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The state of the adult social care sector and workforce in England, 2017

by Skills for Care provides information about the sector including; its size and shape, employment information, recruitment and retention issues, workforce demographics, pay, qualification rates and future workforce forecasts.

Skills for Care, as the leading source of adult social care workforce intelligence, helps to create a better-led, skilled and valued adult social care workforce. We provide practical tools and support to help adult social care organisations in England recruit, retain, develop and lead their workforce. We work with employers and related services to ensure dignity and respect are at the heart of service delivery.

The National Minimum Data Set for Social Care (NMDS-SC) is an online workforce data collection system for the adult social care sector. 2017 marks ten years since the launch of NMDS-SC online. That is ten years of workforce intelligence helping to shape and provide evidence about the sector.

Adult social care is a growing sector that, in 2016, had around 20,300 organisations, 40,400 care providing locations and a workforce of around 1.58 million jobs. The number of full-time equivalent jobs was estimated at 1.11 million and the number of people working in adult social care was estimated at 1.45 million.

As at 2016/17 the adult social care sector was estimated to contribute £41.8 billion per annum to the English economy. The total wage bill of the sector, calculated using NMDS-SC information, accounted for almost half (46%) of this amount, at £19.3 billion (up 16% from 2011/2012).

The number of adult social care jobs has increased by 19% since 2009 (by 255,000 jobs). The number of jobs increased by around 1.5% (by 20,000 jobs) between 2015 and 2016. This rate of increase was slower than in previous years.