Social Care recruitment in Oxford is feeling the strain. A BBC report on 19th October revealed that Oxford, (not London), is now the most expensive place to live in the country. The shortfall in affordable housing, combined with a social care workforce turnover rate of 27.7% (July 2015), means there is a constant struggle to recruit key care workers at the lower end of the scale, particularly those entering the workforce for the first time. However, the demand for adult social care among Oxfordshire communities is rising.
So what can be done to turn this potentially catastrophic situation around?
In recent months, the Oxfordshire Association of Care Providers (OACP) has reported an increase in members using their free vacancy advertising service. Now, as part of a joint initiative with Oxfordshire County Council, OACP has launched a vacancy matching service to help their members attract suitable candidates into their social care vacancies.
Social Care Recruitment – Advice for Candidates
The project: Think Care Oxfordshire, aims to raise awareness of job and career opportunities within adult social care, provide guidance and advice to potential candidates and work in conjunction with other agencies such as Job Centre Plus, so that appropriate candidate referrals may be made to the vacancy matching service.
Although this project is currently in its infancy, Think Care Oxfordshire has already ‘hit the ground running’ with its planned programme of events such as pop-up stalls in high-footfall locations, career fairs in Oxfordshire schools and colleges, scheduled ‘taster’ days and volunteering opportunities, so that potential candidates can gain valuable ‘real world’ experience of social care work. And it isn’t only first-time employment seekers the project is aiming to attract, but those considering a change of career also.
The latest Oxfordshire social care vacancies feature on the OACP website and you can also find highlights of OACP’s current activities on their brand new Facebook page.
Clearly this is a time of massive challenge facing everyone involved in social care and social care recruitment within Oxfordshire, and the team here at Orange and Blue wish OACP every success with their Think Care Oxfordshire project.