In this week's edition - find out how to improve your service, access money for staff development, information about our bookshop sale and more.
Is this email not displaying correctly?
View it in your browser.

 Improve your 
 service in 2019 

This month we're giving employers ideas on how to improve the quality of their service for both their employees and the people who use their services.
We'll be sharing ideas, recent findings and resources that can help employers take stock of where they are now, where they want to be and how they can improve over the coming year.
You’ll find all of this information on our website and social media using #2019caregoals


Limited time left to sign up to access money for staff development
If you’d like to apply for money from this year’s Workforce Development Fund (WDF), you must submit your declaration form by Thursday 28 February. Employers can claim money from the WDF towards the costs of employees completing adult social care qualifications and learning programmes between 1 January 2018 and 31 March 2019. There are two ways to access the fund: Take a look at the funded qualifications and learning programmes that can be claimed for. Once signed up you have until 29 March 2019 to claim the funding.
Find out more and apply.

Accolades judging day
The judges have gathered to consider the worthy finalists for this year’s Accolades awards. Competition is fierce and there are so many inspiring stories of great care. We wish everyone the best of luck and look forward to the red carpet event at the end of January where the winners will be announced. See all the finalists on our website.
We’d like to thank all of our sponsors who help to make the Accolades happen.

Our bookshop January sale is now on
It’s important that managers and care workers are equipped with the right knowledge and skills to deliver quality care and support. This January, selected publications are available at a discount to help support your service.
This includes the ‘Good and outstanding care’ guide, which shows the key characteristics that differentiate CQC ratings and shares recommendations and best practice under each area of inspection.
Don’t miss out – find this publication and more on the Skills for Care Bookshop.

Supporting young apprentices
Apprenticeships are a valuable investment to any organisation. They can upskill and develop the quality of your existing staff or provide the opportunity to recruit new workers with the right values into your organisation.
Young apprentices might require more support during their apprenticeship. The National Apprenticeship Service have recently published a guide for employers which includes advice on how to provide effective support for apprentices aged 16 to 24, examples of on-the-job support and information on sources of additional funding.
Download the ‘Supporting young apprentices guide’.

Robotics in social care
The Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology has produced a briefing introducing robotic technology and the main ways it has been developed for use in social care. It reviews evidence on the impact of robotics on the costs and quality of social care and its workforce, and explores the main ethical, social and regulatory challenges to its use in social care.
Skills for Care Project Manager Diane Buddery contributed to this following our work scoping the emerging use of artificial intelligence and robotics in social care.
 Blogs and articles 

Eight ways to improve your service in 2019
Now is a great time to take stock of where you are and plan for the year ahead, so we've come up with eight great ideas that could help you improve your service.

We have to keep doing new things
Belinda Siggers is registered manager at Diligent Care Services and a member of Skills for Care. In this blog, she reflects on 2018 and shares her ambitions for 2019.


Getting started with values and behaviours-based recruitment and retention
Tuesday 29 January – Liverpool
Tuesday 29 January – Black Country
Wednesday 30 January – Lancaster
More dates and locations

Learn how to get started with values and behaviours-based recruitment and how this proven approach can lower your staff turnover, provide higher quality care and bring a positive return on investment.
Come along to our half day workshop and find out:
  • what workplace values are
  • the benefits of establishing workplace values
  • working with others to develop and agree workplace values
  • communicating your values.

Delegates who attend should be in a position to influence change in their workplace. This might include senior managers, human resources managers, registered managers and individual employers.

National recruitment campaign
Thursday 31 January 2019 – Preston
Tuesday 05 February 2019 – Taunton
Wednesday 06 February 2019 – Liverpool
Monday 18 February 2019 – Doncaster
Thursday 28 February 2019 – Durham
More dates and locations
The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) national recruitment campaign to help raise the profile of adult social care will run in early 2019. We’re hosting a series of events for employers on behalf of DHSC so you can find out what the campaign is, how to use the campaign materials and what you can get out of it to help with your recruitment challenges.
This is a series of events, with the same information given at each location.
 Other events
Supporting individual employers and PAs
Wednesday 16 January, Birmingham
Wednesday 23 January, Taunton
Tuesday 19 February, Doncaster
Wednesday 27 February, Durham
If you support people who employ their own personal assistants (PAs) using a direct payment, personal health budget or self-funded, come along to these free events. The events will share best practice and offer the opportunity to network with other people in the sector. Each event will be specific to your local area but may cover topics such as recruitment, the latest on ‘sleep in’s’ and learning and development.

