Skills for Care

Safeguarding adults means protecting a person’s right to live in safely, free from abuse and neglect.

As an adult social care employer, it’s important to understand your responsibilities around safeguarding and the standards you need to follow. Our Guide to adult safeguarding explains some of the key aspects of safeguarding in your workplace.

Everyone working in adult social care needs to understand how their role contributes to the safety of the people they support therefore they must have the right skills and knowledge to recognise and respond effectively to potential abuse or neglect.

The Care Act means that employers need to understand their safeguarding responsibilities, develop their workforce to reduce the risk of abuse or neglect to adults who need care and support and safeguard adults in a way that recognises their choice and control.


The standards and development

Learn how you can successfully meet the CQC standards for a safe service as well as learning how to increase learning and create development opportunities around safeguarding. 

We asked adult social care providers who have a good or outstanding CQC rating how they achieved this. Here’s some of the recommendations they made regarding adult safeguarding.

  • Involve people who need care and support in discussions about their safety. Understand what makes people feel safe and document this in their care plans.
  • Make sure there’s a culture of openness and staff are confident that any allegations made would be fully investigated to ensure people are protected.
  • Make sure safeguarding incidents are investigated in an open and transparent way and review safeguarding incidents collectively to track any trends.
  • Document evidence of safeguarding incidents, including how they were dealt with, if any agencies were involved and any follow up action or learning. Some of the key records for adult safeguarding are risk assessments, care plans, observations, financial transactions, complaints, medication, rosters and logs and training and supervision notes.
  • Make sure staff and people who need care and support know how to ‘blow the whistle’ on poor practice without recrimination.
  • Make sure the registered manager is in regular contact with their local safeguarding team.
  • Share your knowledge and experience of adult safeguarding through local groups, networks or member organisations.
  • Make sure everyone knows what to do if they suspect someone is being abused or neglected. You could:
    • display a safeguarding adults policy as well as a clear and up-to date whistle blowing policy for staff, people who need care and support and visitors
    • include information about safeguarding in your marketing materials, website and customer welcome pack.

Find out more about you can acheive a CQC Good and Outstanding rating.

A big part of your safeguarding responsibilities is making sure your workforce, including any volunteers and non-care staff, have the right skills and knowledge to recognise actual or potential abuse or neglect.
You can do this by:
  • Including safeguarding in induction.
  • Regularly checking staff understanding and practice.
  • Having a safeguarding champion, whose role is to be a specialist in this area, researching best practice and providing staff with advice and support.
  • Regularly including safeguarding discussions in staff supervision and team meeting – you could collect and share case studies or practice stories to show how staff should respond in different scenarios.
  • Being open about your approach to safeguarding with people using your services and their families.
  • Commissioning high quality training:
    • ensure that learning providers understand safeguarding from an adult social care perspective, and in the context of your service
    • understand how the training meets the requirements of people who use your service
    • work with learning providers who’ll share knowledge across your whole organisation rather than limiting it to a computer screen.

We can help you to find high quality learning providers. Skills for Care Endorsement finds and badges learning providers who we see as the best. Our endorsed providers deliver high quality learning and development to the social care sector.

Search for endorsed providers in our online directory



This guide explains the role of the Safeguarding Adults Board chair, including the functions of the role, the knowledge and skills needed and how chairs can develop their knowledge and skills.

Useful links