Ellie Ames 25 July 2023

Workforce concerns raised in social care survey

Workforce concerns raised in social care survey  image
Image: Lipa23 / Shutterstock.com.

More evidence of workforce concerns in the children's social care sector has been brought to light in a new survey, in which around 20% of council-employed social workers said they planned to work for an agency in future.

The Big Listen project involved a survey of local authority social workers, agency workers and social work students in London and the southeast of England.

Almost 40% of respondents said they found their workload unmanageable.

The project also highlighted the ‘distinct and more negative’ experience of local authority social workers from ethnic minorities, who said they were impacted by racism and discrimination.

These workers were also more likely to cite the cost of living as a major concern and to be considering leaving their posts to work for agencies.

Jacquie Burke and Beverley Hendricks, joint strategic leads of the Association of London Directors of Children’s Services leadership in colour programme, said: ‘We have to address the structural inequalities in our workplaces that lead to black and global majority workers choosing agency over local authority employers.’

The research was carried out by the London Innovation and Improvement Alliance and the South East Sector Led Improvement Programme.

Among its positive findings, almost nine in 10 (88%) of respondents said they felt they could make a difference to children, and two thirds said they felt valued in their roles.

Mac Heath, workforce policy lead for the southeast region, said it was encouraging that many local authority employees felt positive about their role.

Mr Heath added: ‘However, there are key messages that we must listen to. We are committed to working together as councils at local, regional, and national levels to help retain and recruit the high-quality people we need.

Cllr Ian Edwards, London Councils’ executive member for Children & Young People, said: ‘The Big Listen has provided us with vital insight. Carrying out the research across the two regions has undoubtedly brought many benefits and presents a good model for future cooperation.

‘We’re grateful to all those who shared their views as part of the Big Listen. Now we’re determined to show that those views have been heard as we develop our workforce strategy.’

Ending the ‘care cliff’ image

Ending the ‘care cliff’

Katharine Sacks-Jones, CEO of Become, explains what local authorities can do to prevent young people leaving care from experiencing the ‘care cliff'.
The new Centre for Young Lives image

The new Centre for Young Lives

Anne Longfield CBE, the chair of the Commission on Young Lives, discusses the launch of the Centre for Young Lives this month.
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Social Care Placements Programme Lead

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£43,434 - £52,632

Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Recovery Worker Substance Misuse

Essex County Council
£30931 - £35362 per annum + + 26 Days Leave & Defined Benefit Pension
Recovery Worker Substance MisusePermanent, Full Time£30,931 to £35,362 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Principal Transport Officer

Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation
£63,112 per annum
leading the capital’s largest new regeneration project. Brent Civic Centre (32 Engineers Way, Wembley, HA9 0FJ).
Recuriter: Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation

Senior Occupational Therapist

Essex County Council
£43477 - £52302 per annum + Flexible Working, Hybrid, CPD, Gov Pension
The role will be responsible for supporting adults to develop their abilities to enable them to live as independently as possible. This may include England, Essex, Harlow
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Director of Commissioning and Performance

Northumberland County Council
£100,157 - £109,081
We are looking for an individual to help us achieve excellence in adult social care in Northumberland. Northumberland County Council, Morpeth, United Kingdom
Recuriter: Northumberland County Council
Linkedin Banner

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.