News & Insights

10 Ways to avoid scaring your staff away

10 ways to avoid scaring your staff away

  • May-17-2022

10 to avoid scaring your staff into the arms of your competition.

  1. Mud sticks! if your company culture and environment stink – so will your reputation. Create a positive workplace and have positive staff.
  2. If a job’s worth doing – don’t do it yourself!Micromanaging makes people feel undervalued and undermined. Delegate effectively – and show your people you trust them.
  3. Sticking to the job spec is sticking two fingers up to your staff! Be flexible, be grown up, be human – and use the job spec as a guide, not the gospel!
  4. Ask – don’t tell! Include your people in your decision making – and help them to feel they have a stake in your business. If you freeze them out, you’ll drive them out.
  5. If they can’t grow, they’ll go! Not providing opportunities for job progression is a sure fire of keeping your staff turnover high. Give them a career path – and develop them with coaching, mentoring and training.


Finding Home Care for my Gran during a Pandemic

Finding Home Care for my Gran during a Pandemic

  • May-17-2022

Arranging my Gran's Care

2020 has been an awful year for so many people and for so many reasons, for me this was compounded by having to do the hardest thing I have ever had to do, namely organising care for my 98-year-old gran. 

My grandad was my hero and died far too young, but I think about him every day – I often hear him giving me a talking to in my ear when I am struggling with something. My Gran lived for my Grandad, he was her world and when he passed away 34 years ago my Gran told me she couldn’t carry on without him and me honestly I was really worried she wouldn’t, however, 34 years later I'm very proud to say my Gran is 98 years old and was very active until quite recently when she had a fall in the community, which really knocked her confidence.  When my Grandmother’s health started to decline further, I asked the family if I could look for suitable home care companies to visit and take care of her.

Choosing A Homecare Provider

Working in the sector for so long I already knew a lot of the providers in her area, sadly the one I would have chosen didn’t have an office in her hometown.  So, I started my search by asking other people on social media about their experiences, looking at CQC Ratings and I also looked at how long the Registered Manager had been in post. 

I created a short-list and one by one I called the companies to find out more about them.  I had a lot of questions, and of course, some of those were about their recruitment methods for carers.  The final company I called, I had not heard of before, they were a family run home care provider. I was on the phone for over an hour and I got the full history of the company, why they were formed, and their values. They ran through most of the team with me too. 

Another provider I called spent 15 minutes asking me questions and then gave me a reference number to say someone would call me back.  I got that call a month later, by then my grans' care had been started weeks ago. What did put me off though was my Gran was a reference number, not a person. 

I chose the family-run company that had wonderful values and made me feel so at ease, and we were not disappointed.  The only issue we had was we wanted more care for my Gran, and they didn’t have the capacity.  I decided to offer them free advertising to help with their recruitment pipeline.


I found myself educating my family about certain aspects of Dementia.  Gran had stopped watching Television, had become reluctant to use any electricity, and had started moonlighting and having accidents around the house.  They felt she was almost being naughty, and they struggled to understand her behavior, so I set about finding Dementia Cafes and local support groups so that they could learn more about Dementia.


Just as the COVID pandemic peaked Gran needed a lot more help and support, as the care she needed was having an enormous strain on my Uncle and his wife, who had also just found out she had cancer.  We found ourselves as a family having to move Gran to a Nursing Home at the worst possible time we could. 

Due to our previous experience with my Aunty who was abused in a Nursing Home, I was passionate about choosing the Care Home and I don’t think I have ever interviewed a Registered Manager as thoroughly….. the poor lady!!!! Anyway, she moved in and had to isolate for her first two weeks which was a very confusing time for her. 

I am happy to say though, despite living on her own for the last 34 years, she absolutely loves it.  She has so many friends and all the Care Assistants know my Dad and constantly keep him updated on her progress.  All of them say “We love her” so I know she is in a great place.  The family has only managed to visit as Keith Lemon would say “Through the window” and here is a picture of her a few weeks ago. Sadly, I have not seen her since May for her 98th birthday.

Since moving into the Home my Gran has thrived, she has gained weight and is a lot happier person for making the move.


Aunty Christine, My Inspiration.

Aunty Christine, My Inspiration

  • May-16-2022

Vicky’ Inspiration………………..

This is story is about my Aunty Christine, she suffered appalling abuse in a Nursing Home and is one of the main reasons I enjoy my job, playing my part in ensuring the very best care is delivered by working hard to match the ideal candidates with their ideal employer and setting.  

Christine lived at home for most of her life with my Grandma and Granddad.  When you visited the first thing she did was make everyone a cup of tea, she loved being useful.   When she was in her teens she had a nervous breakdown and was taken to Stanley Royd, Hospital in Leeds.  I do also know that she was subjected to Electric shock treatments.  She was classed as “Backwards” in those days. 

When my grandparents got older they decided it was time to ensure that Christine was cared for when they had gone that is when Christine entered the Care System.   She was in a Residential Home in Leeds for a while and we did see her change a lot, she would be half asleep half the time.  She wasn’t her usual fun self and became withdrawn and unhappy.  We then were informed this home was closing and she was to be moved to Bradford 16 Miles away from where we lived. This wasn’t ideal for my Mum who didn’t drive and would have had to catch several busses each day to visit where as previously she was only a few minutes away. We did not seem to have a say in this and I decided to get involved. 

