More recruits: As part of his PhD study on the Social Care sector, John Barratt is keeping up to date with Social Care in the news. He will be providing commentary on what these issues mean for the sector and how they are relevant to the study.

Read the full story here.

“This article highlights the imperative need to start tackling the problems that the social care sector is facing. A 1.6 million increase in over 75s by 2022 means now is the time to act before it is too late. This increase in the elderly has the knock on effect of causing a heightened need in the number of care workers required. As shown in the article, Skills for Care projects the number required to be 1 million more by 2025. Without this increase the sector will fall apart. The article also highlights the increase in the number of under 14 year olds. This demonstrates how the stretch on the social care sector is set to continue.

The apprenticeship figures discussed are highly promising. Especially showing that social care has overtaken business in the number of apprentices. In the article the sector figures are quoted as 70,000 apprenticeships in social care in 2013/14, up 292% since 2009/10. This is highly encouraging, and is one way of promoting social care as a career to school leavers. An age group widely cited as being under represented in the sector. This is a hugely exciting time in social care, with the promotion and diversification of a workforce to meet both the demand and needs of service-users.

A hugely important aspect is highlighted in this article that must not be overlooked. There are 30 different apprenticeships available at 3 different entry levels. Furthermore there are 27 different job roles within social care (according to Skills for Care). This is a diverse sector with something to offer in the way of a career to most people. Therefore it needs pushing and showing as an option from an early age, to ensure it is considered a realistic possibility, not just an after thought.

One resounding problem in care recruitment, is how can we ensure the right quality candidates are becoming care workers? And how can we make sure the performance of those selected is consistently high? Moreover, how do we know they won’t just leave the sector within weeks of being trained? This is where the PhD project discussed within these blogs directly addresses and makes positive strides towards overcoming these hurdles.”

You can read more on the PhD study and how it will impact the sector here.

Written by John Barratt, PhD student at Aston University