New hiring toolkit to support care providers with ‘safer’ recruitment

A first-of-its-kind Better Hiring Toolkit has been launched – a guide for care sector employers to make informed and safer recruitment decisions.

Complied as a collaboration between safeguarding experts at the Better Hiring Institute, the Disclosure and Barring Service, Reed Screening, Skills for Care, Dominic Headley & Associates and VBA Consulting, the toolkit provides simplified guidance to support employers with both obtaining and providing effective references.

With social care staff providing support for some of the most vulnerable people in society, the toolkit is focused on the safety of the people employers are entrusted to care for and the staff who carry out their roles.

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Among the key ambitions of the toolkit are:

  • a desire to raise standards in the care sector
  • providing a one-stop shop for industry best practice
  • encouraging an increase in information sharing – including Barring referrals

A robust and safer approach to sharing effective references and conducting information is the earliest opportunity that organizations have to prevent those who may be unsuitable to work with vulnerable people from securing a role.

While sharing effective references and conducting information for staff working in social care settings has always been an essential part of safe and fair recruitment, many employers experience challenges in obtaining and providing them.

Some employers refuse to complete references, others provide insufficient information and sometimes, appropriate ‘evidence of conduct’ is not provided – a legal requirement made by the Care Quality Commission.

Those responsible for recruitment within care sector organizations are being urged to download and share the toolkit within the hiring community.

Jeanine Willoughby, Project Manager – Capacity and Transformation, for Skills for Care said: “This innovative partnership has produced a practical toolkit offering templates so employers can fulfill their duty of care, legal obligations and safeguarding responsibilities to make sure potential employees are suitable to work with people who draw on care and support.

“The toolkit offers a robust and safer approach offering guidance on how to share references and conduct information at the earliest opportunity to support a culture of safeguarding and vigilance.”

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