Myself and my mum attended a meeting with every care professional involved in her well being – there must have been 10 people in that room and do you know what … none of them knew anything about her! It angered me.  The doctor read out a list of medication she was currently taking and when I asked why she was taking a certain medication I got a blank face.   We were informed that she would be moving to Bradford because she needed a Nursing Home and as she was under 55 it was hard to find a home that would take her.  The decision had already been made!

My aunty went to live at the Home in Bradford, during her time there she had her cigarette allowance reduced to 3 a day this caused her distress and she was reduced to going into the local Supermarket Café to take cigarette butts from ashtrays.  The Home knew about this and did nothing.

She then broke her hip (We still don’t know why) and we were called to the Hospital.  I went with my mum on that first visit to find her in the middle of a small ward of six.  Her hair was stuck to her head, she smelled so badly of urine the whole ward smelt.  Worst of all the care home had put her in an ambulance with her belongings in a bin liner and no-one accompanied her in the ambulance from the home.  It was whilst she was in here that we received the sad news that she had terminal lung cancer.   Christine returned to the home and never walked again and more incidents happened – her bed was moved away from her buzzer as she was constantly in pain.  The final straw was whilst she was being drag lifted; she cried out in pain and was slapped across the face with a slipper!

Safeguarding became involved and I called the local CQC Inspector and started an official complaint. To this day I do not know what happened to that Care Assistant.  The results we got from the CQC inspection were a list of complaints and whether they had been upheld or not upheld it was all a bit lame to be honest!.  We did also discover that there were discrepancies with her monies. But no real answers!

She moved from this home to a home in Leeds where the staff were amazing… she spent her final months being Nursed by some fantastic carers which I am glad of and I was by her side when she died.  Sadly I cannot change what happened to her and the sad life she lived.   Knowing what I know now I honestly think my Aunty had a Learning Disability or Autism.  I feel sad that her life was like this and that she didn’t receive the best care and support she deserved.  In my opinion she should have been living independently not in a Care Home or Nursing Home and had she been born today she may have been treated differently.

RIP my darling and I think about you every day

Victoria Marsden

Managing Director

B12 Awareness Week: My Journey to discovering I had Pernicious Anaemia & B12 Deficiency

Discovering I had Pernicious Anaemia & B12 Deficiency

  • May-16-2022

Please help by Signing our petition to make B12 available over the counter:

My journey probably started way before I even knew there was a problem.  I believe I had been deficient in B12 for at least six years before it was finally diagnosed… and even then I didn’t get a definitive yes you are! Why? … due to the shear lack of training and education within our Health System surrounding B12 Deficiency and in particular Pernicious Anaemia.

I started to feel very unwell over a period of maybe six years, I started having excruciating migraines, my stomach was rotting, and I felt so tired it was more than just lack of sleep or energy I was literally falling asleep and unable to function normally.  I visited my GP on several occasions who conducted so many blood tests and eventually referred me to a specialist in Leeds.  They’re opinion was I had IBS and sent me away with …. wait for it… Diarrhea tablets – even though I told him I actually struggled to go… not the opposite.   I knew I didn’t have typical symptoms of IBS, so I didn’t give up.  I must have seen every GP in the surgery – and not one tested my B12! Why??? Because it isn’t part of the Full Blood Count – you have to request it separately.

I then moved to Cumbria and again my health continued to deteriorate to the point where I was losing my speech, couldn’t form words and just wanted to sleep all the time, I was having panic like symptoms and suffered a week-long migraine which caused me to lose my speech for nearly six weeks.   I visited my GP god knows how many times, I was told I was depressed, given countless medications for my migraines, but the worse bit was when I was told I had MS – Mrs Marsden I am going to send you for a brain scan and I want you to prepare yourself that it will come back that you have “White Matter “ on the brain.  Can you imagine!!!! Anyway, I had the scan and I didn’t have MS Thank god!!!

Through the GP’s testing I found out I had H-Pylori a very common bacteria that lives in the gut and basically destroys the gut wall.  I was given very strong anti-biotic which eradicates this bacterium which did clear up.  That was the last I thought about that and there was no follow up with the Doctors.  But it later turned out, that either the H-Pylori or the nasty anti-biotics triggered an autoimmune response which lead to the destruction of my stomach wall.

While this was all going on I did extensive research of my own – narrowing other things down, researching my symptoms.   It was through this research that I came across a lot of articles about H-Pylori and the links to Pernicious Anemia.  H-Pylori can lead to Autoimmune Atrophic Gastritis.  Given that I have had other autoimmune issues in the past .. alarm bells started to ring.  So… I booked yet another appointment with my GP and insisted on seeing a Gastroenterologist as I wanted the camera into my stomach. 

By this time, I was really ill, the panic attacks were daily, the brain fog, the forgetting words, not being able to say what I wanted to say, memory loss, forgetting I had been on days out, and I will be honest I actually felt like I wasn’t even here. 

