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The importance of good induction to shape a career in social care.

Good induction

How many times have we heard ‘you only get one chance to make a good first impression’?

Of course, this is true in a range of situations from interviews to other first-time meetings, and it is also crucial when it comes to onboarding and induction for new employees. Often if you ask older members of your team, the chances are that they will still remember their first job or recent job change and they will also remember the good (and bad) induction that shaped their start in role.

Having a planned structure to the new employees first few weeks and months will help them to feel that they fit in to your team and will ensure that your existing team understand their own roles and responsibilities. Skills for Care released figures in July 2023 showing that staff turnover rates remain around 30% in the social care sector and many of these leavers are within their first 3-12 months in role.

You spend a great deal of time and money in recruiting any new member of the team, they make choices and so do you until their first day of employment arrives and beyond. There is much anticipation and some excitement on both sides. But then ‘work’ gets in the way and all best intentions of welcoming your new hire will often fall by the wayside. There are incidents, handovers, staff calling in sick, paperwork and deadlines, unexpected visitors on the day and before you know it, the planned time to spend with you new employee has disappeared.

And how does that feel for the new employee? Frustration, confusion and sadness are often expressed when a new hire is left on their own watching a certain amount of chaos and a large amount of disarray as everyone else seems to rush about knowing what to do whilst they sit and watch.

The keys to success lie in:

· Communication

· Preparation

· Empathy and kindness

Communication – as part of onboarding, keep in touch and invite the new joiner to come in before their first day to build their confidence and sense of belonging.

Preparation – whilst plans may change on the actual first day, all new employees appreciate the effort that goes into a structured induction plan. It provides a framework to ensure that important information is shared and that required training and work shadowing takes place. A plan with a certain amount of flexibility built in, will help you to overcome any difficulties on the first day.

Empathy and kindness – new joiners want to feel welcomed into your team and that they are not alone in the ‘newness’ A kind gesture such as a small welcome bag containing a first morning snack and tea bag, tissues and some hand cream will go a long way to making someone feel part of your team. If you can, then encourage your residents to put some welcome bags together and to be a part of welcoming the new employee on their first day.

As mentioned earlier, you spend a lot of time and money in hiring new employees and this can all be enhanced by a good onboarding and induction plan to ensure that your new employee feels welcomed and valued as part of your team.


A good induction is essential to any workforce development plan. Contact CareShield today 0345 880 1818 to see how our systems and services will deliver the learning, competence and performance you need to ensure an effective team.

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