Skills for Care

Using succession planning to promote careers in social care

16 Mar 2020

Dani Noquet

  • Recruitment
  • Workforce planning

During February and March we’ve been focusing on workforce planning. In this blog, we hear from Registered Manager Member of Skills for Care, Dani Noquet, who tells us how Reach Learning Disability Care CIC’s recent focus on succession planning is creating a greater awareness of career progression within their organisation.

I’ve been working within the adult social care sector for over three decades, progressing through various roles as a support worker, a team leader, onto training and development and now as a registered manager at Reach Learning Disability Care CIC. I know how it feels to progress through different roles, but from my experience, there remains a lack of clarity around career paths.

We need to ensure that we retain key skilled staff. As a smaller organisation, we often lose our most experienced staff members to other sectors, or they move to other care providers, who tend to be larger, with more structured tiers of management to progress into.

It became clear to us a few years ago that to retain staff, we needed to provide structured development opportunities centred around a clear succession plan. We know that if we get it right, it could help us to grow our business and lead to more people receiving high standards of care. We are still growing as an organisation, so our employment structure is changing regularly, making it a timely opportunity for us to develop and implement a succession plan unique to our organisation.

We are looking at the resources already available to help us. We have already found useful guidance from Skills for Care and we make sure we get as much support and advice from peers. I attend health and social care forums and I’ve been to several succession planning workshops put on by our local authority. It’s a great opportunity for me to share my ideas and learn from others.

We’re planning to develop a progression plan for the people we recruit, which we plan to use during recruitment and the induction process. We hope it will help new staff understand the roles available to them and their journey through our organisation. It’s going to include details of the necessary skills and qualifications needed to get them to their desired role. The ambition is that it will show that a career in care is an attractive career prospect.

As an organisation we’ve recognised that, whilst it isn’t always easy, we need to set aside a budget for investing in a succession planning structure. Not only will this help us demonstrate that a career in care is an attractive career prospect, it will mean that we are better placed to have a qualified and competent workforce now, and in the future, to deliver the high standards of care we are committed to.

We’re also learning that it’s important to demonstrate and role model the behaviours of career progression. One way that I do this is by making sure that I focus on my own development and CPD (Continuing Professional Development). My membership of Skills for Care is a vital element of this, as it helps me to keep up-to-date with best practice, new guidance and new legislation. It’s about leading by example and encouraging others to develop their skills and take control of their own development.

There’s lots that we’re planning to do, and I’m sure there’s plenty more we can be doing, but I am already more confident that we are approaching succession planning in a more organised and structured way. We’re actively looking at nurturing our existing staff, enabling them to understand the options available to them, and encouraging personal growth from within our own organisation.

Find out more

Take a look at ouronline guide around succession planning: ‘Developing new managers and deputies’ that includes a recommended pathway for developing managers and deputies here.

Find out more about Reach Learning Disability Care CIC here.

Follow our campaign

You can keep up-to-date with our workforce planning campaign here where we’ll add new information, links to useful articles, blogs and resources to help you over the next couple of months.

You can also follow the campaign on social media using #CareWorkforcePlanning

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