I went for my Endoscopy and the specialist advised me that I had Atrophic Gastritis (Basically thinning of the stomach lining) at this point it was Chronic Acute Gastritis – now I knew that this diagnosis meant that I had lost my intrinsic factor and would need B12 injections for life (because I had done my research).  Your intrinsic factor sits in the lining of your stomach and you need intrinsic factor to convert B12 in the body to a usable form.  Guess what though … even the Gastroenterologist didn’t recognise B12 deficiency and didn’t initiate B12 injections!   Wow !

After this diagnosis I joined the B12 charities and contacted Martin Hooper the Chairman and ask for advice.  He advised me on the correct protocol for treating B12 Deficiency and warned me that the GP’s do not follow guidelines.  Guidelines state that loading doses should continue until all symptoms have stopped.   I also came across a man called Dr Chandy on the internet.. a GP from County Durham, who incidentally had been struck off the GMC for treating people with B12 injections and had successfully cured people diagnosed with MS.  I was so intrigued by this man and he clearly had a lot of knowledge surrounding Pernicious Anaemia I went to meet him.  What an amazing experience.  He showed me case study after case study of people he had treated and regained their mobility due to wrong diagnosis, when in fact a simple B12 injection could have cured them.  Dr Chandy believes that the big pharmaceutical companies are not interested in B12 as it is a 60p injection, think about the money that is in MS Drugs and Anti-depressants !!!! Wrong isn’t it!

I continued to deteriorate and I had stopped working by now, I could no longer do my job.  Being on the telephone interviewing candidates was impossible, I would stutter, break into panic attacks and basically couldn’t even function. 

The final time I went to the Doctors I broke down and said … this is wrong I need help.  Right there and then my GP had no hesitation and gave me a B12 Injection there and then.  He then actioned my loading doses which were over a period of weeks.   Mr Hooper was right though the loading doses stopped and then I was put on a maintenance dose of 1 injection every three months.   Anyone with this illness will tell you that this is shocking, this is nowhere near enough, in fact a dog with the same illness gets an injection once a week (you might say its because it’s a money maker for the vets… no… its actually because animals get treated way better than humans and I got that information from a Vet in Glasgow that I met on a trip away)

So my journey then began in extensively researching my illness.  I read haematological papers, I joined support groups on Facebook, I contacted the charities, I stayed in regular contact with Dr Chandy and this research turned my life around.  Dr Chandy advised me that ideally, I should have daily injections until my symptoms improved, there was no way the GP’s were going to allow this as they have to stick to the guidelines.  These support groups taught me that if I was going to get better I had to take my life into my own hands.  B12 is available over the counter in most European countries… but oh no .. not in the UK.  If you can imagine it the same as a Diabetic. I need B12 just as much as they need insulin. yet I cannot buy it in the UK over the counter and I am restricted to one injection every three months despite there been no evidence to back this up – NO RESEARCH!!!

B12/Pernious anaemia took over my life – I read absolutely everything I could about it…. And I absolutely became obsessed with it. 

My research brought me to the point I realised to get better I must self-medicate.  My family were against it, I had to really educate my husband …. After all everyone wants to trust their GP right??

So just like many others with my illness I bought my B12 from Germany and started self-treating, the first time I injected myself (using Insulin needles), I wont lie I nearly passed out.  But then I just got used to it.  It took about six months of daily injections for me to improve, and I gradually reduced the injections to every other day.  I could not drink alcohol as it sent me back into panic mode and I learnt that Alcohol depletes your B12.  

Three years later I am now on once a week injection and 90% improved.  When I did start treating myself, my stomach which had been distended due to lack of movement completely calmed down and went back to normal, my memory returned, my speech improved and the numbness I had in my leg stopped progressing.   But most of all it was like I had woken up, for years I had felt in a day dream… not actually in the room! 

This journey has been horrendous, and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.  When I joined my support group on Facebook three years ago there was 1.5K members there are now 18.3K members!  I have registered as a support member so if anyone wants advice I will travel to meet fellow suffers.  I wrote to Jeremy Hunt, Theresa May and Tim Farron about my story of misdiagnosis and how B12 should be available over the counter…. All I received was a standard reply.  Tim Farron on the other hand did reply with his disgust and he too wrote to Jeremy Hunt.  Sadly nothing came of it.  You can help though by signing our petition to make B12 available over the counter:  


Support Groups

Facebook Support Group


Dr Chandy – Articles


B12 Charities

There are three forms of B12 Cynocobalamin (when it enters your gut), your intrinsic factor (which we don’t have) converts it to Hydroxocobalamin and then when goes further into your intestines it converts again to Methylcobalamin.  If you have Pernicious Anaemia you are unable to carry out this conversion.  It is also myth that we store B12 in our liver (yes healthy people do) – to store b12 you have to be able to covert it in the first place.   If you become so low in B12 your body depletes your liver stores and then starts to take it from your bone marrow.


Pernicious means “deadly” because before B12 injections PA could kill you.  Without B12 Injections someone with PA would end up with irreversible neurological damage.  This can affect any part of the body.


