Evaluating our impact

We’re committed to evaluating the outcomes and impact of our work.

We’ve signed the NCVO Code of Good Impact Practice and are committed to evaluation that is credible because it is robust, independent, inclusive, transparent and planned. 

The adult social care sector in England requires an effective talent pipeline to deliver quality, safe and compassionate care. This evaluation of the seventh and eighth cohorts of Skills for Care’s national Graduate Management Programme found that all three targets set by the Department of Health and Social Care were met:

  • up to 15 high-calibre graduates recruited in cohort 7; 20 in cohort 8
  • at least 80% to complete the programme
  • a sustainable, financially secure and integrated programme.

Read the latest report

During 2017, Skills for Care supported three I Care…Ambassador partnership services to pilot an integrated model of I Care…Ambassadors. Following on from a positive pilot evaluation, Skills for Care decided to empower all services to become integrated, if they wished to.

This study sought to explore the extent to which this opportunity has been taken up by I Care…Ambassador services, what issues have been encountered, what outcomes achieved, and what lessons learned to date.

Read the full report

In 2019, Skills for Care commissioned an independent evaluation of the Workforce Development Fund, including Individual Employer funding and the Workforce Development Innovation Fund over the previous two years. Employers told the evaluators that they are providing better care, have a more skilled staff team and have improved staff morale as a direct consequence of the Workforce Development Fund.

A high proportion said that the mainstream fund is addressing the most pressing skills issues that they face. Large proportions of employers also spoke of productivity and efficiency improvements, while lead partners were confident that accessing good quality training through the Fund can have a positive impact on CQC ratings

For every £1 of the Workforce Development Fund invested in the social care sector across the two years, £7.51 was generated for the England economy.

Download the executive summary

The overall aim of the registered managers’ supported year pilot was to test a model of support for 65 new registered managers based on a combination of Skills for Care resources and guidance. It ran from April 2018 to April 2019. The evaluation found that participants improved their confidence, changed management skills, gained confidence in understanding and preparing for regulation, inspection and managing resources.

Read the summary report

This report presents the findings of an outcomes evaluation of five Skills for Care’s Leadership and Management programmes which ran between 2018 and 2019. The programmes examined were:

  • New Directors
  • Top Leaders
  • Moving Up
  • Well-led
  • Well-led Advanced.

By the end of the programmes, participants had made positive change in every aspect of leadership measured. There was a significant increase in the frequency of cross disciplinary working over the course of the programmes. Between the start and end of the programmes, the gap in self-assessment scores between participants from higher- and lower-rated settings, and participants of different gender, narrowed. Participants reported changes in their skills, abilities and confidence, and had begun to make changes to themselves, to the management of their teams and at a systems level.

Read the outcomes report

I Care…Ambassadors are people who work in social care and promote social care careers, to help people decide if it's the career for them.

In 2018/19, Skills for Care made a small amount of funding available to existing I Care…Ambassador services to improve the reach of the programme nationally, and to explore the use of I Care…Ambassadors in delivering workplace career opportunities, such as taster days, work experience, mentoring, buddying and work placements.

Four services were successful, delivering a different project aimed at developing the role of ambassadors in delivering in-work career opportunities, and each encountered different challenges and successes.

Key findings

  • Ambassador activity increased in all four projects.
  • All four projects said that the skills and confidence of ambassadors in delivering workplace career activities had increased.

Download a summary of the report

Independent evaluators ICF undertook an impact evaluation of Skills for Care’s activities over five years (between 2013/14 and 2017/18), exploring the question ‘What difference does Skills for Care make?’.

They found that during this period Skills for Care worked with 55% of care providing locations and progressed towards achieving its overall strategic vision. It delivered nearly three million products and resources to the sector and provided at least 670,000 learning and development interventions.

Employers and staff reported that Skills for Care improved the skills, knowledge and confidence of their workforce (from entry-level to senior leadership) and improved the quality of their care. 90% of those surveyed were likely to recommend Skills for Care services to peers and colleagues.

The evaluation assessed Skills for Care as economical, efficient, and effective, delivering good value for money for the adult social care sector. For every £1 invested, Skills for Care generated at least £2.27 to the England economy.

Download the impact evaluation executive summary

The aim of the Aspiring manager’s pilot was to address the lack of a defined route into becoming a registered manager, and the skills gap which exists between a care coordinator and this role and therefore the need to improve the recruitment, retention and quality of registered managers.  

There’s strong evidence that the pilot achieved its aims and objectives with participants having grown in leadership skills, in particular, and they were all much better prepared for the transition to the role of registered manager and were keen to continue to develop themselves personally and professionally.

Download the executive summary

More information about supporting aspiring managers can be found in our online guide ‘Developing new managers and deputies’.