Prevention and wellbeing in adult social care
Tuesday 22 January, Birmingham
Come to this free event and learn about how you can implement a preventative approach in your service, to improve the health and wellbeing of the people you support and your staff. We’ll share findings from national research and you’ll hear from other providers and projects about what they’ve done.
You’ll network and learn what others are doing locally, so you can start to think about practical ideas and projects that you can try in your own service. You’ll also have the opportunity to apply for a small grant to test different ways of working around prevention.

Skills for Care roadshows
Wednesday 30 January, Scunthorpe
More dates and locations
Come along to our interactive roadshow to find out about the practical support that we can offer on the topics that matter most to employers. The Scunthorpe roadshow will be focussing on: funding and qualification changes to support workforce development, leading a good or outstanding care organisation and how to effectively use information to enhance service quality.

Eastern learning disability and autism network
Thursday 31 January 2019, Cambridge
If you work for a service that supports people with learning disability and/or autistic people in the Eastern region, come to this network. It’ll focus on some of the issues that this workforce is facing, and you’ll hear from Skills for Care, NHS England and other providers about what makes a good learning disability provider and commissioner. It’s suitable for people who are in a position to make changes in their service, such as registered managers and commissioners.


To be good or outstanding, you need to be ‘well-led’
It’s not too late to book onto one of our popular Well-led programmes starting in the next few weeks.
  • Our Well-led programme focuses on learning how to apply best practice that delivers a well-led service and starts on 16 January in Leeds. Recent attendee Tamara Brown, Registered Service Manager, said: “I personally feel that all managers should attend this programme, as it will develop their own personal skills to look at their job role, encourage identified skills within the team, and build on these together.”
  • Our brand new Well-led Advanced programme is all about developing leadership skills and starts on 20 February in London. Read about Lancashire County Council who recently commissioned this and the Well-led programme for their registered managers.

 Get involved 

New T Levels
A consultation on the content of the new T Levels, including two for Health and Healthcare Science, has been launched by the Institute for Apprenticeships (IfA). There will not be a T Level for adult social care.
The IfA state: “T Levels are new high quality two-year, technical study programmes that will be available across 11 industry routes. Alongside apprenticeships and A levels, T Levels will be one of the three major options available to people aged 16-19 years old.” Read more about the new T Levels.
The consultation is open until 17 January. Take part here.

Final call for evidence about the role of social care in prevention
We’re working with research company, Wavehill Ltd., to explore the role of social care in the prevention agenda. Please send any research publications and/or examples of good practice to Andy Parkinson (Wavehill Ltd.) at, by Friday 18 January 2019.
If you’re interested or involved in work around prevention and wellbeing in adult social care, come to this free event in Birmingham on Tuesday 22 January 2019. We’ll share findings from national research and you’ll have the chance to network and learn about what others are doing locally, and where you could get involved. We’ll also explain how you can apply for a small grant opportunity to test different ways of working around this agenda.

Flu fighter awards
Each year the flu fighter team at NHS Employers host the national flu fighter awards which recognises and celebrates the great achievements of flu fighters across the country. There are seven categories, including Best Care Campaign, and flu teams across the social care sector are invited to submit a nomination. All final nominees will be invited to attend the awards with a chance to win and gain national recognition for their invaluable work in the fight against flu.
The closing date for nomination submissions is Monday 21 January 2019.

Skills for Care Ltd, West Gate, Grace Street, Leeds LS1 2RP
Registered company no.3866683. Registered in England
Registered charity no. 1079836. Group VAT no. 135 5383 15