Please share my story and raise awareness.  Better still if you know Jeremy Hunt. …… give him a hard prod!

We have implemented the FISH Philosophy

We have implemented the FISH Philosophy

  • May-14-2022

Social Care & Education Jobs have implemented the FISH Philosophy - We Love what we do and Love coming to work!!

We strive to provide the very best Customer Service, ensuring everyone enjoys their engagement with us whether were Recruiting for you or helping you find your ideal next job role. 

The video below shows an insight into the FISH Philosophy from the Seattle Seafood Market - would you welcome this standard of Customer Engagement?


Bailey's loving Monday's !

Bailey's loving Monday's !

  • May-13-2022

We have been very naughty at Social Care & Education Jobs today and sneaked Bailey into the Building (No Pets Allowed)!!!!  We are hoping the landlord takes pity on Bailey as he is recovering from his operation. Most of you that follow me on Linkedin will know what kind of operation he has had, I am sure all the men folk will have absolute sympathy for poor Bailey.  Just need to get him interviewing candidates this afternoon and we have cracked it! 

What is your

What is your "Wow" Factor when interviewing a Candidate?

  • May-13-2022

I spend every day interviewing experienced Operations Managers, Registered Managers, Care Coordinators, Nurses, Field Care Supervisors and also those that have never worked in care before.  One thing that is very important to me when I am carrying out my interviews is to get the "Wow Factor" so what does the "Wow factor" look like, to me, these are some of the things that make me love a candidate.

  • They come alive when you're asking them to give you an example of a positive outcome they have had with one of their Service Users.
  • They tell you the story of why they went into care, and they make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck
  • They tell you all the little things they do to go above and beyond
  • They are an excellent role model and inspiration to others.
  • They love it when they see a colleague do well.
  • When you feel their passion!

You do not get any of the above from reading a CV!  Someone could write the worst CV in all the world, and then you speak to them and "WOW" 

Have you ever been really wowed?  Has anyone ever reduced you to tears (I certainly have) if you would love to share your story and would love to write a blog article for our website please do get in touch with our marketing team at


Pre-Screening The Secret to Avoid Interview No Shows

Pre-Screening The Secret to Avoid Interview No Shows

  • May-13-2022

First impressions count, and it’s very easy to fall into a pre-screen that suits your business, many providers overlook the fact that this should really be a two-way conversation between the candidate and end employer.  This is the chance for the candidate to interview you too, an opportunity for you to really get them to buy into coming to work for you.  If you don’t entice them, your competitors will. So how can you screen candidates but also ensure you get out of it what you need.

If your pre-screen is good, then candidates are more likely to turn up to their interview.  First Impressions Count!

The Attracting Mode

Your first contact should always be a call – NOT an application form and NOT an email. Although we understand the need and importance of application forms, this could also slow down your process incredibly and be a barrier.  Chances are your competitors are calling the candidates, getting them in for interview next day, and maybe even offering there and then, in the meantime your sat waiting for the candidate to reply to your email or fill out your application form.

Your Approach

We always find that a pretty informal approach initially is key, this ensures that the candidate feels relaxed and feels that they are able to ask as many questions as possible.  You should be:-

Warm, Friendly, welcoming, informative, nurturing, reassuring but truthful. 

  • You should also be an ambassador for your companies Brand, Values and Ethos and be able to tell a prospective candidate why they should work for you.
  • ALWAYS make sure you ask if they are ok to talk before continuing your call.
  • REMIND always remind them which position you are calling them about, they may have applied for many vacancies.
  • EXPLAIN that you have received their application and the nature of the call is to find out a little more about them.
  • DON’T fire questions at them or grill them at this point remember you are still in the ATTRACTING MODE
  • REMEMBER– the prescreen is a two-way thing, they are deciding if you are right for them,
  • REMEMBER – you are probably not their only option as an employer.

A Chat is much more likely to give you, and them, the answers you are looking for regarding the candidate’s suitability.

What makes you special?

This is one of the key questions our Recruitment Team always asks when we take a new vacancy, and it is so saddening that not many people can provide a really good answer.  We often get told

  • We provide a free uniform
  • We pay travel time
  • We have one awards.

Believe it or not none of the above are that important to a candidate.  As an employer or recruiter, your company should have a clear mission statement, this mission statement should run through every employee.  Every employee should know what this is, what are your company’s values, and ethos?  What makes you unique? Why were you formed? What is the story?

The Result

The result you want after your pre-screen call is to have: -

  1. Confirmed that the candidate is really interested in the position
  2. The Candidate has applied for the position for all the right reasons.
  3. The candidate meets your criteria.
  4. MOST IMPORTANTLY you put the phone down and the candidate REALLY wants to come and work for YOU… not your competitor.
  5. You have booked them in for INTERVIEW - REMEMBER speed is the essence. 


Move fastSocial Care is an extremely fast-paced candidate led market, 

So don’t delay book the interview today!

What a difference a year makes!

What a difference a year makes!

