EnglishTown Reviews | Glassdoor

EnglishTown Reviews

Updated August 15, 2017
45 reviews

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2.3
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45 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Great flexible work option which allows you to work with people around the world (in 4 reviews)

  • Pros: Flexible schedule, working with students all over the world (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • you spend most of your time fixing other students technical problems than teaching (in 7 reviews)

  • No benefits (but that's to be expected in this type of position) (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "BEST online ESL teaching job!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Online English Teacher in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Online English Teacher in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    -no experience necessary; training provided
    -lesson plans are already prepared & classes are conversational in nature
    -students are awesome
    -management is really great to work with & they're understanding
    -very generous & frequent pay raises
    -online social network to connect to other teachers
    -FLEXIBILITY! working from home
    -able to adjust your hours from week to week

    Cons

    -limited to working 38 hours per week

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work! Thanks for listening to your teachers & making changes accordingly.


  2. "Scamming people"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at EnglishTown part-time

    Pros

    You can schedule your hours when you want to.

    Cons

    This company will rip you off if you don't keep explicit details of all the work you complete. There are two instances already in which I completed assigned work, submitted an invoice, and was then told that I submitted too many hours and I was not going to paid. In another instance, I was told I was going to be penalized for not submitting work that was not even on my schedule. Someone else's work was not completed and they were emailing me about it. Unacceptable.

    Advice to Management

    Stop automating everything. Stop treating the teachers like robots. Have actual people teachers can talk to. Also, make sure your invoicing is correct. Not paying teachers for services provided is illegal.

  3. Helpful (3)

    "No Continuity"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Teacher
    Former Employee - Teacher
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at EnglishTown part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Lessons are prepared for you.
    Great returning students, when they return.
    There are some really, really amazing students at all levels.
    Most senior staff responds quickly but a lot of it is just "cut and paste" responses.

    Cons

    lessons are prepared for you and are terrible for the most part. It's better to ad-lib and some of the topics you're forced to teach! Ish.
    It's hard to get to know any one student because their classes are so randomly scheduled.
    You don't really want to have the same student more than once if they give you less that a 5 because they'll continuing ruining your score.
    You can't decline a student if you don't get along with them.
    Students are all in the wrong levels and there's no way to fix it as a teacher.
    Pay is based on student feedback.
    I don't know who my supervisor was because there would always be new people contacting me about different aspects and there's not really one email that tells you each position and person's name.
    The starting pay is really low for what you're doing, even if it is a more "relaxed" job for some than others and it's nearly impossible to increase your pay.
    The future direction they're going is TERRIBLE. They're changing platforms from decent to terrible.
    Now you have to look at the student in their house, often times without a shirt on and there's no way to remove their video without asking them to do it nicely.
    It was better when there were absolutely no videos.
    No benefits. At least provide health insurance or something to offset pay.
    Despite the globe being 24 hours, the highest peak times to get hours are usually while you should be eating dinner or on the weekends.
    Inconsistent hours, one week it may be 38 and the next 2.
    They look at "averages' when they should look at specific cases and specific cases when they should look at averages.

    Advice to Management

    Give your teachers more money, change the way salaries are increased, work on fixing content not style. There are so many pictures and prompts that are just ridiculous.
    Stop sending so many junk emails about things people already know about and instead only focus on what's important, including a list of admin with their emails.


  4. Helpful (6)

    "Pros & Cons"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Pros: Flexible schedule, working with students all over the world

    I love teaching but found after a few years with EF that it was more trouble than it was worth.

    Cons

    Cons: They are constantly finding reasons not to pay you (and the pay is already pretty low for teaching), there are times when there is limited availability in slow seasons and while you are expected to be patient during these times, if you find a secondary work and things pick up, they are not so patient about your hours of availability.

    In addition - the requirements changed and increased over time while the pay increase was only slight. I was supposed to be earning $12/hr but factoring in the time with custom lesson plan preparation or just general plan prep and grading that often times went beyond the 15 mins you're supposed to theoretically spend, I was probably making more like $6 or $7/hr.

    Advice to Management

    While it is understandable that companies grow, I think as greater demands are put on teachers, it would behoove you to adequately compensate them. A fair wage would be closer to a $20/hr minimum for a decent teacher and while it may not be intentional - you do leave your teachers feeling under appreciated as well as used and abused. You'll lose a lot of great talent that way!


  5. "Great place to work!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Teacher
    Current Employee - Teacher
    Recommends

    Pros

    Great flexible work option which allows you to work with people around the world! The staff is great and helpful.

