Recruiter In Korea

The Honest Truth About Recruiting in Korea

Even honest recruiters make mistakes…

with 11 comments

After all, we’re human too.  I’ve always touted that myself and the agency that I work for do our best to upkeep our reputation as honest, straightforward, trustworthy recruiters with our adamant refusal to work with dishonest employers.  You also know (if you read my other posts) that I absolutely hate recruiters that will sell their own sisters to make a fee.  Those guys don’t last too long.  Me?  I’ve been doing this for more than 4 years now.

However, in trying to maintain our reputation, we sometimes make mistakes too.  Granted, most of these are unintentional (I say ‘most’ because no one is perfect right?) but from the outside looking in (applicants) it could very well look like we’re trying to pull a fast one.  I misplaced a candidate’s documents once.  They actually fell between my desk and my co-workers’.  I spent days looking for it with no luck.  Fortunately, the candidate wanted to delay his arrival.  He was actually not angry about the situation but indeed it was my bad.  I ended up reimbursing him $40 (not too bad for a replacement dipoma) and then found the diploma about a month later.

Another time, I mixed up 2 people with the exact same first and last name who were to arrive around the same time.  Long story short, I ended up giving the wrong guy the contract that was suppose to go to the other guy.  Wasn’t too happy about the situation.

I am a perfectionist but sometimes flubs like these happen.  Thanks to those candidates who understand that we make mistakes too.  For the ones that got super pissed at me, well can’t really blame you (I would too in some situations!).  Luckily, nothing too big where visas got messed up or schools ended up canceling contracts due to recruiter error.

Knock on wood~


Written by recruiterinkorea

January 18, 2010 at 4:08 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

11 Responses

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  1. Considering the almost certain reality that you have 4, three foot stacks of paperwork on your desktop and a bottle of Lithium Sulfate in your top drawer, a “slip up” here and there is par for the course.

    For most of us poor souls trying to make a difference in “teaching” English in Korea, you’re a breath of fresh air and a sigh of relief when trying to come to terms and understanding just what is going on in this country. You have helped me out a few times, and it’s more than just appreciated. Whether I stay and continue to suffer or leave and still suffer, Thanks for your input.



    January 18, 2010 at 7:54 pm

    • Hey, did you ever come in my office and look at my desk? Your description plus a large bottle of pepto bismal is spot on! More depressing (and real) stories to come! Thanks.


      January 18, 2010 at 8:30 pm

  2. Are you my recruiter too? ;)(You sound like him too.) Don’t believe everything you see or hear. Although, I find delicious satisfaction knowing that the recruiter that tried placing me in Seoul, is still trying to get me to go to the school I didn’t want to go to. And from what I hear, they are not to satisfied with the current teacher. Not everyone needs or wants the big city lights of Seoul or Pusan. My school is trying and succeeding in getting me to stay a second year.

    I do have some suggestiosn for articles though; additional training that you can do in Korea that make you more deisrable. Not all Tefl course are equal. This site I find is very good.

    And another is skills you can acquire that will translate into a job back home.

    Also, you need a mailinator email account to give you the schools that we know are bad schools. In one year I personally helped three teachers with their hakwons scummy behaviour. One teacher was owed 8 million won.


    January 19, 2010 at 5:53 am

    • I absolutely recommend getting an English teaching certificate before you come or while you’re in Korea (if you’re on to the next gig). Check out my post here.

      Honestly, schools don’t really give a rat’s ass what the certificate is but it does help spruce up a resume, even a little.


      January 19, 2010 at 5:55 pm

  3. Sorry brother, I need your help again. I know, You can start charging me if you like. Question: My ARC card ends on the 19th of Feb. My contract ends on the 25th of Feb and my visa has no expiration date, just a stated window for me to enter this country. I am assuming that the contract is directly tied to the E2 visa, so the visa expires on feb 25th? Is this correct? Also, By law, which date trumps the other. The ARC expiration date or the contracts expiration date? From which date does the 30 day grace period for exiting the country start? Is their a difference between the public and private school rules? These questions pertain to the public sector. Also, do you know of an updated reference for these laws/rules?

    Thanks again and again and again……


    January 19, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    • If the ARC expiration date expires after the contract end date, you need to get an extension. The contract means nothing when you leave the country as customs will just look at your ARC.

      This happens to most E-2 instructors and it’s a very simple solution. You just need to tell your boss to visit the local immigration office to get an extension (this could be a week, month, etc). Actually he should already know this but remind him.

      From the new extended expiration date, you have 30 days to exit the country. It’s a very ‘soft’ law however, if you’re past a couple of days then I wouldn’t worry too much about it, unless the customs officer is a dick.

      Your ARC should be valid when you are still working meaning don’t use the 30 days grace period when your ARC runs out; get the extension.

      I’ll try to find a file with all the E-2 extension provisions and post something.

      Again, no problem~


      January 19, 2010 at 5:52 pm

  4. Did you mean,” If the ARC card expires BEFORE the contract end date, you need to get an extension”.

    Question: Can you be denied an extension on your ARC card for any reason? Is it against the law to have an expired ARC card prior to your contract’s end date.

    Also, housing? Can you be asked to leave prior to your contract’s end date?

    Again THANKS, I feel some shady “Nunchi” going on right now with my current situation. Somethings not right!!


    January 20, 2010 at 3:17 am

    • Yes, if the ARC expires before you finish your contract, you need to get an extension. You will not be denied (not that I know of anyways; never seen anyone get denied an extension). You should be provided housing until at least the end of your contract. Where does the school expect you to live when you teach?

      Tell us about your situation.


      January 20, 2010 at 9:41 am

  5. In a nutshell, the female VP does not like me, so in essence, I’m pretty much screwed. I asked my handler (primary co-teacher) to get me the answers to the following questions; When do I have to vacate the premisis? How do I empty my national pension? The ARC card expires on X, the contract on Y and there’s no exit date on my visa, just a “window” for entering S. Korea. Do I need to extend my ARC card. When will my flight reimbursement and contract completion settlement be deposited into my account?

    This was 4-5 days ago. She’s nowhere to be found. So I get a text message yesterday stating my name and telling me “Stay Period Expiration Date : 2010.02.19”.
    OK, where did this text message come from? King Sejong? Kim Jong Il? I assumed it was from immigration. But why did they just randomly text me this information without indentifying themselves? I caught the head of the English dept. spying on my winter camp class yesterday like a little girl. “Bagged” her red-handed!! Thoroughly enjoyed that moment!! Why is she sneaking around like a pre-teen school girl? Who knows. I gave up trying to comprehend what’s going on in this country.

    There’s something going on around me, that pertains to me. I have no idea waht it is, but I know it’s there. I realize I may sound like a paraniod sociopath by stating this, but I’m not. Atleast I hope i’m not!! I just want to make sure I understand exactly what needs to be done in regard to the issues I have asked you about. I just don’t want anything coming back to haunt me. I see enough ghosts as it is.

    Again, thanks for your input Mr. Recruiter. I’d send you a gallon of soju in appreciation, but your a phantom of the highest caliber.


    January 20, 2010 at 2:56 pm

  6. […] one must understand that even honest recruiters encounter shortfalls like the one mentioned above.  We’re people after all.  It goes to show the agency’s […]

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