The launch of a new recruitment platform is set to revolutionise the way workers are recruited for key social care roles. The online platform is a joint venture between the UK government and a care recruitment portal and is called Join Social Care. Candidates interested in working in this field can register with the site, upload all of their information into the system and even upload a video interview which can be accessed by potential employees. The platform is also supported by Skills for Care and allows carers to access free training online to increase their chances of landing a job quickly.
Benefits for Employers
Employers wishing to employ new workers in the social care sector must first register with Join Social Care as an employer. Once registered and approved, they can then scan through candidates in their local area and watch video interviews before making job offers. After a candidate accepts a job offer, the employer can start the DBS checking process right away or direct the candidate towards more online training.
The benefits of this style of recruitment during a coronavirus epidemic are clear as all recruitment can be done remotely, without employer and candidate ever meeting in person. However, even without the pandemic to take into account, being able to quickly filter candidates and draw up a shortlist based on online interviews cuts recruitment time significantly. Currently, the DBS is fast-tracking all DBS criminal records checks for people working either in the NHS or in adult social care. This means that employers can get a yes/no answer as to whether someone appears on the Barred Lists within 48 hours. Coupled with the new recruitment portal, these new measures are aimed at addressing the recruitment issues in the sector and getting people into jobs far more quickly.
The benefits of signing up for the portal aren’t just skewed towards the employer. From a candidate’s point of view, it is much less time-consuming to create one online profile which can be seen by potentially hundreds of employers than to apply separately to every care home or agency. The portal will also conduct basic pre-employment checks such as identity verification and Right to Work checks, so candidates won’t have to repeat the checks with each employer.
One of the main benefits however is training. At present, this is usually all done when a candidate starts work. The new portal allows candidates to undertake training in infection control, safeguarding, first aid and other topics from home, even before a firm job offer has been made. So, when an employer contacts them about a job, they are ready to start work almost immediately.
Even before the coronavirus pandemic, the care sector struggled to recruit the people needed to look after the elderly and disabled in care homes, or their own homes. Work is often seen as physical, poorly paid and less desirable than shop or catering work. Perhaps the new portal will go some way to changing these perceptions.