Skills for Care

How data can help you think about your staff’s health and happiness

20 Jun 2022

5 min read

Skills for Care





We know that creating a #HappyHealthyWorkplace can support staff wellbeing, but how can you evaluate whether you’re creating a happy and healthy workplace?

Happiness isn’t the simplest thing to put a measurable metric on, but there are some measurements that can give you a reasonable indication as to whether your staff are happy at work. This includes information such as turnover rates, sickness levels, and staff satisfaction surveys.


Staff satisfaction

One of the best ways to evaluate how happy and healthy your workplace is currently, is to ask your staff. This can be done by running regular formal and anonymous staff satisfaction surveys.

Our research has found that two-thirds of employers with a high retention rate do this on a regular basis. This can highlight what you’re doing well and therefore should keep doing, and what improvements are needed. Issues for improvement that may come out of a staff satisfaction survey could include better communications, reward and recognition schemes, and supporting a better work-life balance.

Getting this insight directly from your employees is one of the best ways to find out how your staff feel.


Turnover rates

There are other less direct metrics you can look at to get an idea of staff happiness across your organisation. These metrics can’t be directly attributed to staff satisfaction and must be considered among a wider picture, but they can give you a good indication as to whether staff seem to be happy and satisfied in their roles.

A key measure to help is your turnover rate. A high turnover rate can be an indication that staff aren’t happy in their roles.

From our research we can estimate that the turnover rate of staff working in the adult social care sector was 28.5% in 2020/21. This equates to approximately 410,000 leavers in the previous 12 months.

Using our Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set (ASC-WDS) social care employers can benchmark their turnover rate against other similar organisations, which can help to give employers an idea as to whether their turnover rate is high or low.

There are things you can do to help to lower your turnover rate and improve staff satisfaction and retention. In our research with employers who have a turnover rate of less than 10%, key elements that they linked to their low turnover rates included investing in learning and development, embedding the values of the organisation, celebrating the achievements of both the organisation and the individual, and involving colleagues in decision-making.



Another metric which can help to give an indication of staff wellbeing is sickness rates.

This figure can also be monitored by employers using ASC-WDS.

The current sector average is 8.9 days per employee lost to sickness over 12 months, between 2020/21.

Of course sickness levels have been higher than normal in recent times as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and this should be considered when evaluating sickness levels.

Sickness levels aren’t only an indicator of your team’s physical health but can also give an indication of their mental wellbeing, with high sickness levels potentially being related to feelings of stress and anxiety, which could be linked to their work.

Our data shows that workers with high sickness rates are more likely to leave. In 2020/21 turnover rates were lowest for those with up to six days of sickness (26.0%) and highest for those with more than 30 days (31.6%). Evidence suggests that prioritising employees’ health and wellbeing improves their levels of engagement, and impacts their feelings about their job, their loyalty, and their performance.


How ASC-WDS can help you evaluate staff wellbeing

The benchmarking functionality available to care homes and domiciliary care services using ASC-WDS helps you keep track of workforce metrics which can indicate where there are areas for improvement. You can compare your turnover and sickness rates with similar care providers from your local area. You can also see how you measure up against providers with ‘Good’ and ‘Outstanding’ ratings and low turnover rates.

ASC-WDS also helps employers to support learning and development for their teams, which our research has shown is vital in supporting staff satisfaction and retention. ASC-WDS provides exclusive access to funding for training your staff via the Workforce Development Fund. Plus, ASC-WDS helps you manage your training and qualifications records for free, making it easier to keep on top of your staff’s learning and development needs.


Find out more about ASC-WDS and sign up.

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