Thinking of leaving a permanent role? Agency social work has a lot to offer.


Thinking of leaving a permanent role? Agency social work has a lot to offer.

I’m speaking to social workers all over the country who are considering their next move, and how to capitalise on their experience and take their career to the next level.

It’s no secret that hundreds of social workers have already made the move from permanent roles to locum work. It can be a tricky one. After all, why would you choose to give up a permanent contract with paid holidays, sick pay and an employer’s pension, to take on the uncertainty of interim assignments?

Work/life balance

The social workers I know say it’s about getting the work/life balance right, and to have their experience and expertise recognised through their pay. In the past few years, it has simply been easier to do that as a locum social worker.

Another major factor is the advice that you get when making the change. It’s my job to make sure my social workers are considering the right assignments. For instance, if working patterns, hybrid models or even remote working is important, I’ll focus on those opportunities first. We’ll also make sure that we advise you correctly on whether there are any restrictions to where you can work initially – some Authorities do have agreements with neighbouring boroughs on whether you can work there through an Agency for an initial period of time  – we can advise you on this, and how to navigate through it.

Capped case numbers

Similarly, if you’re one of the many social workers who’s been struggling with an unmanageable workload, we can explore projects where there’s a great support structure, and where case numbers are capped.

If you’re new to agency work, or if you’re looking for your next assignment, I’m always more than happy to review the essentials with you. We’ll check that your CV is doing you justice, talk about how you manage your notice period with your current employer, and explore what it means to register with an umbrella company. We’ll go through each step together, consider all the options and decide on a strategy that suits you.

Social work will always be challenging – it’s never going to be entirely nine-to-five, and agency work may not suit everyone. For every social worker who thrives on the freedom it provides, there will be another who finds it unsettling.

Best possible outcome

I always make sure I understand what motivates my social workers, and what they’re trying to achieve. It makes no sense to force a round peg into a square hole, and by discussing the issues, we can work together to get the best possible outcome.

If you’re a social worker thinking of moving to locum work, don’t hesitate to get in touch. I’d love to go through your options and give you the strategies you need to manage them. We help hundreds for social workers make this transition every year. It could be the best career move you ever make.