September 15, 2022

Solutions to the staff retention challenges highlighted in latest Skills for Care report

Care worker

Skills for Care has published a new report which shows that the number of vacant posts in social care increased by 55,000 (52%) over the last year and currently stands at 165,000. In addition, the sector has faced a 36% reduction in the number of registered nurses over a ten-year period. It also forecasts that due to an ageing population, an additional 480,000 posts (27%) will be required by 2035.

These alarming figures follow a recent Skills for Care report, The state of the adult social care sector and workforce in England, which found that in the year 2020/21, average staff turnover rates were 28.5%, with rates for care workers increasing to 34.4%. Of those leaving their role, 63% remain in the sector and 37% (152,000) leave.

In the past it has been relatively easy to fill vacancies created by high turnover, but that is no longer the case due to a reduced available workforce caused by Brexit, the pandemic and increased demand for workers from other sectors. Providers now need innovative and strategic recruitment plans, with many also now applying for sponsorship licences to recruit from overseas, but in many cases, this still isn’t enough to plug the gaps.

Your focus should therefore be on your staff retention strategy with a view to reducing turnover rates and the need to recruit more staff. If you can stop staff leaving through the back door, you won’t need so many coming through the front door.

People Manager Training

The specialist HR and employment lawyers in our Health & Social Care team have extensive experience in supporting care leaders, managers, and HR teams with people management issues in a fair, proactive and supportive way to reach a quick resolution. We have drawn on this experience to create practical and interactive people management training to help you improve staff retention.

We can train your HR team and/or managers on how to deal with the HR issues most commonly impacting staff retention, including:

  • Creating a high-performance culture and effective performance management
  • Managing wellbeing and sickness absence
  • Handling whistleblowing and safeguarding allegations
  • Improving workplace equality, diversity, and inclusion
  • Avoiding menopause related attrition
  • Conflict management: investigating disciplinaries and grievances


Managing workforce issues can be overwhelming, especially when you are struggling with recruitment and retention challenges. Through our fixed fee employment advice service, HELP, we can support you by providing practical, commercial and robust employment law advice to help achieve your objectives, improve workforce engagement, free up management time and minimise legal risks.

With HELP you get proactive employment law and HR advice, bespoke employment documentation, compliant contracts and policies, as well as regular legal updates. You also have access to our Employment Resource Centre, which provides a wealth of tools to deal with day-to-day HR matters.

We provide a personal and friendly service, with a dedicated Relationship Manager, so that you always know who to call, and have peace of mind knowing that they know you and understand your business. In turn, we can provide tailored sector specific advice, to help you create a positive, caring and a highly engaged workforce, and thereby avoiding unnecessary staff attrition.

health and social care

Get in touch

For more information please get in touch with James Sage on 01225 730231 or at [email protected].

Our Social Care team

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