Health and Social Care offer the widest range of career opportunities in the NHS. We have a very diverse workforce - people from all walks of life who have very different skill sets.
There are many frontline roles for learners to consider, which involve delivering care to patients and families, and there are also scientific roles, media specialists, accountants and more. Whatever job they choose, all Health and Social Care staff are committed to delivering the best possible service to people. If that’s something learners are passionate about, then there’s a role for them.
If learners are eager to start their career, they can find out what’s currently being advertised and think about starting some applications.
NHS Jobs is the official online recruitment service for jobs in the NHS. Learners can quickly find current vacancies they’re interested in using relevant keywords and their location, and find advice for jobseekers.
As well as the keyword search and location finder, NHS Jobs allows learners to search for jobs based on a number of other factors: minimum and maximum salary, what date the job was posted, whether it’s a part or full time job and more. They can try a different combination of filters to find exactly what they’re looking for.
Learners can add vacancies to their ‘job basket’ if they’re interested in more than one, and can also save applications and return to them later to complete them. Completed applications are saved and can be used to apply for other positions. Learners need to ensure they read the job description for each role and tailor their application profile for the new vacancy.
Another key feature of the NHS Jobs website is the ability to set up email notifications following job searches. Learners can save their job searches and request to be notified by email as soon as a vacancy appears.
If learners are new to the NHS Jobs site then this handy guide will help them to understand how the site works. Our applications look different to other employers’, so this will walk them through the key features.
If learners have a role in mind, they can head to the Health Careers and Skills For Care websites to find out what they need to do in order to complete a successful application. Many roles involve training or securing a qualification, though not every one, and Health Careers is split into clear sections explaining what is required. Each vacancy on NHS Jobs will have a section on essential skills and experience.
Looking into Health and Social Care careers can be daunting for learners, as there is so much information available. It’s important they research thoroughly, as committing to one career path is a big decision. Signposting them to useful information is always helpful.
If learners know what qualifications they need for the career they want, they should head to the Health Careers website and use their handy course finder tool to see where their training providers are. Once they’ve found a provider, they can look into the entry criteria for the course. Learners can also contact providers directly if they have any questions, such as whether they qualify or what financial options are available.
There are a wide range of Health and Social Care roles to choose from and learners can narrow them down based on their skills, experience and what they think they’ll enjoy.
There are lots of ways they can find out what the jobs are and which ones interest them. We’ve added some useful pointers below to help:
Step into the NHS is an interactive website that provides a great introduction to the careers available in Health and Social Care. Learners can try the ‘Map Your Career’ activity, which is a great way to start finding out what career is right for them.
Greater Manchester staff tell their career stories in their own words, including what their roles entail and why they love what they do.
The Health Careers website has a huge amount of useful information relating to jobs available in Health and Social Care. This is a valuable resource for learners to find out more about different roles and what their next steps might be.
Careers events are the best way for learners to meet staff from various industries to talk about their options face-to-face. The events happen regularly throughout the region and most are free to attend.
While the resources are really helpful to learners for finding out what their options are, once they’ve found a job they’re interested in they’ll have to do some research. They’ll need to find out what training is involved and whether they need any work experience before applying.
Applying for jobs in Health and Social Care is different to most other employers’ application processes, so there are some specific things learners will want to consider when making an application:
The job description lays out what the roles and responsibilities will be as well as working conditions such as pay rate and normal hours. It may also involve useful information about the department; where it sits in the organisation and any key initiatives or projects they’re involved in. This can be very useful background information for their application and interview.
The personal specification sets out what the essential and desirable criteria are for the vacancy. This is important information, as it tells learners what experience and skills are necessary for the role. Learners will need to demonstrate they are capable of meeting these requirements in their application in order to secure an interview.
When applying, learners need to let the employer know why they’re the best person for the job and how they meet the criteria. After they complete the ‘supporting information’ section, this is their opportunity to impress employers by detailing the relevant skills and experience they have.
Learners will need to find out about an employer prior to making an application, and especially before an interview. They should find out what services the organisation provides, what their values are and what their key projects or initiatives are. Learners should also mention what they can bring to these projects or examples of where they’ve shown the same values in their application or at the interview.
Sometimes applications or interviews are unsuccessful, but that shouldn’t stop anyone from trying again. Instead, they should use it as a learning opportunity, and ask for feedback from the person or people who made the decision. Knowing why they weren’t successful can help them to make changes to future applications, get more relevant experience or even decide on a different career path.