Many professionals play a vital part in keeping children and vulnerable adults safe. Alongside police officers, doctors, teachers and nurses, social workers play a critical role in this responsibility. This is why finding, developing and retaining social workers with the right skills and experience is so essential.
Recently the Local Government Association, published a report, ‘Social Work: a toolkit for social workers and employers’, which provided advice on how best to recruit and retain social workers, how to engage local media and how to implement the refreshed Employer Standards. The report identified the key issues for social workers, and suggested solutions to the retention and recruitment challenges facing councils.
To build on the success of this report, the then PPMA President, Louise Tibbert, canvassed HR professionals across Local Government. We invited HR teams and senior stakeholders were invited from a number of local authorities to discuss what are the HR issues around social work and what ‘excellence’ looks like.
This paper summarises the discussions and provides practical tips and advice. Since then, I am pleased to say that a few regions have also adopted the Memoranda of Understanding which have incorporated aspects of this guide.