  • May-12-2022

This is my son Brandon, he is 9, he is eating and smiling!! Not something I have been able to say for many years. A few of you have followed my posts on linked in about my desperate plea for help to support my son have a much better quality of life. Brandon has a variety of learning disabilities and for years we did not have much help and were left in what I can only describe as a state of 'crisis'. Brandon despite being small would be very aggressive, he would display significant self-injurious and somewhat violent behavior which became very alarming to support with and for my small daughter to witness (at times.)  With meetings with new doctors (his 13th pediatrician) and after waiting 1 and a half years for a CAMHS appointment we got some help with some medication. Putting into place visuals (that he accepted), ear defenders, glasses, timetables, a new teacher at school, new taxi service and now a new school altogether I can't explain the difference in my boy, my beautiful boy. He is happy, he laughs, he smiles, he tells jokes, he tells me he loves me. What a year we are having. :-)

Why do recruiters keep the employer Secret?

Why do recruiters keep the employer Secret?

  • May-10-2022

Why don’t Recruiters Share the Name of the Client or the Service they are Recruiting for?  

This puzzles me and is something we are coming across more and more over recent months, we spend a lot of time interviewing and vetting our candidates and really getting to know them, interviewing them and assessing their suitability for a role and the provider we are recruiting for.  

As part of this process we will tell them all about the service and the client we are recruiting for and giving them a really good overview of the service, where it is located, what problems or scenarios they may encounter, what development needs there are, what staff issues there may be as well as discussing future progression opportunities and the candidates own aspirations. 


Why do we go to these lengths? To ensure the candidate is right for the role from a providers point of view – ensuring that they can fulfill the role in question but also to ensure that the Candidate is he right candidate to fulfill the duties and requirements that the service needs.  


It is therefore very frustrating when we interview a candidate and submit their application only to discover that the client has received the details from elsewhere – which in itself isn't an issue, but it is an issue when the candidate is not aware of this!!! 


Today I spoke with a candidate who had been interviewed by a Recruiter but had not been told the name of the home or provider or had any details about that home – how does this excite and enthuse the candidate? How can they research and prepare? How do they even know it’s the right role for them?  The candidate in question thanked me for giving them an insight into the service and the provider and helping prepare for any future interview they may be invited for as they were really keen on the opportunity as I had described. 


The other scenario is even more worrying, when a candidate doesn’t even know they have been submitted or even interviewed. This amazes me, why are Employers paying a fee for someone to fire CV’ at them and hope one of them sticks? Without any quality assurance or the candidate's permission!! 


We much prefer an honest quality driven approach where we work in partnership with our clients to understand them and their needs and requirements and find the candidates that meet those requirements and where there aren't exact matches, work with the client to find a suitable alternative that fits 8 out of 10 of those ideals. 


I know it is an old adage and people will believe I am just bitter from missing out on a placement – im not!! I still spoke to both of the candidates I mentioned, gave them a few further tips for interview and wished them well and am happy to give them any further information they want about the role – why, when we don’t stand to make anything from it? – because in the world of Health & Social Care it is important and the service we provide goes much further than money – peoples safety and welfare are involved,  and, we want to help in our own way ensure the very best care provision being delivered.   


Rant over, but suffice to say if you want to work with a Recruitment Partner that values the role it plays in supporting you to provide the very best care we would be delighted to support you.


Paul Marsden 


Reading a CV, Have you ever...

Reading a CV, Have you ever...

  • May-16-2021

Have you ever opened a candidate’s CV and immediately found a reason NOT to progress them or call them?  This can be a very common trap In-House Recruiters or Recruitment Consultants can easily fall into.   This can be due to laziness or simply judging or presuming without good reason.

Our Top Tips on Reading a CV

The best CV does not always translate into the best candidate, that is why Pre-screening is really important.  Depending on the level/experience required for the job vacancy you a recruiting for we have shared our Top Tips on common mistakes made when Reading a CV.

It is really important not to:

  • Judge or presume anything.
  • Assume that they would not want to do your job, based on what they are doing now. They have applied after all, so explore this interest further.
  • Make assumptions as to a candidate fit based purely on their CV.
  • Assume why they have moved jobs. Always Speak to them and find out why.
  • Assume especially within the Care Sector that they have never had experience, they may have been brought up with a sibling with Disabilities or nursed an elderly relative, this may not necessarily show on their CV.
  • Rule them out based on their address, they may not mention if they are looking to relocate, or they may live at one address but spend the rest of the week at a partner’s house… so always ask first / don’t assume.
  • Be put off by a badly written CV, not many people do know how to write a perfect CV, and most people are not comfortable blowing their own trumpet.

A CV Cannot tell you:

  • Tell you what their personality is like
  • Show you their passion
  • Their story
  • Why they really applied for the job
  • That they are relocating

So basically, do not judge people by their CV’s prior to speaking to them, you may be blown away!  Look for a great attitude, passion and desire to make a difference”!  A CV does not tell you what their personality is like.  You will always find a reason NOT to call a candidate STOP yourself, pick up the phone and call them.

