Workforce Development Fund 2019-20

The Workforce Development Fund (WDF) for 2019-20 is funding from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) disseminated by Skills for Care. It supports the provision of high quality care and the continuing professional development (CPD) of staff across the adult social care sector by providing a contribution towards the costs of vocational learning. 

The fund allows you to claim back money towards the costs of workers completing a broad range of adult social care qualifications and learning programmes.

Key sector priorities for the WDF 2019-20

In 2019-20 the WDF will respond to key sector priorities including:

  • Additional support to new managers, existing managers, deputies and aspiring managers. Investing in managers represents an investment in their services, their staff and the quality of care they provide. Enhanced funding will be available for completion of leadership and management qualifications and learning programmes. New CPD programmes will be developed and made available during the funding year.
  • Enhanced funding per learner for completion of the adult care worker and lead adult care worker apprenticeship standards.

Further information is available in the application guidance for large national organisations or for employer-led partnerships.

What can be funded?

View the list of funded qualifications and learning programmes

When can I apply?

Applications are now open for large national organisations and lead organisations of employer-led partnerships. The deadline for completed applications is 13:00 on Friday 5 April 2019. Tendering is being undertaken subject to confirmation of funding from the DHSC.

Who can apply?

  • Large national organisations can apply for a grant to support the CPD of their own workforce.
  • Lead organisations of local or national employer-led partnerships within England, can apply for a grant to disburse funding to existing and new members of their partnership.

A large national organisation is defined as an individual organisation that has more than 1,000 care providing employees and provides adult social care services to a substantial number of people, operating in two or more of Skills for Care defined areas. The areas are Eastern, London and the South East, Midlands, North West, South West and Yorkshire and Humber and the North East.

Organisations accessing funding must meet the Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set (ASC-WDS) requirements for WDF. Please read this first to check that you're eligible to apply. 

The eligibility has no impact on the competitive tender as organisations can meet the ASC-WDS requirements during the course of the year.

How does the process work?

If your application is successful, you'll enter into a grant agreement with Skills for Care to support the learning and development of your workforce. Grants will be awarded during June-July 2019.

Grants contain four milestones which must be met. The claims process flowchart provides further information.

How to apply

  1. Read the application form guidance to ensure you meet the criteria.
  2. Complete the large national organisation application form.
  3. Submit the application form to wdf@skillsforcare.org.uk by 13:00 on Friday 5 April 2019.

Late applications will not be accepted.

We define a partnership as being a collection of adult social care employers, which may include micro employers, who come together to ‘pool’ their workforce development needs and potentially commission training to collectively meet those needs.

It's important to read the partnership requirements which set out the criteria that we expect grant holders and their respective partnerships to exercise when disbursing the WDF. 

Organisations applying for funding through an employer-led partnership must meet the Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set (ASC-WDS) requirements for WDF.

These requirements have no impact on the competitive tender as organisations can meet the ASC-WDS requirements during the course of the year. 

We will make a grant award to the lead organisation for the partnership who is then responsible for disbursal of the fund to their members, and for supporting those members to comply with our eligibility and evidence requirements. 

Lead partners must ensure that as far as practically possible partnerships are open to all employers within the adult social care sector.

How does the process work?

If your application is successful, you will enter into a grant agreement with Skills for Care. Grants will be awarded during June-July 2019.

Grants contain four milestones which must be met. The claims process flowchart provides further information.

How to apply

  1. Read the application form guidance to ensure you meet the criteria.
  2. Complete the partnerships application form and the workforce plan.
  3. Submit the application form and the workforce plan to wdf@skillsforcare.org.uk by 13:00 on Friday 5 April 2019.

Late applications will not be accepted.