Why use Equipeople?

Equipeople Ltd. was established by Caroline Lane in 1995.  Initially an employment agency for equine positions, Caroline quickly discovered the work experience market when in 2003 Equipeople Ltd. was contacted by an Austrian agency enquiring whether we could provide agricultural work experience for a group of 30 agricultural students.

Following its success, Equipeople Ltd. has been going from strength to strength with 650 students being registered in August for 2013.  Equipeople Ltd. has won numerous awards such as:

  • County Enterprise Award 2013 – Bronze Award
  • County Enterprise Award 2010 – Merit Awards
  • Internationally Traded Service Award 2009
  • County Enterprise Awards 2007 – Innovation Award
  • Offaly County Enterprise Board Finalist 2006

and is an active member of:

  • IAPA – International Au Pair Association
  • Grow Abroad – International Training
  • WYSE – Work Abroad
  • WYSE Travel Confederation – World Youth Student & Educational Travel
  • ISME – Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association.

The reasoning behind Equipeople’s achievements is down to the fact that the company is able to adapt to market conditions and customer needs.  Caroline Lane drives Equipeople Ltd. forward by continuously re-inventing and improving existing business whilst seeking out new venture opportunities on a continuous basis.

Equipeople Ltd. continues to offer Irish employees to Irish equine-related businesses; provides Irish students with an outbound programme to gain work experience in places such as the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand; offers agricultural students from across Europe work experience in farms and equine establishments on both long term and short term programmes; arranges Study Tours catered to individuals needs and now also offers Equipeople Au Pairs.

Equipeople Au Pairs is a new venture in the Equipeople group.  Previously having offered a similar placement to students in an Agro-Home and Home & Horse programme, the company is now branching out into the Au Pair market.

We offer a comprehensive service with full back-up from the moment you apply until an Au Pair leaves the country.  We take an active role in the entire process and all our members of staff are trained to handle any queries or issues you may have, so please contact us for more information.

 

What is Equipeople’s Role?

We are here to try and place the Au Pair with a host family best suited to her skills and personality whilst providing the family with a suitable person to help in the home and with the children.

Placement

We have a host base of over 400 host families who have all been visited by us in advance and who we feel are suitable to host an Au Pair. We look at the details provided by the applicant and try to link them with a host family. When we visit a host we have a look at the accommodation available and discuss in depth with the host what our Au Pairs require and what their motivation is for coming to Ireland. It is important to us that the host understands that the Au Pair is here to learn and is not cheap labour.

Second placements 

If an Au Pair is really not happy with their placement and is staying for longer than six weeks, we will attempt to place them with another family free of charge subject to availability. Sometimes you can have a great applicant and host but their personalities are not compatible, in this case, we will usually be able to place the student with a second family and in exceptional circumstances a third. However, we will not place anybody in a second work experience if the first placement does not work out because the person has taken drugs, stolen or behaved in a socially unacceptable way such as getting drunk.

Welcome packs

Upon arrival, Au Pairs receive a Welcome Pack from us. In the Welcome Pack we have information about Ireland and some of the many places to visit. It also contains material on tourist safety. We include some info on sightseeing tours that are available to young people. These trips are very popular with our applicants as they get to see some of Ireland, learn more about its culture and generally have a good time with people of their own age. Also in the Welcome Pack is a Contact List with the names, nationalities, location and phone numbers of all the other students we have in Ireland at that time.

Phone calls

Soon after the Au Pair’s arrival into Ireland we call them to make sure that both the Au Pair and the host are happy with the match. At this stage we are in a position to sort out any small teething problems between host and Au Pair to ensure that the placement works for both of them. Sometimes if there are minor issues we keep a note to call that person again in a couple of days or a week to see how things have moved on. Very often there are just settling in problems.

Site Visits

All Au Pairs staying at least three months receive a site visit from us. We do not guarantee a visit to Au pairs staying for shorter periods of time, but if we are in the area, we will do so. At the placement, we sit down and talk to the host and the Au Pair separately. We make sure that we have a chat in a closed room so that both parties feel free to speak their mind. We ask them both how they are getting on, if there are any problems or if there is anything that Equipeople can do for them.

If there are any problems we try to sort them out but if we can’t or we feel that the placement is not going to work out then we can offer them another work experience placement. We keep a detailed record of any discussions with both the host and Au Pair, firstly, so that we are building up a history of the host, and secondly, to ensure that we have a record of how the Au Pair felt about the placement at this time. One copy of this record is attached to the applicant’s file and one to the host’s file. Occasionally Au Pairs will receive two site visits from us, but that is usually only if they are here for a long stay.

Travel Arrangements

Equipeople organises the transport to and from the airport, but the Au Pair pays for it. Once we have the arrival details we will organise for the Au Pair to get to the host. Sometimes, the host will collect them at the airport, other times they will need to get a bus or a train. We will e-mail you these details which include exactly what to do and how much it is going to cost. We also include our contact details and the host’s contact details in the event of a problem.

Back up services

Equipeople is here to deal with any problems or queries that the Au Pair has. In the event of a serious problem or if we should feel that the Au Pair is not safe we will remove the girl from the placement and will arrange safe alternative accommodation until a new plan is organised.

Communication

The most important thing in the whole process is to communicate with us.  If we don’t know there is a problem – we cannot fix it.  There is no such thing as a silly question and we are all trained to deal with any issues that may arise, don’t be afraid to call or send us an e-mail.

To learn more about Equipeople and the Team, click here.