Contacting Candidates - Top Tips

Contacting Candidates - Top Tips

  • June-05-2020

Gone are the days where you receive a great application but can sit and wait for four or five more applications before you organise interviews.  The Health & Social Care candidate market is so competitive and with so many providers all competing for the same talent, you have to adapt your recruitment process to ensure you do not lose out on the top talent!

Top Tips for Contacting Candidates


  • Call the candidate within 24 hours of applying and conduct a Pre-Screen/Introduction call. This is key! Grab them while you have their attention.
  • Call once, Call Twice and Call Three Times / What if they don’t answer

 A common theme when receiving & managing candidate applications is that candidates apply for a job then do not answer the phone.   Calling an applicant at different times of the day can prove successful, key times for example before work, lunch time or evenings.  Reasons candidates may not answer are:

  • They are busy working and it is difficult to talk
  • Your calling from a withheld number.
  • You are calling from a number that is not local
  • You are calling from a number they do not recognise.

Leave a detailed Voicemail

How many times have you received a voicemail and the person on the other end of the line speaks so fast and unclear you cannot even make out what they have said?  So when leaving a voicemail speak very clearly, in fact slow down, State your name, Company and the reason for your call, leave your telephone number, your working hours and your email address.

However please be mindful that Voicemails can go un-discovered.


Our rule is always Call, Text, Email, however emails are not a sure way of contacting a candidate.  The downside to emailing a candidate is:

  •  The email could land in their spam / junk folder and never be seen.
  • The candidate may not regularly check their emails.

Send an SMS/Text Messages

It amazes me how many Providers and Internal Recruiters do not have access to a SMS/texting system.  People are very much led by their mobile phones, not many people have access to their emails, but more often than not Text/SMS messages are instant.  Texts are less likely to go undiscovered or ignored.

Health & Social Care Jobs have partnered with IceTrak Icetrak is a UK based and owned company specialising in the supply of cloud based SMS text messaging services to the corporate and SME marketplace.

Using an SMS Text messaging system means we can send a text message via our CRM System or simply use our email to send a text message.  This has made a massive difference to our candidate conversion rate over the last three years. If you are interested in using an SMS/Texting system, there are lots of products on the market.

What to include in the text?

Make the text exciting/make them feel valued instantly and include your contact details and opening times.  For example

Hi Janine, thank you for your application for the Registered Manager job , I am very keen to speak to you. So, we can progress your application, hopefully to interview stage please could you call Vicky Marsden on 0113 8160204 (Mon – Friday 8.30-5.30)

Immediately they think they have the chance of an interview and it should prompt them to call you.

Look out for further blogs in this series

  • “Your first contact with a candidate”
  • “Application Forms”
  • “Candidate Tracking and why you should do it”
  • “Face to face interviewing”
  • “How to create a great induction process”
  • “Reasons People Leave a Job”
  • “How to retain your staff team”


I have cared for individuals in their darkest of days

I have cared for individuals in their darkest of days

  • December-05-2019

My name is Amanda Wright and I have been involved in the care sector for over 12 years.  I very much believe that each candidate's carer or support worker is instrumental to a Service user's future.  My background is originally Domiciliary Care for older people, then I moved on to work within a residential setting for younger adults with Learning Disabilities, Physical Disabilities and Mental Health problems.  Within 2 years I was promoted to team leader and then when a Deputy Manager position came available I decided to apply and got the job!  I supported a staff team of 20 and ran a 23 Bed Residential Home.

Caring for others is extremely close to my heart, as I also have a son with severe learning disabilities and complex needs.  To be able to support candidates to find their dream job, working within a setting where my son could potentially be the person they are caring for one day is very important to me... that's why I understand how important our job is when interviewing and selecting candidates to work in the sector.

I have direct experience of working shifts, sleepovers, challenging behavior, the good times and the very sad times.  I have held people's hands as they have passed over and cared for individuals in their darkest of days, but I have also been there to help people achieve their goals and dreams and see them accomplish what they may have waited months or years to do!

Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks

  • May-17-2019

We see so many common recruitment mistakes and trends? If you are using online job boards especially pay per click methods - please get in touch we may be able to offer you much more and save you money in the process. Tel 0161 204 3374

My Inspiration......... Supporting my Son overcome Selective Mutism

My Inspiration......... Supporting my Son overcome Selective Mutism

  • July-17-2018

I have always had a very close bond with my Son Oliver, maybe its because I delivered him at home when Vicky decided to only have a 20 minute labour, leaving us no time to get to the Hospital!! Ive never been so pleased to see an Ambulance arrive to take a very blue looking baby from my hands – (Thank you Ash and Tim) I don’t know why but I never expected a baby to be so blue!!


I think this close bond really helped when I had to support Oliver at the age of 4 onwards to overcome his Selective Mutism. Being the proud parent at his prom a few weeks ago it really reminded me of how far he has come. I found myself reminiscing about his journey and decided to tell my story about our journey together, which plays its part in why I Love What I Do on a daily basis finding the ideal candidates to support others.


Oliver was a very happy child but was ‘Shy’ around certain family members especially Vicky’ parents and her sisters family. Friends and family members would exclaim Oliver was Shy and I know some people became very frustrated with the fact he wouldn’t talk to them and took it personally. We did however initially put it down to shyness however as he got older we became more and more concerned and it became apparent he wasn’t just shy.


