need to be prepared to address this during the interview as that will be their main concern and likely your biggest challenge above anything else.
  13. I'd be out of there if i was you, there are plenty of other jobs science technician jobs on
    Emil Retaw likes this.
  14. FTE 17-21K (NJC 37 hour wk)
  15. If the school are paying an agency fee I would say you have zero chance of getting any extra money out of them at the moment.

    If I was you i would be looking at the wages for the job/area which I agree with @Jan 157 and add London Waiting.. If that is unsustainable for you then you need to vote with your feet. Technician jobs come up in London on a regular basis and you have till April to make it happen.

    Get the senior tech role out of your head. Concentrate on learning your craft, you have much more bargaining power when you know the ins and outs of your job rather than just being available.
  16. Yes I agree with all that you've said. Entering a Technician role involves gaining knowledge and experience and this can be a very steep learing curve. Many schools seem to prefer using Agency staff to avoid the extra costs e.g. National Insurance and local Goverment pensions contributions.:(
  17. I'm not sure you have much bargaining power here, you're agency staff who's not planning on staying long term so there's little incentive for them to invest in you and its only a phone call for them to get another agency staff in.
    Have a look on your local authority website, there should be some information somewhere showing what their pay structure is. When I started here I had zero joy in negotiating. I was told where I would start on the pay scale and it was like it or lump it.
    Jaytee likes this.
  18. Thanks guys. I will do this.

    If new agency staff are so easy to get, then why has this not been done sooner? I just wish to learn this role more and learn. Only thing for me is I may be learning to teach here in September (T&C's apply!).
  19. The problem with working for an Agency as a Technician is that you could be working at an Institution for only a day if you get on the wrong side of the Teaching staff or HoD.:(:(:(
  20. How about being a cover teacher through an agency until you do your teacher training? I think that would give you better experience of being a teacher than doing technician work. It's good you've had experience as a science technician but the majority of secondary school teaching is crowd control.
    l johnson, Jaytee and Julie Delaney like this.