EF Education First Online English Teacher Reviews

Updated 5 Aug 2020

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2.7
47%
Recommend to a Friend
43%
Approve of CEO
EF Education First CEO  Dr. Edward Hult
Dr. Edward Hult
21 Ratings
  1. "Good company"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Home-based Online English Teacher in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at EF Education First part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    1. Good training 2. Good communication 3. Nice, hard-working students 4. Good material to work with

    Cons

    1. The pay is a bit on the low side. You spend a lot of time preparing and then reporting on the class. This aspect should be accounted for in the pay

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  2. "Lots of cons"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Online English Teacher in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at EF Education First part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    - You can choose your own hours - Some students are really nice

    Cons

    - Inconsistent hours of working. You may be available for 6 hours a day but only get given 3 hours, all with annoying gaps of 45/60 minutes in between. - Lots of students fail to turn up to private lessons and teachers only get paid a fraction of the full hour if this happens. Students who consistently do this aren't punished and the company offers little support to teachers who experience students doing this - The pay is really low and they expect you to answer emails and spend time writing reports for each student after the lesson which is time consuming and further reduces the rate. - When you enter a group lesson you have no idea what level or topic you're teaching until you enter the classroom at the same time as the students. This means you feel pressurised and often have no idea what is coming up in the lesson. - The lesson content is also really difficult to follow when you have limited time to prepare for what you're going to teach. The target language for the lesson can only be found on one or two particular pages and there's no way that teachers can look ahead or check the teacher notes on other slides during the lesson. - They operate a bonus system based entirely on student ratings for the lessons you teach. These ratings are completely subjective and if a student doesn't like you for whatever reason, they can affect your monthly average rating with a low score which affects your chances of receiving a bonus.

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  3. Helpful (2)

    "Well structured inconsistent hours and pay"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Online English Teacher in Cheltenham, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at EF Education First

    Pros

    Well structured lessons with easily understandable aims. Good interface and polite students. Good initial training.

    Cons

    The pay structure is terrible, £9.75 maximum per hour lesson with 50p increase every year of work. Worked there for 2 months before getting paid for the first time. Inconsistent hours, 8 hour availability can produce anywhere between 3-7 hours work.

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  4. COVID-19

    "Opaque, automated and autocratic"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Online English Teacher in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at EF Education First part-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Online working is a safe option during a global pandemic. Many of the students are entertaining. In comparison to other companies, this TEFL site does appear to comply with employment laws, i.e. you will have a contract, minimal statuary rights and you will be paid as expected.

    Cons

    Working from home does offer some freedom and flexibility, however the hours are not guaranteed. If we worked in offices our employer would provide the equipment, pay the heating and lighting and we would benefit from face-to-face interaction with colleagues. This company pays above minimum wage but requires a significant investment from workers, i.e. headphones, strong internet and a comfortable, well-lit home office. Moreover, the significant screen time required to earn a living wage is a definite disadvantage. As we are hourly paid, taking breaks is not incentivised, reporting errors in the teaching slides is also unpaid. We are expected to check emails daily, this is unpaid. Preparation is assumed but unpaid. You are expected to arrive early for your class, but you will not be paid. The reports frequently take longer than the allocated time to complete. You will be expected to respond to student emails for free. Training is now paid, however we are encouraged to join online Zoom meetings for free. Online teaching is very demanding. The recent Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated just how draining video conferences can be, now imagine you cannot turn your camera off and you are not paid for those desperately needed breaks away from the screen. However, the worst aspect is that the teachers have so little control over the teaching materials which are frequently filled with errors. We are also unable to access an entire course or perceive how the different roles interact. Everything is very segmented, you cannot see how the resources are designed, or how the people beyond your role operate. I suspect this is because the company perceives each contractor as a potential competitor. However, it makes teachers feel like intensively farmed animals, churning out classes, trapped in low wage, low autonomy anonymity.

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    EF Education First Response

    July 27, 2020Engagement and Retention Specialist

    Thanks for taking the time to share your detailed feedback with us about your teaching experience with EF, both the good and not-so-good. We are delighted to hear that you, like so many of our teachers, enjoyed your interactions with learners, and that you could teach from the safety of your home, particularly during this pandemic. Like with most things, there are advantages and disadvantages, and you’ve shared some disadvantages of working from home for you. Concerning scheduling, available class hours come from student demand, and unfortunately that is something that is outside of our control. And with regards to breaks, we do always encourage teachers to take breaks, and while not paid, you are in control of your schedule and can and should plan breaks for yourself. Mandatory teacher training is paid at the UK Centre, regardless of where it is hosted, however optional webinars are not paid, but attendance is encouraged to keep up to date and connected. Regarding our content, we have all content accessible to teachers in the demo room, and where possible, we do share upcoming class lists. We will report your comment on frequent errors to our editorial team and make a conscious effort to get more teacher input when there are product changes, such as the video GL. Thanks again for your feedback.

