CIPD Voice: Issue 33
The Government’s social care White Paper, finally published late last year, was widely criticised for failing to give enough weight to the workforce aspects. Put bluntly, too much on how to pay for care and not enough on who will do it.
Even the Government evidence paper couldn’t ignore the issues: large numbers of unfilled vacancies in the sector and high rates of staff turnover. This has consequences for the quality of care provided. According to Skills for Care, care providers with high staff turnover also have lower ratings for quality of care. However, population ageing means the demand for social care – and those to provide it – is likely to increase over time. If the sector fails to attract and retain recruits, debates about who pays, and how much, risk being academic.
The quality of work is central to recruitment and retention. Happily, CIPD has a tool – the Good Work Index (GWI) – capable of providing a rounded perspective on quality of work issues. By combining data from four years’ surveys, we can drill down and compare the quality of work of front-line care workers against that of all employees.
The chart below provides an overview based on average GWI scores. It shows there are two dimensions of job quality where care work compares particularly unfavourably with other jobs – employment contracts and pay and benefits.
Mark Beatson, Chief Economist
Mark's role includes leading the CIPD’s respected labour market analysis and commentary, while also strengthening the CIPD’s ability to lead thinking and influence policy making across the whole spectrum of people management and workplace issues.
Prior to joining the CIPD, Mark was an economic consultant and for over 20 years worked as an economist in the Civil Service, latterly at Chief Economist/Director level, in a range of Government departments including the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS), the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and HM Treasury.