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Adult Social Care

Working in adult social care is not just an emotionally rewarding role, it’s one of the most varied too. Working with a range of people with different care needs means every day is different. What’s more there are thousands of jobs available nationwide. So, if you are looking for a job to be proud of, now could be the perfect time to start your career in adult social care.

Types of roles

There are lots of different job roles in adult social care; it just depends what you’re interested in, who you want to work with and where you want to work. You can work in a variety of settings, including in a residential care home, in someone else’s home or even your own home, supporting people as a Shared Lives carer.

Care at home – supporting people in their own homes

Anyone at any stage of life could need care and support while living at home and in their community. This includes people with learning disabilities, mental health conditions, sensory impairment or physical disabilities and older people.

Residential care – supporting people living in nursing/care homes

Residential care can often (but not always) involve working with people with health conditions such as dementia and other complex needs that make it difficult for them to live independently in their own home.

Shared Lives schemes – opening your life to include someone who needs care and support

Shared Lives carers open their home and family life to include someone who needs care and support. It could be for a day, a short break, or to live with you as part of your family over the long term.

Find out more on the adult social care website.

Benefits of working in Adult Social Care

  • Adult social care is one of the few sectors where jobs are increasing, offering significant numbers of long-term career opportunities.
  • With thousands of jobs available nationwide, there are lots of great reasons to become an adult social care worker right now.
  • The opportunity to make a difference to people’s lives and help your local community.
  • Ongoing career progression, training and learning new transferable skills.
  • Long-term employment prospects and opportunities, with flexibility.
Doctor working in front of laptop holding stethoscope

Desirable skills

You don’t need previous experience or qualifications to get started. If you’re passionate about helping others, you’ve already got the qualities it takes and there’s training for everything else. For many employers a person’s attitude and ability to be empathetic are important factors, and there are often opportunities to enter care settings without direct experience in the sector.

For many jobs, you don’t need any formal qualifications. However, there are some great options for free online learning which could give your applications the edge. This includes a level 2 qualification in Adult Social Care available for free through the Open University (opens in a new tab).


Many employers in this sector are members of the Disability Confident scheme. This means that they have committed to actions that will provide work related opportunities for people with a disability or physical or mental health condition. You can search for a job with a Disability Confident employer on Find a Job.

Access to Work can pay towards the costs for communication support at a job interview and may be able to provide ongoing practical or mental health support when you get a job. To find out if you are eligible check the latest guidance.

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