Frequently Asked Questions

When people are thinking of applying for a job with us, they've usually got a ton of questions. Some of these can be found by reading our website and others will be answered during interview. We thought we'd bring a lot of these together into one article. We hope it helps!

What does part-time and full-time mean?

Regards our residential support workers, part-time can be either 22.5 hours per week (3 days per week) or 30 hours per week (4 days per week). Full time is 37.5 hours per week ( 5 days).

Regards our Domiciliary Care support workers, part-time can be either 21 hours per week (3 days per week) or 28 hours per week (4 days per week). Full time is 35 hours per week ( 5 days). We also have short part-time weeks of 14 hours a week.

What are the shift patterns?

For residential care, there are a variety of shifts. The main ones are an 'early' which starts at 7.00am and finishes at 3pm and a 'late' which starts at 2.30pm and finishes at 10.30pm. There are also ‘flexi shifts’ such as 10am-6pm or 1pm-9pm depending on service user needs. We also offer the option of a 'long day' which starts at 7.00am and finishes at 10.30pm. We also have 'waking nights’ and ''sleep in' shifts in some services which start at 10pm and finishes at 7am. It's worth noting too that we have a policy of making sure all support workers get two weekends off every month.

Domiciliary care shifts are more flexible with many different patterns existing, depending on client and staff requirements.

How much training do I get?

Regulations stipulate that you must receive a minimum amount of training which you are fully paid to attend. These modules include fire, health & safety, safeguarding and equality & diversity. We also provide our own training in the following areas; mental health, learning disabilities, autism, total communication, dementia, medication systems and positive behaviour management (this one, both in the classroom and in our soft mats room).

It's also our policy to give informal training when necessary. This can be led by you or us. In short, if you can be better at your job with extra training, we'll provide it for you, whatever it takes.

Do I have to do a QCF in Health and Social Care?

Yes. We have a commitment to make sure all our staff have the right skills to do their jobs properly. The best way for us to prove this, is for all our employees to have a qualification related to the roles they're performing. This gives us, families and care professionals the confidence that the people we support, are being looked after in the best way possible. You will be enrolled onto the course after you’ve successfully completed your 6-month probationary period.

Do I have to do a lot of writing?

Documentation is very important. Whilst most of your time as a support worker is hands on, there does have to be a written time line of events and activities. This provides us with accountability and enables managers to write monthly and quarterly reports with confidence. Support and training is given in these areas.

Would I have to register with Social Care Wales?

Yes. From next year domiciliary care staff will have to register with Social Care Wales. Residential care staff will have to register from 2022. Again, this gives the public confidence that we're employing the right people with the right training and qualifications. ILS will support the cost of this.

Do I get paid to travel to work?

For residential support workers, no. For domiciliary care workers, you get paid your full rate of pay for travel time between care visits. You won't be paid to get to your first job of the day or to travel home after a shift.

What about zero hour contracts?

Unlike many care providers, we believe zero hour contracts are not a responsible way to employ staff. For all staff, our starting point is to offer a minimum number of guaranteed hours of work. In the care homes this is currently 22.5 hrs per week and in domiciliary care it is 14 hours per week. We hope this helps people in their wider lives eg. getting loans and mortgages. However, if you only want a zero hours contract, please still get in touch.

Do you have a rota system?

Yes. We have a really efficient and well liked online system. It is updated in four week blocks and you're given a minimum of two weeks notice. These are posted electronically and are easy to view on mobile phones as well as on your laptops and PCs via a web browser. We even have a link to it via our website.

Are sleep in shifts paid the same as a normal shift?

Yes. We pay the national living wage for sleep in shifts. We wrote a detailed article on this topic last year. You can read it here. It's worth noting that we're expecting the law to change again in this area but we'll keep everyone posted as and when changes occur.

How do I apply?

You can apply to work with ILS through the links on our employment page on our website, by calling or writing to our HR director (Ben Jones on 01267 223722 or benjones@ils.wales) or by visiting us in person at our head office in Carmarthen or our domiciliary office in Aberystwyth, where you'll be able to pick up an application form.

Finally, if you're applying, best of luck!


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