What is a support worker?

A Support Worker is someone who looks after the well-being of vulnerable people. They help people living with different disabilities such as mental health needs, learning disabilities, medical conditions or physical disabilities to live their lives more independently and support them to reach their potential by providing both physical and emotional support.

How to become a support worker

You’ll need a mix of accredited qualifications, practical skills, and personal qualities to become a support worker. There are no specific qualifications needed to be a support worker – beyond a good attitude and willingness to learn, which are essential – but experience in the care sector is definitely advantageous.

You may be able to improve your chances of getting a sales assistant job by:

  • Apprenticeship – You could get into this job through an adult care worker intermediate apprenticeship or lead adult care worker advanced apprenticeship
  • NVQs in Care – Employers might not require that you have the qualification when you apply, but you must demonstrate that you are working towards the certification. Getting an NVQ on the job is simple, and you usually get around a year to complete them
  • Diploma in Care
  • GCSEs
  • Care Certificate

Support Worker Duties

There are many roles and responsibilities of a support worker, including:

  • Compassion and empathy
  • Support and help with health care needs, including routine checks or administering medication
  • Encourage and support the development of personal skills through hobbies and interests
  • Ability to show initiative
  • Flexibility in work patterns and schedule
  • Ability to understand and be patient irrespective of provocation from patients being cared for or supported
  • Communicate frequently with the patients so as to be able to identify their needs and attend to them accordingly
  • Help clients participate in leisure activities
  • Help to administer basic care and ensuring that standards of hygiene are adhered to

Sales Assistant Skills

To be an effective sales assistant, you’ll need certain skills and competencies. The following are often cited in job vacancies:

  • Good listening skills
  • Excellent verbal communication skills
  • Good time management skills
  • Socially savvy
  • Strong organization and time management skills
  • Flexible and open to change
  • Ability to carry out practical and domestic duties
  • Interest in people and a commitment to helping others
  • Ability to understand people’s reactions
  • Counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgmental approach

How to find a support worker job

Support worker jobs are advertised online, in local newspapers and at your local jobcentre. To find all the sales assistant jobs near you;

  • Search for support worker jobs on popular job websites such as; Indeed, Total Jobs and CV Library
  • Use the DWP’s Find A Job Service
  • Check local newspapers and local Facebook groups, especially groups dedicated to local jobs

Support Worker Job Titles

When you search for a support worker job online, be aware that the jobs might be advertised using a different job title. Popular job titles for support worker jobs include;

  • Care Assistant
  • Care Worker
  • Healthcare Assistant
  • Healthcare Worker
  • Relief Worker

What does a support worker do?

The job of a support worker varies depending on the job role and the company you’re working for. Check the duties and responsibilities of sales assistant job advertisements to find jobs that best suit your skills and experience. 

The day-to-day tasks of a support worker include;

  • Attend meetings with other healthcare professionals
  • Help patients to use the toilet
  • Help patients shower and get dressed
  • Tidy the ward or patients’ homes