There are a number of big challenges that face us all in relation to the future of the health and social care workforce in Essex that will require all partners to think and work differently. During 2016 we formed a group of representatives from across the council working to support providers on issues related to the workforce. These included representatives from:
- Contract Management and Quality
- The Employment and Skills Unit
- Economic Development
- Adult Community Learning.
They also held discussions with Skills for Care, the Colchester Institute, CQC and the Chair of the Essex Employment Skills Board, Care Sector Group. They developed an initial workforce strategy that set out an overall aim with three objectives:
- Making care work more attractive to new and existing care professionals, carers and volunteers:
- Objective 1: Recruitment and retention
- Objective 2: Well trained, developed and motivated workforce
- Objective 3: Workforce market and capacity.
During 2016-17, a number of work streams were taken forward:
- To align a greater number of social care employers to secondary schools in order to influence school senior leadership teams to ensure schools have robust employer engagement strategies
- Entrepreneurial training for return workers in the care sector
- Creating more apprenticeships
- Mentoring scheme
- Care manager management and leadership development programme
- Promotion of the care profession - the Gift of Care Campaign
- Recruitment fairs
- Quality initiatives (e.g. Prosper, My Home Life).
For 2017-18, some of these actions are to be continued, but a review of current priorities is underway, including engaging more closely with providers on what they require. We anticipate some of the priorities will be:
- Refining and developing the Gift of Care idea as a means of promoting the care profession to encourage more people to consider it as a career choice
- Helping providers recruit and retain staff
- Continuing to work with schools
- Continuing to build the leadership skills of care managers
- Stimulating new types of care providers
- Exploring opportunities to help providers access quality training more easily
- Working more closely with the Provider Care Sector Group to ensure the right priorities are being tackled.
- Thinking about long-term skill requirement for care workers.
Last Updated: 12 March 2018