Social care survey warns of workforce exodus


One in three social care workers plan to leave the sector in the next five years, according to research.

The research by Totaljobs in partnership with Care UK revealed a fifth of carers were already seeking roles outside social care, even though there are 110,000 vacancies in the sector.

Alexandra Sydney, Director at Totaljobs, said: “Totaljobs has seen a growing interest in social care roles, with applications up 13% compared to August 2018. However, our research highlights that there is more to be done to protect a sector in demand.”

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Of those looking to leave the sector, more than half (51%) said they were considering a move to healthcare, 43% to retail and 24% to hospitality. One in five of respondents said they intended to leave the sector within the next two years, with more than half (57%) planning to leave within the next ten years.

The expected exodus is set against a background of an ageing population that means the UK will need 650,000 more workers by 2035. The shortfall is being exacerbated by a lack of interest from younger people with 56% of 16-25 year olds saying they would not consider a career in the sector. Over half of 16-25 year olds said teachers, parents or friends had not spoken to them about a career in care.

Despite the challenges facing the sector, eight in 10 carers said they were proud of their career and two-thirds would recommend others to take a social care role, nearly seven out of 10 (68%) would recommend a career in social care. Asked what was best about their roles, 60% said building relationships with those they care for and 58% said being able to give back to society.

When asked what could be done to enhance their careers, respondents outlined the following priorities: feeling more valued by their employer (59%); an increase in salary (51%); greater support from management (46%); strong leadership (42%); greater career progression (41%); more training and development opportunities (40%); more flexible working hours (37%); reduced stress (35%); job security and stability (31%); and funded qualification (28%).

While 90% of the wider public believe that social care was an essential role in society, two thirds of people (67%) said they would never consider a career in the sector, citing concerns over low pay (42%), emotionally challenging work (41%) and perceptions of unappealing work (29%).


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The author Lee Peart

1 Comment

  1. Unfortunately, Social Care is in Crisis and within the next few years there could be no Social Care to speak of.

    This Governments austerity measures have drastically reduced the amount of funding being given to Local Authorities and this is seriously affecting the funding of Social Care.

    There is serious lack of funding for Social Care, which means care workers are not receiving a rate of pay which is in relation to the work they do and the responsibilities they need to undertake.

    Many, outside of London, earn less than £9.00 per hour, the Real Living Wage and most just earn the National Living Wage or just above of £8.21.

    This is unacceptable, when persons employed in Supermarkets could earn around £10–£12 per hour with considerably less responsibilities.

    This lack of staff within the profession is having a serious effect on the quality and quantity of care being delivered.

    Not only are care workers deserting the profession, but also some Care Providers are deciding to withdraw from the profession.

    The Government is continually delaying the, much needed, report on Social Care,

    This reducing of the effectiveness of Social Care is also impacting the quality of health care, by increasing the demand for health care.

    So, while the social care sector is reducing the demand for social care is continuing to increase.

    This is reflected in my petition – Solve the crisis in Social Care, please see!Aq2MsYduiazgmlI8wRtSGtPb92EO.

    Please sign and then share to show your support for Social Care in the UK.

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