  5. Helpful (2)

    "The cons outweigh the pros..."

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Online English Teacher 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at EF Education First for less than a year

    Pros

    Some pros are thay you’re able to create your own schedule and the kids are wonderful to teach. They also have newsletters that come out periodically that are sometimes helpful.

    Cons

    Unfortunately, there are so many, and I’ve only been here a short time. Firstly, it takes awhile to build up a good schedule for yourself, at least a couple months. So make sure this is definitely a good side job or something for stay at home moms. Second, the computer training for the classroom platform is next to none. You’ll have to learn as you go and you’ll probably make some mistakes along the way, Another issue I’ve encountered is communication with those working to correct the errors with the new system (Teacher First) I had to open so many cases with so many issues, they were very ill prepared. With any website (especially a new one) there’s going to be issues and I think they underestimated it. Honestly, communication with those at HQ is really bad in general. You’re not listened to as an employee and when you are, you’re taken in circles to get the answers you’re looking for. There’s quite a few more cons but these are the ones I think new or potential teachers should be aware of. I know the frustrations I’ve felt over the short time I’ve been here have baffled me and I wouldn’t wish the same for others.

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  6. Helpful (1)

    "Working at EF South Africa"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Online English Teacher in Bryanston
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at EF Education First full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    You get to meet a lot of different people who can either be really cool or mean. The other teachers are also great to work with.

    Cons

    Non-existent HR. You have to ask for your payslip, they tax you way more than what they should. If you early around R 10,000 in RSA, then tax should be around R610. Not at EF! They will tax you close to R1500 which is fraudulent. Teachers there are afraid to speak out because if you speak, you are one step closer to the door. The work is not bad at all but management is horrible. You can be sick as a dog but they will give you a hard time if you want to skip work and go see a doctor. My time there wasnt pleasant at all. Lastly, there is no professional development.

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    EF Education First Response

    July 8, 2020Engagement and Retention Specialist

    Thank you for taking the time to reach out and tell us about your experiences while working for the EF South Africa Team. I am happy to hear that you enjoyed working with the other teachers from your center. We care deeply about protecting our teachers and we meet this need by following the rules and regulations in place by the South African Government. We take this seriously and we’d like to invite you to reach out to teacher.feedback@ef.com. Thanks again for reaching out.

  7. "Good for part time work"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Online English Teacher 

    I have been working at EF Education First part-time

    Pros

    Good option for part time teaching experience Good hourly rate

    Cons

    No real downsides, what you would expect from this type of employer

    EF Education First Response

    June 9, 2020Engagement and Retention Specialist

    Thanks so much for taking the time to reach out and share your experiences. We’re happy to hear that you are enjoying teaching with EF part-time, and that you find our hourly rate to be suitable for the work. Please be sure to let us know if there is anything we can do to improve your experience. Thanks again for your feedback.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Poor Management and Company Values"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Online English Teacher 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at EF Education First for more than a year

    Pros

    Flexible hours Amazing children Fair wage

    Cons

    Poor management No support Penalised for high retention rate Not allowed sick leave Holidays are advised against Poor values Poor work atmosphere No care for employees

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  9. "Read if interested"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Online English Teacher in Beijing, Beijing
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at EF Education First full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Chance to live in China Meet new people from around the world Experience a different lifestyle and culture

    Cons

    Don't get paid much, if you're looking to make money to bring back to the States you will really have to save Monthly pay is under $2000 USD which you can easily get by on in China but like I stated before, coming back to the US after you'd have to save alot BUT also I'd suggest going out and living the experience, who knows when you'll have the opportunity to live in China again!

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    EF Education First Response

    May 7, 2020Teacher Welfare Director

    Thank you for your review. We’re glad you were able to experience China and meet people from all over the world while working with us. In regards to salary, we do review our salaries on a regular basis to make sure we are competitive in the market but we will of course take this feedback onboard.

  10. Helpful (4)

    "poor salary"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Online English Teacher in Johannesburg, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at EF Education First full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Teaching students from all over the world.

    Cons

    The poor salary and inflexible schedule.

    EF Education First Response

    June 16, 2020Engagement and Retention Specialist

    We are happy that you decided to share your feedback with us. It’s great to see that you are enjoying working with students from all over the world. We are sorry that you aren’t happy with the scheduling in your center but Teacher schedules are created to meet the demands of students learning schedule. EF tries to make it’s wages competitive by offering a wide student audience and consistent work load to our teachers which creates a more a stable working environment. Thanks again for reaching out.

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