Students have limited opportunities for placements but recruiters always prioritise experience. Newly-qualified social workers need to think creatively
Ellen Bascote* has applied for more than 90 positions since she qualified as a social worker last summer, but doesn’t yet have a job.
“Every day I check job websites and get alerts,” she says. “I’ve been to one or two interviews but my lack of experience has counted against me.” Bascote has applied for jobs in both adult and children’s services, but finds that local authorities often want candidates who have completed the assessed and supported year in employment. “I’m having trouble even getting that,” she says.
It’s not unusual for social workers to struggle to land their first job. Employment rates usually depend on the state of the social care economy in certain areas. Where there are clusters of training courses, in London and the north-west of England for example, more graduates mean more competition for a limited number of jobs.
* Some names have been changed
Read the full article: Qualified but no experience: catch 22 locks social workers out of their first job