If you are a kind and caring person, it is likely working in adult social care will be a good fit for you.
If you are a bit nervous about changing career there are ways you can test the water.
Many care providers will offer shadow shifts where you will follow a trained member of staff while they work to give you an idea of what the role is like. You could also consider volunteering. Many services need volunteers to help with activities or offer companionship to service users. If this is something you would be interested in contact the Proud to Care team and we can put you in touch with local care providers.
Working in adult social care is one of the most rewarding careers you can have. You are doing a job that will have real impact and make a difference to people’s lives on a daily basis. You will not only be helping people maintain their physical health but also their emotional well-being. There is plenty of flexibility around working hours and types of care. You will learn new skills which are transferable and can lead to other roles within care or other sectors. The experience you will gain is invaluable. You will receive training and can work towards qualifications too.
If you work in adult social care, you could help people in their own homes, in residential homes or in a number of other places such as day centres or supported housing.
Personal care is usually required as part of the job and you really do get used to it. The degree of support offered will vary from person to person, support could be just a verbal prompt or they may require full support with washing and dressing. Helping someone to feel fresh and comfortable can be extremely rewarding and you will receive training and support in all aspects of the role to help you.
The hours can vary, most residential homes have shifts 8am – 2pm, 2pm-8pm or 8pm-8am. There are some homes which do shorter shifts or longer day shifts depending on their service users needs. Homes use both staff who have set hours and those who are ‘bank,’ meaning they are flexible and will arrange with the care home each week what shifts they are able to do. This offers a flexibility you do not get with many other jobs. If you are considering doing domiciliary care / residential care the hours can vary depending on the service users, some may just need support for an hour some may need full days.
If you work in domiciliary care you will often work alone once you are fully trained and confident – you will start shadowing another member of staff until you are ready. In residential homes you work as part of a team whose size will depend on the size of the home.
Pay can range depending on where you work and experience. Rates in care are very competitive and come with many other benefits such as training and gaining new skills, some homes even cover your meals while you are on shift. Most importantly helping and support people to live their lives is rewarding in itself.
Check our jobs page to get an idea of the rates available.
You don’t need any experience just a willingness to learn and commitment to helping others. Working in care is all about having the right values: kind, patient, caring and reliable. You will receive full training and support to enable you to confidently do your role, and you will be given the opportunity to shadow other staff members which will give you the chance to see how things are done and pick up best practice. Your life experience is invaluable and will count as much as work experience.
Yes, all care providers offer full training and you will shadow experienced staff too. You will be fully supported during your induction and ongoing. If you have life experience of looking after someone it’s easy to transfer these skills into working in care.
There are so many options available once you have experience in adult social care. Within the adult social care sector you can go up the ladder becoming a senior care assistant, team leader and then on to management. If you decided to you could use the transferable skills you have gained in care and apply them to other sectors such as Hospitals, GP Surgeries, Childcare, Day centres, Care Recruitment/Agencies, Pharmacies, Support or Personal Assistant work and many more. Care Assistant experience can also be great if you are looking to go into further education in the Medical or Health sectors.
You will need a DBS, this stands for Disclosure and Barring Service. This will list any cautions or convictions someone may have. You will need to declare any cautions or convictions but speak with the potential employer as decisions are considered based on the individual circumstances.
If you are able to get to the place of work by foot or reliable public transport then no you do not need your own transport. It is normally required for Domiciliary Care/Community Care as often the calls you make are not always close together.
No, you will receive all the training you need to do the role and if you opt to do an apprenticeship you can even gain qualifications while you work.
Bank/Temp work within the care sector is where you do not have set hours but work when it suits both you and the care provider. They will call you either once a week or every 2 weeks and ask what days you are available to work. If they have shifts available on those days, they will ask you to work.
There are many benefits of Bank/Temp work in care such as:
- Flexible working to fit around you
- Being able to work at specific times of the year to suit you e.g. over Xmas or school holidays
- Unlike agency you will be working with one care provider, helping you build rapport with the people you care for
- Great for earning extra money as and when you need it
The hours you will work will depend on when you are available and hours the care provider needs from you to support them.
Many people work on Bank/Temp basis and work for a few weeks as and when they need to. If you are hired as a bank/temp worker then as long as you have a conversation with the care provider about your availability and it meets their needs, this should not be an issue.
Bank/Temp work can lead to Full time or Part Time hours on a permanent basis. This depends on whether you are looking to increase and agree set hours, and based on the needs of the care provider. Many people stay on a Bank/Temp basis as they enjoy the flexibility.