Train to Gain hinders social care skills, warns HR chief

The government risks “stifling” the social care sector with the way its flagship Train to Gain service is structured, an HR chief has warned.

Moira Brown, HR director at independent care services provider Care South, said the free brokerage service excluded care workers from learning essential team leadership skills because it only provided funding for employees to gain their first Level 2 qualification.

Most care workers already have a Level 2 qualification in the practical elements of care services, Brown said, but this does not always cover management skills.

“I [need] funding for people to do a Level 2 in team leading, even though they have a Level 2 in health and social care,” she told Personnel Today.

“Please can the government allow them to do that, and not stifle social care. We haven’t got a big enough pot to spend on all those people.”

Brown said that better team leadership would result in a reduction in the high levels of staff turnover blighting the sector. Currently, the social care staff turnover rate is 19.3%, compared to the public sector average of 13.7%.

A spokeswoman for the Social Care Institute for Excellence, funded by the Department of Health, said there was a range of guidance available for care workers to pick up management skills. A social care academy currently under development should also help to provide training for the care workforce, she added.

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