What is Skills for Care?

Skills for Care provides invaluable support and resources to organisations operating within the ever-changing social care sector.

This organisation doesn’t just play a supporting role; it is a driver of change, actively involved in developing and implementing crucial strategies. These strategies help shape workforce development and training within the social care sector, elevating industry standards and ensuring employees and service users reap the benefits.

But what exactly is Skills for Care, and how does it contribute to the quality of training and level of care delivered within the social care sector?

In this article, we will learn more about Skills for Care, its impact on the social care landscape, and how its work helps assure quality training and improved care services.


What is Skills for Care?

Skills for Care is a UK-based independent charity that supports social care employers in delivering compassionate and safe Care.

Its role doesn’t stop there. It’s also at the forefront of workforce development in England’s social care sector. Skills for Care helps create and implement strategies that shape and transform how care workers are trained and developed. This critical work is carried out in partnership with the Department of Health and Social Care, making Skills for Care an essential part of the care provision sector in England.

But perhaps the most important aspect of Skills for Care is its unwavering commitment to those who work tirelessly in the social care sector. Through various programs, resources, and initiatives, Skills for Care supports, empowers, and uplifts social care professionals, helping them to provide the highest quality of care possible.

In essence, Skills for Care is more than just an organisation – it’s a champion of the social care workforce, fostering a robust, skilled, and resilient set of professionals capable of meeting the challenges and rewards of providing quality care.


About Skills for Care

Skills for Care has been an integral force driving the evolution of adult social care in England since its establishment in 2001. Its primary goal? To work with employers, government bodies, and other relevant partners to ensure a competent, well-supported, and resilient social care workforce.


Skills for Care mission, vision, and values

The Skills for Care website states that its vision is “a fair and just society where people can access the advice, care and support they need to live life to the fullest.” Its mission is “to support and empower current and future social care leaders, employers and the wider workforce.”

The heart and soul of Skills for Care, however, is embodied in its core values, which are neatly summed up with the acronym IMPACT:

  • Inclusive
  • Motivated
  • Passionate
  • Ambitious
  • Collaborative
  • Trustworthy


The value of collaboration is central to Skills for Care’s ethos. It effectively taps into a broad spectrum of expertise by uniting with various partners, enhancing its influence on the sector. Some of its key partners include trade organisations, care associations, charities, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) and the Local Government Association (LGA)


Skills for Care’s strategic priorities

Skills for Care uses four strategic priorities to help achieve its mission and drive forward reform in the social care sector. These strategic priorities are:

  • Supporting workforce capabilities
  • Supporting culture and diversity
  • Increasing workforce capacity
  • Improving the social care system


Skills for Care’s dedicated work, shared vision, and collaboration with partners lay a solid foundation for driving change and ensuring quality care within the social care sector.


What does Skills for Care do?

So, how does Skills for Care translate its mission into action?

At the core of its operations, Skills for Care actively engages with social care providers and other partners within the local health and care systems to share guidance, foster peer support, and champion the sector. Identifying opportunities for collaboration, developing leadership within the system, and ensuring robust social care representation, all help to create a productive and progressive environment.


Establishing strong networks with partners.

Establishing and nurturing strong networks with partners is another essential aspect of Skills for Care’s work. It collaborates with other social care leaders to formulate a national workforce strategy that addresses the sector’s unique challenges.

Skills for Care also works hand-in-hand with the Local Government Association and the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services to identify key priorities for the social care workforce.


Contributes to Health Education England’s Strategic Framework Review

Skills for Care’s collaborative input is also crucial in contributing to Health Education England’s Strategic Framework review, promoting an integrated approach to health and social care workforce planning.


Provides funding for workforce training

Recognising the pivotal role of continuous learning, Skills for Care funds adult social care employers to reduce the cost of learning and development.

Different types of funding available include:


Provides support and guidance for leaders and management

Employers can register to become members of the Skills for Care community for just £35/year.

Skills for Care provide dedicated support, guidance, resources, and valuable insights for registered managers to improve recruitment strategies, build capabilities, and help organisations to deliver high-quality care services.

Support and information is available in a variety of formats, including:

  • Webinars
  • Podcasts
  • Whatsapp and Facebook groups
  • Local and specialism-based networks
  • Monthly newsletters

Skills for Care also arms registered managers with a suite of tools and resources to help them to attract and retain the right employees, including access to workshops and seminars.


Workforce development

The development of the workforce is crucial to the quality of Care an organisation provides.

Skills for Care provides employers with comprehensive guidance about workforce development; one of their notable resources is ‘Learn from Others’, which offers over 100 case studies on various topics and free training materials.

Skills for Care jointly developed the Care Certificate, an agreed set of standards defining the knowledge, skills, and behaviours expected of specific job roles in the health and social care sectors.

It also maintains a directory of endorsed social care training providers, allowing employers to identify effective, high-quality training courses.


Quality and inspection

Skills for Care also aids social care employers striving to meet Care Quality Commission Standards. Whether an organisation aims to meet a Good or Outstanding rating, Skills for Care offers practical guidance and recommendations to help it prepare for inspections and meet the CQC Standards.

Quality and inspection services provided by Skills for Care include:

  • CQC inspection toolkit
  • Online resources
  • eLearning
  • Workshops and seminars


Skills for Care endorse Care Business Associate Training

The Skills for Care endorsement is a trusted quality mark. It is awarded to the health and social care sector’s best learning and development providers.

The endorsement was developed by Health Education England (HEE), Skills for Health, and Skills for Care, as part of a rigorous quality assurance system for training to ensure that money is not wasted on inefficient courses.

Skills for Care states, “to become endorsed, you must be able to clearly evidence that the training delivered makes a significant difference, not only to the learner but also to the person accessing care and support.”

Here at CBAT, we underwent a rigorous endorsement process to become endorsed for our high-quality health and social care training services. We are proud to be formally endorsed by Skills for Care and to feature on their endorsed provider directory.