How to become a social services manager

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly

University

You could do a degree or postgraduate qualification before applying for a management trainee place with a local authority. Most subjects are accepted, though you may have an advantage with a qualification in:

  • social work
  • mental health nursing
  • public health policy
  • health and social care

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course

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College

You could learn some of the skills you need for this job through a college course, like a Level 4 or 5 Diploma in Health and Social Care Management.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, a level 3 diploma or relevant experience for a level 4 or level 5 course

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Apprenticeship

You may be able to start on a higher apprenticeship for children, young people and families managers, or care leadership and management, then do further on-the-job training.

You could also do a social worker degree apprenticeship to get a trainee manager's position.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

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Direct Application

You'll need several years' management experience and a relevant qualification like the Level 5 Diploma in Leadership in Health and Social Care to apply for job vacancies directly.

Employers will expect you to have a clear understanding of legislation, safety standards and social policy for your chosen field.

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Registration

Further information

You'll find more advice about working in social services from Think Care Careers.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • customer service skills
  • knowledge of psychology
  • counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • the ability to work well with others
  • leadership skills
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

Restrictions and Requirements

You'll need to:

A driving licence will be useful.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties could include:

  • developing strategies and policies
  • managing a team of senior staff
  • planning staff and resource requirements
  • managing finances and controlling budgets
  • monitoring and improving service provision
  • managing changes to services and how they’re provided
  • analysing service data to identify areas for improvement and for reports
  • working closely with other agencies
  • supporting the professional development of your management team
  • negotiating contracts and buying in services from outside providers

Working environment

You could work in the community or in an office.

Your working environment may be emotionally demanding.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could specialise in a particular area, like mental health or children’s services.

You could also become a head of service, chief executive, assistant director or director of social services.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Senior Child Residential Worker Apprentice

  • Wage: To be agreed upon appointment Unspecified
  • Location: Hebden Bridge

Children, Young People and Families Manager Apprentice

  • Wage: Competitive salary Unspecified
  • Location: Cheadle

Courses In England

Level 3 Dip in Management

  • Provider: VOCATIONAL TRAINING SERVICES CARE SECTOR LIMITED
  • Start date: 01 December 2020
  • Location:

PEARSON BTEC LEVEL 5 HIGHER NATIONAL DIPLOMA IN INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL AND TOURISM (P/T)

  • Provider: BEDFORD COLLEGE
  • Start date: 03 October 2021
  • Location:

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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