An independent recruitment company’s new specialist training division, set up to meet the growing needs of the healthcare sector and a skills shortage, is now a fast-growing part of the business.
Chippenham-based 24-7 Staffing created its healthcare division in September 2014, because of rising demand for care home staff.
Faced with a problem recruiting fully qualified staff to fill the vacancies, 24-7 Staffing set up its own division to facilitate training, and now places staff in up to 40 different care homes across Wiltshire and South Gloucestershire.
24-7 Staffing’s Chippenham headquarters, and its branches in Yate and Amesbury, have seen a huge upturn in demand for care home staff and are managing to fill the majority of vacancies thanks to the new training investment. The recruitment company funds the training, and has so far supported different healthcare workers through 481 mandatory, refresher and specialist subject training certificates. The healthcare division and has filled 12,544 hours’ worth of care support for clients from one office alone in the last six months.
“We set up our healthcare division because of the demand for better qualified care workers, and we fund the training ourselves,” said Julian Thompson, Managing Director of 24-7 Staffing. “It has had a massive impact on our business in just a year, and we’re also really delighted to be working in a sector where our candidates are providing such a desperately needed service to vulnerable people in care homes. As a company, we’ve taken on three specially trained consultants ourselves to run the division, who have expertise in the healthcare sector.”
The majority of vacancies being filled are temporary, as care homes in the area struggle to cover the workload. Julian said: “The demand for the service is high, and although we can fill most of the demand we can’t fulfil it all, so we know there is scope for continued company investment in the future.”
24-7 Staffing’s training follows the requirements of the new Care Certificate, which came into force in April and is an identified set of standards that health and social care workers adhere to. Their training covers standards including safeguarding, health and safety, infection control, and moving and handling. The company has also provided training in epilepsy care, and dementia care. All candidates placed will already have had some experience in the care sector, but 24-7 Staffing will facilitate training to top-up their skills, and also ensure they remain up-to-date with their training.
Helen Harvey, a mentor and trainer with The Recruitment and Employment Confederation, of which 24-7 Staffing is a member, assessed the company’s new healthcare division. She said: “They have a clear understanding of the sector, an experienced team in place, robust systems, and a passion for delivering a top quality service. I believe they will make a real difference to the lives of the people they provide their healthcare workers to.”