Everyone working in social care needs English, number, digital and employability skills including team work and problem solving skills. What core skills do I need to work in social care outlines some of the skills you need and has short activities to help you think about transferable skills from your previous experiences.
There are also some specific skills needed to work in this role. These include:
- some awareness of the issues faced by people who need care and support such as older or disabled people
- good communication skills
- being reliable and trustworthy
- being able to cope under pressure or in an emergency
- good organisational skills and knowledge of the local area.
You don’t necessarily need any qualifications to become a driver but you’ll need a full driving license and possibly a category D licence depending on the vehicle you’re driving. You’ll need to be 17 years old to drive smaller minibuses and cars and at least 21 to have a category D licence to drive vehicles with more than 9 seats.
It might be useful to have previous experience in a similar role, or in a social care and health setting.
It’s also really important that you have the right values and behaviours to work in social care.
If you’re interested in working as a driver, there’s lots of advice about finding a role on the Starting your career page. You could look online or in your local newspaper to find vacancies, or you might want to contact local care providers to ask them directly.
When you start in your role you should do an induction which includes training necessary for your role such as health and safety and moving and handling training. You might also receive specific social care training such as autism awareness, communication skills or working with people with dementia.
When in your role you could do additional training such as an advanced driver qualification or bus, coach and minibus PCV driver training courses. There are also BTEC driver training qualifications to help you progress into more senior roles.
Your employer might pay for you to do these qualifications, or you could apply for an Advanced Learner Loan to pay for them yourself.
There may be opportunities to progress into more senior driver roles such as a community transport operations manager, or you might choose to go into other social care roles such as a care worker, senior care worker, rehabilitation worker or a personal assistant. Read more on the Job roles in social care page.