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Helping you find a career as a Social worker

Social workers support individuals and their families to ensure that vulnerable people (children and adults) are safeguarded from harm. Your role is to help improve the lives of others.

What does a Social worker do?
Tasks typically involve:
  • Leading interviews with individuals and families to assess and review their situation and its degree of risk.

  • Undertaking and writing up reports and assessments

  • Meeting deadlines

  • Offering information and support

  • Organising and managing packages of support

  • Recommending and making decisions about the best care treatment package for a particular individual or family

  • Liaising with other agencies

  • Participating in multidisciplinary teams and meetings about child protection or mental health

  • Maintaining accurate records and preparing reports for legal action

  • Giving evidence in court

  • Participating in training, supervision and team meetings
What skills and interests should an Social worker have?
  • Patience

  • The ability to remain calm in a crisis

  • Resilience

  • Flexibility to adapt to new roles, tasks and situations

  • Initiative

  • Strong observation and analytical skills

  • Great listening skills

  • The capacity to absorb legal information

  • Strong negotiating ability

  • Great organisational skills
What hours does a Social worker typically do?
Your typical working week will normally be around 37 hours, although this can significantly vary.
What environment is a Social worker based in?
You will mostly be based in an office, but with frequent visits to individuals in your care.
How much does a Social worker travel?
You will be required to travel to clients' homes.
How much does a Social worker get paid?
As a newly qualified social worker you can expect to earn up to £22,000 per year, but with further responsibilities and experience your salary can rise to around £40,000.

Social workers who work for the NHS typically start on Band 6 of the pay scale, which is £26,565 to £35,577.
What qualifications does a Social worker need?
You will need a degree that is approved by one of the four regulators for the industry:
  • Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) – England

  • Social Care Wales – Wales

  • Northern Ireland Social Care Council (NISCC) – NI

  • Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) – Scotland
Useful subjects to study at school & university
  • Legal studies

  • Politics

  • Government and public administration

  • Social care

  • Social sciences

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