Posted: 14 June 2021
Skills for Care and Care Friends are celebrating the first anniversary of the innovative Care Friends employee referral app which has generated over 16,000 candidates for employers, picked for their values by their care staff.
The Care Friends app was launched on 16 June 2020 in partnership with Skills for Care, and has already paid out £500,000 through its unique points system to care workers using the app.
The app works by allowing existing care workers to refer their friends and connections for job roles, including people not currently working in adult social care.
Underpinning Care Friends is a points system which rewards care workers for using the app. For every job shared and every person recommended via the app, users receive points, which then can be cashed in to payroll with every point equating to £1.
As well as supporting recruitment the app is also a great tool for employees to recognise and reward staff, with the option to provide employees with bonus points at any time to say thank you for their hard work, ensuring their staff feel valued, a key factor in retention for social care employees.
Users are highly-engaged with the app, with a total of 250,000 job shares having been generated by 20,000 care workers using the app over the past year.
The app’s most prolific user has recommended 16 of her friends for job roles, who now all work alongside her as care workers.
An impressive first year for the company has seen clients increase from the initial 40 pilot clients to 450, expanding their coverage to Ireland and Australia as well as the UK.
An important ethos behind Care Friends is values-based recruitment, with an emphasis on hiring the right people for social care based on their values rather than just their previous work experience.
Utilising the understanding and experience of those already working in the sector to source candidates through their own connections, allows these values to be at the forefront of candidate selection rather than exclusively hiring people already in the sector.
Neil Eastwood, CEO and Founder of Care Friends says:
It has never been more challenging to recruit in adult social care, so I am really pleased to see how the app has gathered momentum with both care workers and their employers in the 12 months since we launched.
The personal connections of our 1.5 million-strong workforce represent the last remaining untapped pool of new recruits big enough to help fill around 100,000 vacancies the sector has on any given day, and support the growth in demand for care.
I am really proud that the Care Friends app has the potential to connect these high quality future care workers with employers and recognise our care workers as great advocates for our sector.
Oonagh Smyth, CEO of Skills for Care says:
Values-based recruitment is something which we strongly support, and the Care Friends app really emphasises the importance of hiring people with the right values for social care as we look to find the right people who may be currently outside the sector.
We are thrilled to hear that over £500,000 has been paid out to care workers through the app so far, and this is a reward for workers who have worked incredibly hard over the last year which has been more challenging than ever.
You can find out more about Care Friends and how it could work for your organisation on their website.