Build your career in care

Adult social care offers an excitingly wide range of career pathways. By being willing to learn and challenge yourself, you can be rewarded with opportunities to progress in your career. Employers are frequently seeking new skills and adapting their ways of working to meet the changing needs of the ageing population.

(Please note, the content on this webpage derives from Skills for Care’s ‘Step up in your career’ document).

What could my career pathway look like?

You can either progress your career by moving upwards into roles with greater levels of responsibility or you can move sideways into different kinds of working environments.

Below are some examples of the career steps you could make:

  • You may begin your career as a care assistant in a residential care home. After gaining valuable experience, you could decide to specialise in an aspect of care such as organising activities for residents and move upwards, by becoming an Activities Coordinator should the opportunity arise
  • Instead, you may prefer to move from the role of care assistant into a new kind of working environment by becoming a home care assistant, where you can use your care home experience to support people in their own home. If you would like to specialise within an area of homecare, you may be able to undertake additional qualifications or training to help you to care for people with other conditions, such as learning disabilities or Alzheimer’s
  • You could use your transferrable skills acquired from other sectors, such as healthcare, to get into the adult social care sector, or otherwise use your experience of working in adult social care to get into the healthcare sector

How do I progress in my career?

There are many ways in which you can acquire the skills and the knowledge to progress your career journey. These include:

  • Undertaking vocational qualifications, such as a Level 2 and Level 3 Diploma in Health and Social Care
  • Doing a health and social care apprenticeship
  • Undertaking new training in areas you would like to progress in, such as autism, mental health, dementia, etc.
  • Taking on additional responsibilities and opportunities that may be asked of you

Please note that your employer may decide to pay for the qualification or training you undertake. Your employer may also be part of the Skills for Care Workforce Development Fund to enable them to fund the training. Otherwise, you may decide to pay for yourself.

You can find more information about the many ways you can build your career in care.

Mandy's career progression story

Please note, this video was created by the South East Social Care Alliance (SESCA), and we thank them for putting it together.