We all know that there are some careers that people want to do for the money and others that are seen as a vocation or even a calling. Working in the care sector is, without doubt, the latter: no one goes into social care for the money. It takes a particular set of values to dedicate your career to caring for others, and those that have them speak of the joy their work brings.
“Getting into social work is the best decision I ever made” – Emileo Adesina, Social Worker
Whilst this is widely known amongst those involved in recruiting for the sector, the approach to values-based hiring isn’t really capitalised on as much as it should be...
What is values-based recruitment
A values-based approach to recruitment and retention is about finding the right people who exhibit the values and behaviours that align with the organisation’s core values and ethos. Skills can always be taught, but personal attributes such as compassion, kindness, honesty, and reliability cannot.
According to Skills for Care, people recruited through a values-based approach have better outcomes in terms of absence, punctuality, and skills required for the role. The care staff recruited through a values-based approach are typically seen as more compassionate, respectful, and empathetic. There’s also evidence to suggest that a values-based approach can help to reduce staff turnover.
Values-based recruitment is not about hiring people with 'empathy' – it’s about identifying your own organisational values and then recruiting people who share those same values, whether that’s treating people with dignity, acting with integrity, or team spirit. Consider the three top reasons that attract people to social care work:
- knowing the job makes a difference
- gaining satisfaction from caring for others
- being proud to work in the sector.
The importance of values-based hiring in the social care sector
The purpose of values-based recruitment is that organisations that adopt this approach have lower staff turnover rates and therefore save on recruitment costs in the long term. This is particularly important in the social care sector where staff retention is a significant challenge with high staff turnover and vacancy rates.
It’s important for both care organisations and care workers that the core values of both parties align. It results in improved quality of care, people who are well-suited to their role (and happier in it), and a cohesive team who share the same outlook. This results in reduced workplace conflicts, lower rates of absence, and reduced staff turnover.
Does your site support your recruitment efforts?
“I have developed a passion for care, I don't think I would do any other job.” - Hawa Mustapha, Registered Care Manager
Even if you get the campaign narrative and content spot on, there’s still a huge rock in the road. Too often, all the good work done by the campaign is undone when users arrive at the recruiting platform. Unfortunately, this is often a council-owned website designed with a very different user journey in mind.
Unsurprisingly, a website primarily created to give residents service information cannot provide an environment suitable for carrying the powerful emotive and narrative-based content required to attract values-based job applications.
Social care recruitment microsite
There is, however, a solution: create a stand-alone social care microsite. We’ve been designing social care microsite platforms with a number of councils recently and really see the opportunity to tell the great stories of people working in care, and the amazing difference they’re making to lives every day.
The microsite helps users self-select the roles which are right for them, informing and reinforcing the values as they move through the platform. There are a number of other practical reasons to consider this route:
- the site can be designed with the same branding as the campaign, so users arriving at the site have a seamless experience and know they’re in the right place
- you can create a wider range of content than would be possible on a council page. Want three videos and a form on a page? Not a problem
- many of your roles are with providers rather than the council directly, so it avoids confusion about who the employer might be
- your recruiting pool may extend beyond your council boundaries and you wish to encourage applications from non-residents
- you may be competing for potential staff with providers who already have well-developed, effective platforms
- you’re able to quickly amend content and pages without ‘raising a ticket’ with an IT helpdesk
- you can add tracking pixels and measure page performance to gather information on how your site and digital marketing is working.
Talk to us
Whatever the reason, the end result is a high number of applications from the right people for the right reasons. If you’d like to know more about adult social care microsites or video content, and how they can improve your recruitment conversion rates, join our Campaign Hub or email Jon Lilley.