It was thanks to one of his Teachers at his Nursery School who suggested the possibility that Oliver had something called Selective Mutism, she had recently read some literature that fitted with Oliver’s personality. He had gone through his year at Nursery and had made friends and played with other Children but was very insular in his communication and wouldn’t engage, I can remember going to the school Play and had to help Oliver in the classroom to get changed whilst in floods of tears, he was very anxious and scared and he didn’t sing through any of the songs.


His anxiety did gradually grow to such a stage that when he fell or hurt himself at School he wouldn’t cry or make a noise despite being in obvious pain. His reading started to suffer at School however the teachers knew he was taking in the information and learning all the time – sometimes better than other Children who would chit chat!


This suggestion of a possible condition came mid way through his year at Nursery, we started the referral process and went through several horrific appointments – one sticks in the mind when an ENT Dr tried to prise Oliver’s mouth open with some considerable force to look into Oliver’s mouth to check there was nothing wrong with his vocal cords – something we had advised there wasn’t as Oliver would talk quite normally to us and engage at home with myself Vicky, his older brother and my Mum. We left that appointment very quickly, it was akin to torture and heart breaking to see our tiny baby boy being subjected to this.


Oliver’ diagnosis came through CAMHS in Leeds, where they diagnosed that he had Selective Mutism but that it would be ok as “in most cases Children grow out of it by the time they get to high School” – he was still 4 at this point!!!


We weren’t prepared for this to happen and commenced our own research into the condition and what support we could offer, there were horror stories about medication solutions including anti-depressants and Children reaching Adult hood still not speaking. There were 2 key factors in Olivers development a TV programme covering Selective Mutism that highlighted the anxiety itself and potential treatment options including a technique called “Sliding in”. The 2nd was a young Australian Teacher who had just started at Oliver’ new Primary School.


I can remember Oliver’s first day at School he cried as most other children did but without making a sound or opening his mouth, we stayed with him for 20 minutes as all the other parents did and collected a very happy little boy at lunchtime who skipped as he ran out of school – we couldn’t shut him up on the way home and at home and this was what it was like through Oliver’s first months at School and during his time at Nursery he would be Silent at school but then at home you couldn’t shut him up even if you had wanted to, he had to get all of his news and ideas out to us within his trusted circle.


He did still make friends at School and most kids accepted him as he was, he played and engaged with the other Children but never spoke – he became known as the ‘Boy who didnt speak’


Not wanting to leave Oliver to suffer I discussed with School that I would try the Sliding in process, which they readily agreed.


This involved me and Oliver going to School between 20 and 30 minutes earlier and going into the Sensory Room – which was very comfy and had nice murals on the wall it was the least School environment they had.


Now whilst Oliver would speak to me at home quite normally he wouldn’t speak to me at School, I would read to him, play games like snap or other board games all with the door to the room closed, this went on for several weeks if not months before the 1st break through idea happened. I decided to speak myself through closed lips – making the noise of the word rather than speaking it – Oliver looked at me like I had gone mad!! However, we grew from that point initially making simple noises, then humming, then saying words through the clenched lips. We gradually opened the door a notch and brought a teaching assistant closer to allow the teaching assistant to hear the noises.


From that point we started to split our time between the sensory room and the classroom, in the classroom Oliver slowly started to communicate with the other Children and his Teachers by making noises through clenched lips. In the sensory room the next idea was for us to make a game of speaking into a voice recorder and playing it back to each other, this started with silly words, phrases, then graduated to questions and answers, still with the door closed. This continued for several weeks and months but all the while Oliver was growing in confidence.


He continued to have set backs a Childminder who couldn’t deal with Oliver being Silent, leaving us with no childcare support and a rush to find a replacement although thankfully “Clare Bear” was found!. She was a fantastic childminder and whilst not Oliver’s first choice was great for him and his baby sister.


I started staying a bit later and during registration would play a game with a few of the more confident (and naughty!) Children, again starting with noises until one day I asked Oliver if he would go behind a nearby separation curtain and speak into the tape recorder – I was gob smacked when he did and that simple answer of “yes” coming through the tape recorder was one of the sweetest sounds I had ever heard.


This took us to the end of Olivers first year at School, it had been a turbulent year with two steps forward three steps back most of the time but it ended with Oliver using the handheld voice recorder to speak into and communicate with his teachers and friends, the next hurdle of removing the tape recorder came quickly after that point and he would speak very quietly and timidly to people in the School.


He started to progress and grow into the second year at School however Children still remembered Oliver as the Boy who didn’t speak, he wouldn’t speak infront of the class as a whole but would engage with his closest friends. The problems did continue out of school, days out with friends he would remain silent. He could still be distant with his friends and isolate himself however gradually step by step he grew in confidence.


There were still some times where we would cringe when Teachers would highlight in assembly for example how Oliver had grown from the Child that didn’t speak to who he was now – this was done with the best of intention but made us cringe as why would Oliver want reminding of that period of silence.


