10 Questions To Ask If You Seek Veterinary Jobs In The UK

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Published: 17th January 2011
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Here are 10 frequently asked questions concering Locum Veterinary Surgeons seeking Veterinary Employment in the UK

You will generally be invited to attend an interview with your potential practice manager or veterinary surgeon, or the veterinary employment agency you use might simply pass on your details to the practice seeking a locum. Either way, you should ask these questions before taking the temporary position because you are not obliged to accept every job offered to you.

1. Where is the Practice Situated? Where is the work and what type of veterinary practice is it. Is it a large town or city practice or a rural one? The former two will likely be more focused on small animals and pets, while a rural veterinary practice will likely deal with outlying farms and even specialist equine work. If you have a preference between the various forms of veterinary practices then it is important that you understand the type of work that will be expected of you.

2. Accommodation Status Once you know where the practice is situated, ask about accommodation: is it supplied for veterinary locums? Is it supplied for locum veterinary nurses as well as locum veterinary surgeons? If it is supplied, what do you have to pay? If you are lucky a practice might have a room for you basically free of charge except for your power consumption, although most will charge you rental. However, ask the questions and if living in the practice accommodation is mandatory make sure it's OK for the price charged. Do you need your own bedding, for example? Is there a TV and is the kitchen fully fitted?

3. Discuss you contract details - Make sure you are given a written contract when you are employed by a veterinary practice as a locum. Be absolutely certain of your monthly salary, how it is paid and whether tax is deducted or you have to send in your own Income Tax Declaration

4. Professional Indemnity Insurance Find out about the professional indemnity insurance: veterinary locums need that just as much as any other vet. The majority of clinics will not cover you in their practice indemnity policy so you will likely have to organize your own. However - ask!

5. Practice Transport Transport could be an issue if you don't have your own car. Many overseas veterinary locums are in this situation, and a vehicle is essential for a rural practice. A UK driving license might be a condition of employment, so check that as well - after 6 months you have to have a UK license in any case, so take steps to convert it.

6. Transport Allowance You should discuss this with your potential employer. Most practices are flexible in their negotiations, in particular if the locum vet is expected to travel between branch surgeries

7. Working 'On Call' Will you be on call? If so, on what days and during which hours? Who takes the calls, the veterinary surgeon on call or the veterinary nurse? Is there a rota? Make sure that you get your after-hours or 'overtime' fees agreed with your employer.

8. Further education benefit Are your next congress fees pait for? Can you negotiate an allowance for it? This is essential for both veterinary surgeons and nurses. CPD involves keeping up to date with the latest surgical techniques, and maintaining and improving your skills and knowledge so that you can maintain a high standard of professional service to your clients and to the animals you are treating. A vet should carry out at least 105 hours CPD over a period of three years: averaging 35 hours each year in a recognized college or training institution.

9. Mandatory Dress Code? Does the practice insist on a uniform? Is it provided? Is there an expected dress code when visiting clients?

10. You Conform - Not Them! Finally, remember that you are likely joining an established veterinary practice with their own procedures and ways of doing things. It is for you to conform to the practice rules, not them to yours. If you have asked the above questions during your interview and the answers are not to your liking, don't make your feelings known - just refuse the job

Learn for any negative feedback. Remenber, any feedback is helpful, even if you take it as criticism in the beginning


For more information on how to secure your next Vet Locum Job or to advertise a veterinary job vacancy [alphaimpact.com] contact Alpha Impact Locums

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