    Cons

    None I can think of.


  6. Helpful (6)

    "No support"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Online Teacher
    Former Employee - Online Teacher
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Flexible hours when classes are available.
    When I started there was no cap on hours and they paid a Christmas bonus. Now they only send you messages to tell you you're not getting paid for something.

    Cons

    It was getting tough to get hours.
    The only feedback I received for staff was from reports.
    The only feedback from students was usually a number. Students that didn't give a 1 or a 2 rarely let you know why they were unhappy.
    When you ask for help they tell you to listen to recordings.
    Classes never become available the same time each week and if you don't reserve them yourself you just get the scraps.
    And the students are mostly in classes beyond there level and are being passed by the high rated teachers.

    Advice to Management

    Learn how to do your job


  7. Helpful (7)

    "Sure it's flexible but..."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Online English Teacher in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Online English Teacher in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Flexible hours, pays on time (often early), if you make a mistake on an invoice they'll still pay what they owe you. Regular pay raises, but...

    Cons

    You're not really there to teach English. You're there to sell classes. You can get great student reviews by heaping praise upon students and the office will love you.

    Horrible, horrible support from the Boston office. If you have an emergency and follow procedure, they will still mark you as not showing and you can lose a week's work. You get regular pay raises -- but you also get fewer scheduled hours after you get that raise. People assigned to review you can't manage to do it in a reasonable amount of time. 1 minute late could cost you a raise. Many of your "colleagues" that you'll never meet are unprepared or unqualified.

    Advice to Management

    This is teaching, it's not making widgets. Stop acting like an educational institution if you don't want to be one.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Pros and Cons"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at EnglishTown part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Flexible hours and usually nice students to work with

    Cons

    Technical problems with every class (either for the teacher or the students,) constantly changing requirements (usually to the detriment of the teachers,) support via skype unpredictable and usually more than 1 person will give you conflicting advice.

    Advice to Management

    Looking at your teachers as more than just robots would be a good start. Focusing on how people are ACTUALLY teaching would be even better.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Flexible job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Flexible hours and great students

    Cons

    The starting pay rate is quite low and you have to do a decent amount of planning/grading that isn't paid.


  10. Helpful (13)

    "They are lucky to get one whole star."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at EnglishTown part-time

    Pros

    You have control over your schedule. I like this because I have control over my vacation time. This is a feature that I will miss.

    Also, the regular students that I have make my job rewarding. I love them and they make it worthwhile.

    Cons

    This company is so horrible. I could go on but everyone else has pretty much said what needed to be said. I am on the verge of losing my job at EF because I have a 4 in the GL. A FOUR!!!! Four our of five stars is not bad...UNLESS YOU WORK AT ENGLISHTOWN. So five students can give you a 4 in a GL with positive comments but that still means you will lose your job? Ridiculous. GL are horrible...you spend most of your time fixing other students technical problems than teaching. It's laughable. If you are lucky, everybody's mics work!

    The management is horrible. Ever since they added the China server all heck has broke lose. I have gotten low ratings from Chinese students because most of them still prefer a blonde hair, blue eyed or white American teacher. I reported this issue many times only to be told that "no one at EF should discriminate" but how can that be prevented when you are requiring teachers to have a photograph, do mandatory video CP20s, and not looking into classes thoroughly but instead go by ES scores?

    This company doesn't care about how good of a teacher you are or how many of your students love you. They only care about money and ES scores. They don't wanna have to pay you what you deserve to they make it hard for you to keep your job and/or get a raise. The teachers who have been there for years are either bitter, half-crazy or delusional. The "mentor" assigned to you won't be much of a help at all unless you are just lucky. My mentor was snappy and I did not really care for her.

    Plus, you earn a 60-hour TEFL (Thank God that I have a REAL 170-hour TEFL) after working a few months but the standard requirement is more than 100 hours. What in the WORLD kind of real EFL work is someone going to get with a 60-hour TEFL? What a joke! They need to just stop altogether!

    Last but not least, the students---Englishtown doesn't care about their students! They just want their money. Go to Englishtown's Facebook page and look at the hundreds of low ratings and rants in different languages from students that are dissatisfied.

    The ESL Market is all about money. If you want a real job in the ESL field, get a TEFL or MA in TESOL and get work at a public school or university where you will get real benefits and tenure. Stay away from all of these language schools. They are all about money.

    Oh yeah, and please get real educators to create lessons! Those lessons are terrible!

    Advice to Management

    Just close down Englishtown already!


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