Coming up to Oliver finishing year 5 and being in Year 6 my worry and anxiety started to kick back in – the High school Oliver was faced with attending was home to 1500 Children from 11 – 18, how would he cope? Would he regress and take steps backwards, would the underlying anxiety and possibly autistic traits magnify?


Whether this was classed as running away or not we don’t know but my Wife and I had always dreamed of living in the Countryside, we spent a lot of time in the Lake District and would often suggest to Oliver and his Sister that one day we could live here. Oliver never wanted to, so we held off but did visit most weekends. On one of these weekend visits Oliver surprised us by telling us he would move to the lakes. My wife being my wife (you’ll know if you’ve met her) jumped on this and with what seemed like a matter of weeks plans had been implemented, we’d found a small Secondary School that only had a annual intake of 28 and a whole school size of 125, a house, ours had been rented out and we were off!!


It was the clean break that Oliver needed, no one knew of his prior “silence” and my wife’s proudest moment was seeing Oliver be the compere at Schools comedy night. Now im not saying this is what everyone should do but it worked for us.


He has just completed his GCSE, has a Girlfriend and is looking forward to College in September with a view to becoming a Bio medical Scientist. Now don’t get me wrong a lot of the Anxiety is still there and as I mentioned I do wonder if some of his issues are stemmed from Autism to a certain degree, he is very OCD, he cannot accept change and if we are spontaneous he self-combusts, worrying about it however what I do know is, we as parents couldn’t risk doing nothing. We don’t really know where this anxiety stemmed from, there was an instance at a Childminder when at the age of 3 Oliver was placed on the naughty step for a whole day – Oliver is very strong minded and he assured us he hadn’t done what he had been accused of and therefore wouldn’t say sorry. Did this antiquated method compound underlying issues? We will probably never know.


I am happy and available for any parents or family members that want to discuss Oliver and his journey and If I can help anyone else in a similar position I would be delighted to do so, however I would hope the diagnosis and support has increased over the past 12 years.


Paul Marsden

Who applies for a job but doesn't show up for interview?

Who applies for a job but doesn't show up for Interview?

  • May-25-2018

Q: Who applies for a job, gets an interview – but then doesn’t turn up on the day?

A: Plenty! If you’re trying to recruit, and this is happening to you – check out our ten reasons below:

1. ‘I set off – but couldn’t find you’. Is your office well signposted? Are you sending them proper directions?

2. ‘Sorry – what was the job again? Is it any good?’ Are you getting them excited? What was your initial contact with them? Would YOU have been excited by what you told them?

3. ‘Sorry – I didn’t hear from you, and I’ve got another job’. How fast is your process? More to the point, how SLOW is your process? Time to audit each link in the chain – are you quick, agile and efficient?

4. ‘The job looked ok – on paper’. The first contact they had with you was an application form – nothing else. You’re forgiven, unless you work in sales – where, as you should know, people buy PEOPLE. It’s good to talk!

5. ‘I drove over, but couldn’t park’. Is parking difficult in your area? Did you tell them in advance? Did you send them any info on car parks, or handy places to look? Maybe you should have advised them to get the train or the bus?

6. ‘Sorry – I got a job, but didn’t bother cancelling with you’. Not much you can do about that – unless you fancy giving them a quick shout the day before, just to confirm. That helps to build rapport too.

7. ‘My mate attended one of your interviews. Never got the job – and never got any feedback’. The best form of marketing is word of mouth, we know that. It works in a good way, and in a bad way. Give feedback and treat people well – even if they didn’t get the job.

8. ‘Sorry – something came up. It was an emergency’. Them’s the breaks – it happens sometimes. Move onJ

9. ‘I changed my mind’. They changed their mind. People do. See above!

10. ‘I can’t afford to pay for the DBS check’. Flag this in advance – and check they can afford it. Check again at a point later in your communications with them, and avoid any last minute, time-wasting headaches.

Ten ways to avoid scaring your staff into the arms of the competition (Part 2)

Ten ways to avoid scaring your staff into the arms of the competition (Part 2)

  • February-13-2018

Ten ways to avoid scaring your staff into the arms of the competition (Part 2)

6. Take your fingers out of your ears – and listen to grievances! Not addressing bad stuff when it gets raised means you don’t care. And bosses who don’t care lose staff.

7. Deal with bullies – decisively! Bullying in the workplace makes people miserable and ill. Buy in some HR support if you need to, but do not let the bad guys n gals get away with it.

8. Set the bar high – but not too high!Unrealistic expectations stress people out and make them feel like they’re disappointing you. Stretch your staff – but don’t strain them.

9. Would the Right Honourable Gentleman Please Pack It In! Stamp on office politics as soon as you see the first signs. Don’t let the plotters and schemers have their way – and nip any ‘ganging up’ in the bud.

10. Nothing says, ‘I love you’ like a decent pay packet! If you underpay, they’ll go away. Be fair – and be competitive.

Please contact Health and Social Care Jobs if you need pay-as-you go HR support, coaching or training on any of the above points. We will be happy to supply you with a consultant to meet your needs.