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Social Worker jobs: frequently asked questions
Welcome to our social worker jobs page, featuring all the latest roles throughout the UK as well as frequently asked questions below.
What is a social worker?
Social workers support people through challenging circumstances, focusing in particular on vulnerable individuals.
They direct those individuals to relevant specialist services, and help them to live independently or avoid harm and abuse.
You could be employed by a local authority, an NHS trust, a private organisation or a charity.
You can also work in a variety of settings, from hospitals and schools to public sector premises and people’s homes.
Typically, you’ll spend part of your time in an office, and the rest visiting your service users.
You will also often work as part of a wider, multi-disciplinary team, who you will work with closely to find solutions for users.
What daily responsibilities will you carry out as a social worker?
A social worker’s duties are numerous and vary according to the types of people you work with.
You might work with the elderly, young offenders, people with physical disabilities, the homeless, or various other groups.
However, your duties could include:
• Conducting interviews to assess people’s needs
• Writing assessments within specified standards
• Providing packages of support to help people live full lives
• Liaising with and making referrals to other agencies
• Working closely with employees from related disciplines including mental health or child protection professionals
• Maintaining accurate records
• Giving evidence in court Working hours for social workers are fairly standardised.
You can expect to work Monday to Friday, and around 37 hours a week.
What skills and qualifications do you need to become a social worker?
To become a social worker you will either need an undergraduate degree or postgraduate degree in social work.
Many people with nursing, legal, political or social sciences degrees choose to take a postgraduate social work course in order to qualify.
It is possible to combine work and study in order to qualify.
Certain agencies offer 2-year accelerated courses that mix work placements with academic study.
Bursaries are also sometimes available to aspiring social workers.
In terms of skills, most importantly you’ll need to be patient, resilient, calm under pressure and a brilliant communicator.
You’ll have to negotiate a huge range of very challenging situations on a daily basis, and that requires all of these skills in abundance.
How much do social workers earn?
The amount you’ll earn depends largely on whether you end up working within an NHS trust or elsewhere.
In the NHS, you’ll probably start on a Band 6 salary, which is currently £31,365 a year.
However, this is much higher than the average starting salary outside the NHS, which tends to be somewhere around the £22,000 a year mark.
According to industry statistics, the overall average wage is somewhere around £30,000 a year, but can easily rise to £40,000 and beyond with plenty of experience.
Find your next social worker job today
View our latest social worker jobs above, or if you can’t find what you’re looking for, create an account, register your CV, and we’ll send you the latest roles as soon as they come up.