Develop your career in adult social care

To start your career in adult social care all you need is the right values, rather than lots of qualifications. You can still then develop your skills with on-the-job training or formal education. And, if you want to progress to new roles, there are always opportunities to take on more responsibilities.

Qualities that people need to work in care

While every role requires core life skills like teamwork and problem solving, it's your values, behaviour and attitude that will set you apart. So if you're the sort of person who treats others with respect, listens to their needs, understands their emotions, and is warm, kind and honest, then adult social care could be the career for you.

Everyone working in adult social care needs a good standard of English, as well as numeracy and digital skills. You will need to be a self-starter, as well as being able to work as part of a team.

Additional skills required to work in adult social care include:

  • organisational skills
  • good listening and communication skills
  • the ability to understand and follow policies and procedures
  • good writing skills to fill in care plans
Care worker supports man doing a puzzle

What experiences and qualifications do I need?

You don't necessarily need any qualifications for many roles in adult social care. What's really important is that you're a kind, compassionate and thoughtful person. Your employer might ask that you have qualifications showing good English and numeracy skills such as GCSE A-C in English and Maths.

It might also be helpful to have a social care qualifications such as a Level 2 or 3 Diploma in Health and Social Care. Don't worry if you don't have these qualifications though - if you're interested, you can work towards them once you've started in the role.

Work experience and apprenticeships

If you're new to social care and want to find out if it's the right career for you, it might be useful to do some work experience or volunteering.

Your school, college or jobcentre might be able to help with this or you could contact organisations directly.

Alternatively, a social care apprenticeship is a great way for people of all ages to gain experience, achieve a qualification and earn a wage. Apprenticeships usually last between 12 and 24 months and are mainly work based - so you can develop your skills on the job.

There are different levels depending on your skills and experience. Read more about social care apprenticeships, including how to find one here.

How can I progress?

Everyone gets a full induction when they start, including any optional training relevant to your role (such as fire safety and first aid). Every role requires, life skills like teamwork and problem solving and you can develop these further whilst you work.

Care workers may also benefit from:

  • Informal training & education
  • Formal qualifications such as a Diploma in Health and Social Care (up to Level 5) or specialist subjects like dementia care, communication skills and team leading
  • Over 50 vocational qualifications at all levels including topics such as dementia care, communication skills and team leading
  • Opportunities to progress and develop in adult social care, and specialise in a certain area or take on more responsibility.



Search jobs

Results will be within 10 miles of your search location