To accept the most jobs possible, it is helpful to understand how our system works. Below are a couple of reasons why some jobs go so quickly, as well as a list of ways to improve your chances at receiving those jobs.
Why do jobs go so quickly?
A couple of reasons of why these jobs can be gone within seconds:
1) You are most likely in a highly competitive district, meaning there are also a large amount of substitute teachers that are also checking for jobs at the same time as you.
2) Furthermore, our servers are only able to check for an available job every sixty seconds. In between that time, when the server is in between searches and a job comes up, someone else will be able to access it. So when the next sixty seconds come, the job will still show as available while that person in accepting it and when you try to accept it, it isn't available anymore. So it's helpful to understand that it's the nature of the sub systems that even in accepting jobs, you'll face some competition. However, our alerts still are giving you the opportunity to be alerted to more jobs more quickly than if you were relying on your computer alone.
What can I do about it?
1) Download Our SubSidekick App: To receive jobs as quickly as possible, we recommend using our SubSidekick App (which can be found in the App store for Apple or Android phones/tablets). This will allow you to receive alerts directly to your phone with push notifications and also give you an easy-to-use Available Jobs list, which is a live view of jobs as they come in and out of your sub-service's website. To learn how to start using our app, see our article: Downloading & Using Our App.
2) Manage Your Text-Settings: If you prefer to receive text messages instead of our app, that is a great option as well. You'll just want to make sure you set your text-setting to "Accept the Job Right Away" on the Alert tab of your Sub Sidekick settings. If you do this, when you click the link provided in text messages, Sub Sidekick will attempt to accept the job right away rather than prompt you first. This is good if you are confident you want the job. If you like to view more details first, then this isn't the best option. Again, there are possibly multiple other users trying to accept the job the same time as you are, so even in doing this, the job is still going to go to the user who happens to click the link first (which could simply be 1 second sooner than you).
3) Use Our 'Job Alerts Feature' On Your Computer: Anytime you have access to a computer nearby, the fastest method for getting alerts and accepting jobs is via the Job Alert window from the Sub Sidekick website. To access the window, login to your Sub Sidekick account at www.subsidekick.com and then click the 'Launch Job Alert' button. Turn up your computer volume and leave your computer on to get an audio alert when a job is available.
4) Be Available At Peak Times: Many times the easiest jobs to accept will occur in the middle of the night or early morning when teachers decide at the last minute that they need to be absent. In competitive districts it helps to check the systems (Aesop and Sub Sidekick if possible) late in the evening and early in the morning to give you a chance to accept jobs before others see their alerts.
5) Contact Your Schools: In highly competitive districts, there are dozens of substitute teachers actively searching for open jobs at any given time. Because of this, even attempting to ‘accept’ the job immediately does not guarantee you will receive the job, which you've seen. A long-term strategy to help with this is to get on a ‘preferred-substitute-list’ for a school, which will result in personal calls to you directly from the school.